Controlling outbreaks of the coral-eating crown-of-thorns starfish using a single injection of common household vinegar

Boström-Einarsson, Lisa, and Rivera-Posada, Jairo (2016) Controlling outbreaks of the coral-eating crown-of-thorns starfish using a single injection of common household vinegar. Coral Reefs, 35 (1). pp. 223-228.

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Abstract

Outbreaks of the destructive coral-eating crown-of-thorns starfish, Acanthaster planci, present a considerable threat to coral reefs worldwide, and mitigating their impact has proven challenging. The most effective methods to control A. planci require injecting individual starfish with lethal chemicals. While some of these are highly effective, their administration often requires permits, training and access to specialised equipment. We aimed to identify a widely available and highly efficient alternative. We discovered that common household vinegar is lethal to A. planci individuals when injected at the base of one their arms. A single injection of 25 ml vinegar induced functional mortality in <24 h and 100 % mortality in <48 h. These results demonstrate that vinegar is an effective alternative to currently used chemicals. Vinegar is a viable alternative in the toolkit of methods that can control and eradicate local outbreaks of COTS on coral reefs.

Item ID: 49295
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1432-0975
Keywords: COTS, Acanthaster planci, control, injection, vinegar, acetic acid
Date Deposited: 09 Jun 2017 04:55
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050103 Invasive Species Ecology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 100%
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