People and ecosystems

Understanding of the links between coral reef ecosystems, the goods and services they provide to people, and the wellbeing of human societies.


Ecosystem dynamics: past, present and future

Examining the multi-scale dynamics of reefs, from population dynamics to macroevolution


Responding to a changing world

Advancing the fundamental understanding of the key processes underpinning reef resilience.

Coral Bleaching

Coral Bleaching

Coral Reef Studies

From 2005 to 2022, the main node of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies was headquartered at James Cook University in Townsville, Queensland (Australia)

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Ayax Diaz-Ruiz

Ayax Diaz-Ruiz

PhD candidate

University of Queensland

Born and educated in Mexico, Ayax finished his honours project in coral-associated crabs (genus Trapezia) in the Sea of Cortez by 1999 and then switched into Information Technology for his Master’s project, where he explored the use of mobile internet technology in ecological studies. Keen on returning to work on the effect of climate change on invertebrates associated to Pocillopora damicornis, he has been working under the supervision of Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, Greg Skilleter and John Pandolfi at UQ to analyse the effects of bleaching in the biodiversity of invertebrate fauna associated to pocilloporid corals. Additional objectives of his work are also studying food webs within this particular symbiosis (coral-invertebrates) and tracking recovery of biodiversity after stressful periods within coral colonies. He looks forward to increase his knowledge of ecosystem functioning in any model system as part of his career development. In his free time, he likes to relax practicing some T’ai Chi Ch’uan.


Australian Research Council Pandora

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Coral Reef Studies