The Reef Collection
Although their appearance often suggests otherwise, corals are not plants. Coral animals, so-called polyps, belong to the stinging animal family, just like jellyfish and anemones. Depending on the species, a coral polyps is a small organism, ranging in size from a few millimetres to, at most, a few centimetres. Coral consists of thousands or even millions of polyps together.
Coral is very vulnerable to climate change, because it cannot cope well with temperature fluctuations. When seawater gets too warm, for example due to global warming, coral rejects the algae with which it works so closely. As a result, the coral polyps do not get enough food. If this takes too long, the coral dies and only the white calcium skeleton remains. This is also called ‘coral bleaching’. Building their calcareous skeleton and calcareous needles also becomes more difficult for healthy corals due to climate change. The seawater is becoming more acidic, which makes it difficult for corals to use lime - the crucial building material.
The threat of coral extinction comes from natural threats, but human's influence on the health of coral reefs is also great. The sea, and with it coral reefs, become polluted with pesticides from agriculture, waste and pollution. A toxin for coral that is often overlooked is sunscreen from tourists who swim and snorkel near coral reefs. Every year, around 14,000 tonnes of sunscreen are washed into the sea. We advise you to choose an ocean-friendly sunscreen with natural UV filters instead of chemical ones. Tips for sustainable Dutch sun creams: The Lekker Company & Naïf.
Overfishing disturbs the coral reef ecosystem, especially when anchors, trawls and dynamite are used near the reef.