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The federal government is protecting 20 types of colorful coral by putting them on the list of threatened species. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration originally looked at listing 66 species, but Wednesday listed only 20 for various reasons. The agency cited threats to coral from global warming, including oceans getting more acidic, water getting warmer and a bleaching disease. Other threats include fishing practices. The agency did not create any new rules yet that would prevent coral from being harvested or damaged. Elliott Norse, founder and chief scientist of the Marine Conservation Institute of Seattle, said coral “are organisms on the front line of anything that humans do.”

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