UNCW lab first in NC to spawn threatened coral species in captivity


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The University of North Carolina Wilmington Coral REEF Lab recently became the first in the state to induce coral spawning in captivity.

The coral spawning takes place in tanks on campus that are run by high-tech computer systems that replicates water temperatures and marine light to help induce growth.

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UNCW Lead Researcher Nicole Fogarty says this a giant step forward to not only understand the reproduction of the species, but to create the next generation of coral to restore larger reefs.

“Here at UNCW when they’re spawning right on campus,” Fogarty said. “Then you know now we can have all the fancy microscopes, all these different pieces of equipment and resources available to us that I haven’t had previously. So, in that sense it’s a real game changer as far as what my lab can do um for research.”

The university says it’s next big step is for the these corals to spawn again after being in captivity for an entire year.

Read more the ongoing work at UNCW here.