Reef Check Dominican Republic

Protection and Conservation of Coral Reefs in the Dominican Republic, using marine protected areas as a tool to ensure sustainability of natural resources, and supporting the livelihoods of local communities
Feb 11, 2013

Progress report on lionfish control #6

Vesuvio pez leon flyer
Vesuvio pez leon flyer

Progress Report

 

Reef Check trained volunteers and the Barracudas volunteer team have continued to conduct regular control dives in search for lionfish in La Caleta Marine Park. Also, La Caleta Fishermen Cooperative is regularly catching and selling lion fish to local restaurants to support the national strategy to include that invasive fish in local menus. Also, a local supermarket, El Nacinoal, is now selling lion fish regularly. (http://www.centrocuestanacional.com)

A gala dinner was held at El Vesuvio Malecón Restaurant (http://www.vesuvio.com.do) on December 6th. Guest were able to learn more about this invasive species, while enjoying good music and then get a taste of the fish itself in several gourmet dishes. T-shirts were made to be sold at the restaurant during the entire month.  A second restaurant, La Boheme Bistrot  (https://www.facebook.com/LaBohemeBistrot) joined forces with Reef Check DR, and included lionfish on the menu as well.

Next in line, will be two more restaurants in the Santo Domingo area.

la boheme pez leon flyer
la boheme pez leon flyer
el nacional pez leon
el nacional pez leon

Links:

Feb 1, 2013

Progress report on coral reef restoration in DR

  • Four coral nursery structures were built using metal wire mesh; concrete blocks were used as anchors. Metal frames were covered with resin to delay rust. Heavy-duty tie raps were used to secure frames to blocks. These nurseries were placed in sandy bottom areas in 30 feet of water depth at coordinates 18°26'18.96"N, 69°41'6.18"W. Fragments were transported wrapped in wet paper towels and inside coolers. Once frames were in place, collected coral fragments from the Punta Cana coral nursery were attached to the frames using tie-raps. Some fragments (A. palmatta) collected at Fronton beach, Samana, were secured to cement “cookies”, which were then secured to the frames using tie raps.
  • Four metal frames coral nurseries were built and placed in Las Terrenas (NE DR) at coordinates 19°19'38.86"N and 69°30'51.05"W, as a duplicate for La Caleta MPA nursery. This coral nursery is an initiative financed by Balcones del Atlántico Hotel (Rock Resorts), which is supporting some of the marine conservation activities of Reef Check DR. The objective of this nursery is to share coral fragments between these two locations to distribute any risks and potential damages to either one.
  • One rope coral nursery was built during the training workshop conducted in Punta Cana during April 2012. Due to storms during the 2012 and later availability of coral fragments from the Punta Cana nursery, this nursery will be placed in the water at La Caleta MPA during March 2013. It is estimated that this rope nursery can hold approximately 150 A. cervicornis fragments.
  • Two PVC frames nursery for A. palmata were built during January 2013, and will be placed in the water in Las Terrenas during March 2013. It is estimated that these PVC nursery can hold approximately 75 A. palmata fragments each.

Attachments:
Nov 3, 2012

Controlling Lion Fish Initiative

Derby judging lead by CMS student Maria Fernandez
Derby judging lead by CMS student Maria Fernandez

Reef Check DR continues to undertake monthly Lion Fish control dives at the Submarine National Park, using trained volunteers and using the equipment purchased with the funds provided through Global Giving.

 

 

With combined efforts with the DR Ministry of Environment, and The Nature Conservancy, and the University of teh West Indies in Jamaica, and with funding from the United States agency for international development (USAID), a lion fish management and control workshop was held during August 2012 for over 25 local people, involving divers, GOs and NGOs staff. As part of this efforts, Reef Check DR did 5 lectures for fishermen about lion fish management and control in five locations on DR, Bayahibe, Sajona island, Sanchez, Samana and las Terrenas.

 

 

During the past months Reef Check DR, as part of the Lion Fish Initiative, worked in assisting the Carol Morgan School Students (a local American school) in organizing a lionfish derby (using adecuate sustainable fishing gear) at the National Submarine Park that is co-managed by the foundation. By supporting this kind of derby and involving high school students, many learned the details and the threats that the lionfish has posed in the Caribbean. Ten teams of two individuals were registered and prizes for the smallest, the biggest and the largest catches were awarded. After completing this event, as part of the learning experience, Dr. Ruben Torres, President for Reef Check Dominican Republic, aided in setting up a fish tank with two Lion Fish at Carol Morgan School in order to demonstrate invasive species effects.  He has also been giving talks about this species in our waters at different grade levels.

 

In addition, Reef Check Dominican Republic was recognized at TASTE (Gastronomic Fair in Dominican Republic celebrated October 19th 2012) for our Lion Fish initiative achieving the introduction of this species into our gourmet cooking cuisine. Chefs and Media from all over the country participated in this event recognizing the efforts that we achieved with your assistance.

 

We encourage anyone who wants to keep our continued achievements on the lion fish initiative, which has led to localized control of this invasive species, specially in la Caleta National Marine Park. We hope we can continue these efforts with your kind donations, for more info, visit our website: www.reefcheckdr.org.

Students infront of the Lion Fish tank
Students infront of the Lion Fish tank
TASTE recognition to RCDR!!!
TASTE recognition to RCDR!!!
The biggest Catch at the Lion Fish Fair
The biggest Catch at the Lion Fish Fair
Students infront of the Lion Fish tank
Students infront of the Lion Fish tank

Links:

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