How awesome is this message from Erich Bartels (Staff Scientist/Program Manager/Dive Safety Officer for Mote Marine Laboratory)? Check out how many coral colonies were planted on the reef and created in the nursery!
“CWVC/SCUBAnauts – I just wanted to take a moment, now that the dust has settled, to thank all of you for the time and effort that went into planning last weeks restoration dives with Mote. Please pass along my thanks to all of the CWVC divers and their support staff, along with all of the kids and dive pros with SNI, for all of their help and assistance in the water last week. Despite some challenges coordinating boat schedules, along with weather that didn’t always cooperate, we still managed to complete an amazing amount of work….in all, through the combined efforts of CWVC, SNI, and Mote over the three day period, we were able to outplant 500 new colonies of staghorn coral, as well as create more than 2,200 new staghorn colonies in our underwater nursery. In addition, more than 60 new anchors for our coral “trees” were installed in the nursery, which will provide the desperately needed infrastructure for expanding our staghorn “spawning nursery”, establishing a dedicated area for our newly developed effort to propagate and outplant elkhorn coral, as well as creating a permanent location within the nursery to be used for Mote and Capt. Hooks to develop a community-based restoration program to further engage the dive community in Mote’s ongoing restoration efforts year-round.
Thank you all again, and a big thank you to Kim and the entire staff at Capt. Hooks for their support, flexibility, and for ensuring that everyone had a safe and enjoyable experience. Thank you!!!”