Coral reefs the world over are suffering, primarily from human activities like overfishing, destructive fishing methods, pollution, and mining for construction. Even divers can play a role in the acceleration of their death, by not paying attention to their buoyancy and finning right into these vital ecosystems. Because coral reefs provide habitat for hundreds of juvenile and adult marine species, it is of the utmost importance that we take all necessary measures to ensure their legacy continues.
Coral farming is beginning to surge as a viable solution for areas that are seeing a decline in corals overall. Often carried out by volunteer divers alongside experienced marine biologists, coral farming, or gardening, is the practice of separating one large head of coral into smaller fragments and placing them in an established underwater nursery to grow into bigger corals. When the fragment has grown into a healthy coral head of its own, it is replaced in a natural reef area where it will continue to be monitored and cared for as it flourishes. Although this process can take an average of 2 years, it has met with much success in many parts of the world, particularly in tropical regions that are experiencing the effects of the aforementioned activities. Take a look at this project in Fiji for a better look at how ocean conservationists are working diligently to save our coral reefs.
Image via MyFWCmedia