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Images: Coral Catastrophe on the Corner Rise Seamounts

The remotely operated vehicle Hercules (URI, IFE) collects corals from the Corner Rise seamounts and takes pictures of them during a 2005 expedition. (DASS05_URI_IFE_IAO_NOAA)

The Corner Rise seamounts are a chain of extinct undersea volcanoes 1,240 miles from land (roughly the distance from Cape Cod to DisneyWorld).

A bathymetry map of the Corner Rise seamount complex in the northwest Atlantic Ocean includes Yakutat Seamount and Kukenthal Peak, where scientists found extensive damage to coral habitats. (DASS05_URI_IFE_IAO_NOAA)

WHOI biologist Rhian Waller holds a Desmophyllum dianthus?a solitary coral collected by the remotely operated vehicle Hercules (background) from the Corner Rise seamounts in August 2005. (DASS05_URI_IFE_IAO_NOAA)

Scientists used the NOAA ship Ronald H. Brown to investigate the Corner Rise seamounts in 2005. (Larry Madin, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)