|A coral nursery. Coral Restoration Foundation photo|
NO! Wait! That's wrong. It's not a beautiful plant! It's a beautiful animal!
Coral is also one of the most endangered animals on the planet.
Coral lives in reefs in tropical and subtropical waters. Many of those reefs are in trouble from pollution, warming waters from climate change, a higher rate of acid changing ocean waters, and from over fishing.
Ocean researchers have learned that coral can be saved. A group of kids far from the coral reefs in Florida, spent part of their summer vacation to help save a coral reef along the Florida Keys.
Twenty boys and girls from land-locked Colorado, from ages 12 to 16, traveled to Florida to learn more about the Coral Restoration Foundation.
Students learned how to dive and "plant" coral pieces in a coral nursery.
The students told reporter, Don Rhodes, for Key Info Net, that the experience "opened a whole new world for me," "..it broadened my view of the world and gave us a bonding experience with the other kids.” Others were thrilled seeing sting rays and turtles in their natural home.
You can learn more about coral reefs at EcoKids.