Reef restoration extends the natural habitat for a wide variety of marine species
Coral Propagation – Monthly Progress
At Kuda Huraa during February, we transplanted eight new coral frames plus one recycled frame, using a total of 448 coral fragments (from eight different coral species).
- Water Villas (WV) – After the mass frame relocation carried out during January, the 148 remaining frames are either healthy or recovering well from the sand damage. During February, we monitored (repaired, photographed) 39 frames at this site.
Immature white eggs were spotted in some coral colonies (Acropora hyacinthus, A. digitifera), and we are monitoring for a possible spawning event in the coming weeks.
- Sea Star (SS) – The 249 frames recently relocated next to the Starfish are in good health, but fish predation continues to be a threat. Monitoring, re-transplanting and remapping activities will be resumed.
- House Reef (HR) – This month’s nine new coral frames were deployed at this site; we also removed several Crown of Thorns starfish (COTs).
- Channel (CH) & Blue Hole (BH) – some repair work and monitoring.
At Landaa during February, we transplanted a total of 2250 harvested coral fragments on 41 new coral frames (including a very generous guest donation for 16 frames).
Frame relocated to firmer substrate due to sand damage (lower bar)
Newly positioned frame provides shelter for reef fish (House Reef)
Heart-shaped frames for Valentine’s Day
Coral frame monitoring and health inspection
NOAA Coral Bleaching Watch Maldives
As we enter the seasonally warmer part of the year here in the Maldives (January to April), it is important to keep track of NOAA’s coral bleaching watch guidelines, as the sea surface temperatures are expected to rise slowly through to the end of May.
During the upcoming weeks, we will move from ‘No Stress’ to ‘Watch’, followed by a Coral Bleaching ‘Warning’ status. We continue to monitor our coral frames and the natural reefs around the islands for signs of coral paling and bleaching.
Coral Plates in Aquarium One (plates KH01, KH02, KH05) and Aquarium Two (plates KH03, KH04, KH06)
• KH01 (Galaxea fascicularis; Acropora species) – some paling and mortality, due to water flow issues.
• KH02 (G. fascicularis) – the fragments continue to thrive. The plate was rotated twice this month.
• KH03 (Acropora species) – some paling and mortality, due to water flow issues.
• KH04 (Acropora species, mushroom coral) – the fragments continue to be healthy, although the small mushroom corals have been moved again by the resident crabs.
• KH05 (G.fascicularis) – fragments continue to be healthy. We regularly clean accumulating cyanobacteria (and small sponges).
• KH06 (G.fascicularis) – fragments continue to be healthy.