Project Baseline and the Coral Restoration Foundation (CRF Bonaire) Team to Restore Coral Communities

Project Baseline (PB) and the Coral Restoration Foundation (CRF Bonaire) have teamed up together to restore coral reefs in the Caribbean. 
CRF Bonaire is a nonprofit conservation effort committed to restoring the Staghorn and Elkhorn reefs. These reefs suffer from disease outbreaks with losses compounded locally by increased predation, bleaching, algae overgrowth, and hurricanes.  The organization has helped restore these reefs by growing coral in offshore nurseries for several months. The coral colonies are then planted onto a degraded portion of the reef, called restoration sites.  Once the plantation is completed these sites are monitored and shared through the PB database and web-based interface. PB’s spatial data mapping tool is highly beneficial to aquatic conservation efforts. The data mapping allows Bonaire to track the progress of the restoration both visually and spatially  According to PB Program Manager Vanessa Belz, “Bonaire recognizes the value of hosting data and images in the PB database,” Belz said. “We provide a data hosting and mapping platform that not all organizations have access to or can develop on their own.”
The collaboration between PB and CRF Bonaire is mutually beneficial.  PB is able to improve its reputation as a reliable source of underwater observations by sharing data that is formally collected and studied by CRF Bonaire. Meanwhile CRF Bonaire is able to share data in a spatial context. The partnership of the two organizations supports current research taking place while easily communicating the success or failure of coral transplants with the public.  With extensive technology in place, the efforts of both PB and CRF Bonaire are working to improve the condition of coral communities throughout the Caribbean.

-submitted by: Taylor Bruce
Project Baseline has been at the forefront of increasing awareness of Florida reef decline as well as monitoring the health index for nearly 70 marine and freshwater environments world-wide since 2009. Watch as Project Baseline takes CNN underwater for special media coverage on Florida reefs -