Day 5- Coral Transplantation


Today we started off the day by heading over to long bay to harvest the coral fragments we would use to transplant at the new reef location. We were briefed on the type of coral, stag horn, we would be looking for, and the condition that the coral should be in to harvest. We were told that what we should be looking for is staton coral that is only slightly damaged or coral that is already fragmented and on the bottom. My partner, Sean, and I first had to swim over to the edge of the reef, where we would find the fragments for replanting. Once we reached the reef, we descended to the bottom which was only around 10 feet, so it was a really shallow dive. We started slowly combing over the edge of the reef looking for the small fragments that would be on the floor. We saw many different types of coral that had fallen, which we were able to help prop back up, but it was a while before we found any stag horn coral. Once we found the stag horn coral we picked it up with the glove that we brought and took it over to the container that was already holding some. While on the dive, we were also able to see a pair of jack knifes the were swimming around the area that the container was in. Once we had enough for transplantation, we started to head over to Baraka point, where the camera was. When we arrived at Baraka point, we had lunch and moved onto the next dive. For the next dive, we had to swim out to where the camera was to place the coral around it. Marine 2 earlier in the day, while we were out harvesting the coral, prepped the spot by cleaning it out for the coral. I was handed a small piece of the stag horn and descended to a rock that already had the epoxy placed on it. Once I put the coral on the hardened epoxy, Mr. Kirby helped place more around the base to support it once in place. I held it in that position for around 2 or 3 minutes while the epoxy hardened. Once it finished hardening, I ascended to the surface and headed back to the boat. In total we put down 8 pieces of coral. When marine 2 went out to take measurements, Sean and I went out with Jeremy to look around the reef. While looking around, we came across a lion fish so Jeremy went up to get his speargun. When he came back down, he shot it and placed it underneath a rock. We finished up and headed to the surface and made our way back to the marina.