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Yellow Band Disease

2023 JAN 28

Preliminary   > Environment and Ecology   >   Biodiversity   >   Coral reefs

Why in news?

  • A rapidly spreading disease, commonly known as yellow band disease, is killing coral over vast stretches of the sea floor in the beautiful Samsae San Island in eastern Thailand.

About Yellow Band Disease:

  • Yellow-band disease (similar to Yellow Blotch disease) is a coral disease that attacks colonies of coral at a time when coral is already under stress from pollution, overfishing, and climate change.
  • Yellow-band disease is a bacterial infection that spreads over coral, causing discolored bands of pale-yellow or white lesions along the surface of an infected coral colony.
  • The lesions are the locations where the bacteria have killed the coral’s symbiotic photosynthetic algae, called zooxanthellae which are a major energy source for the coral.
  • This cellular damage and the loss of its major energy source cause the coral to starve, and usually cause coral death.
  • There is evidence that climate change could be worsening the disease.

Add ons:

  • Scientists believe overfishing, pollution and rising water temperatures because of climate change may be making the reefs more vulnerable to yellow-band disease


Consider the following statements regarding ‘Yellow Band Disease’:

1. They are bacterial infection that spreads over corals

2. Climate change makes the coral reefs more vulnerable to yellow-band disease

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2