What are two real-life examples of what can happen when sharks are removed from an ecosystem?

Answer

One study in the U.S. indicates that the elimination of sharks resulted in the destruction of the shellfish industry in waters off the mid-Atlantic states of the United States, due to the unchecked population growth of cow-nose rays, whose mainstay is scallops.

Other studies in Belize have shown reef systems falling into extreme decline when the sharks have been over-fished, destroying an entire ecosystem. It was a chain reaction: the spike in grouper population (thanks to the elimination of sharks) resulted in a decimation of the parrotfish population, who could no longer perform their important role: keeping the coral algae-free. Corals rely on sunlight for photosynthesis, and die when encrusted in algae. Parrotfish are also important!


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What are two real-life examples of what can happen when sharks are removed from an ecosystem?
What are two real-life examples of what can happen when sharks are removed from an ecosystem?
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