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Tuesday, December 6, 2011 - 1:22pm

Parts of Georgia Reef Reserved for Researchers

A portion of a reef sanctuary off the Georgia coast has been closed to fishermen and scuba divers.

The Brunswick News reports that officials with Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary say the southern third section of the 22-mile reef will be reserved for research.

Although fishing and diving are now prohibited there, vessels will be allowed to travel across the area as long as they do not stop.

George Sedberry, superintendent of the Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, says the protected area will be used by scientists to study potential impacts from various activities on natural resources, including bottom fishing, climate change and natural events such as hurricanes and droughts.

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