Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic

by Reef Check Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic
Coral Restoration in the Dominican Republic

As we all now know, Covid-19 Pandemic brought drastic changes to our daily lives, and also for the Planet and its natural environments. Due to reduced human activities as results of global wide lockdown measures, nature was able to rest from humans, news came quickly about nature taking over its space, its state, and scientist scramble to measure this unprecedented event. As we knew that corals and fish were not going to show mayor changes in just a couple of months, we decide to measure water quality around tourist areas of our country during lock down (when humans were not around), and compare it to open water and also to past water quality studies (when humans were around). Results showed that the oceans were able to clean themselves as quickly as in 1 month, showing how resilient nature can be, and that if we let natural resources rest for a bit, many good changes can come.

But climate change is still around, and despite almost no humans were in our coasts, we had the hotters summers ever recorded, which made the oceans warmer than ever. As expected, many corals suffered bleaching (expelling their symbiotic algae, which given them about 90% of their energy intake), and never recovered, resulting in mass mortality in most if not all of our coral nurseries.

It is time to rethink how we fix nature: either by actively restoring it, or perhaps finding new ways to just let it be, without us.

We inform you that this project will be de activated, and a new strategy will be posted soon on this incredible venue for collaboration, GlobalGiving. We thank each and every donor in a very special way, and we hope to see each of you, side by side in our new strategy coming out soon.

Sincerely,

Ruben Torres

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Due to Covid-19 restrictions, no actions were taken during this period. We appreciate We appreciate the donations received, mostly recurring and few new ones. We hope to be able to go back out to sea, as given extremely high sea termperatures we fear many corals will die from bleaching. Stay tune for next report.

On a different project, and taking advantage of covid-restrictions that included a drastic decline in tourism activities, we might be able to see some positve environmental responses as a result of this. A water quality study is being conducted to assess potential water quality improvement due to the drastic reduction in water use for the reduced human activities.

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Tagged coral fragment
Tagged coral fragment

During this reporting period, a total of 9 donations were received, 6 of them recurring. A total of USD507.76 was raised, for which we thank all donors.

Nursery Location: Las Terrenas, Portillo Residences

Last Monitoring Visit: Februray 6th

Next Planned Visit: July 2nd

Status: A frist visit was conducted after the installation of this nursery. Given temporal conditions of heavy rains, lots of sediments were produced, which resulted in some of the coral fragments to die. Suriving coral fragments were then tagged with serial numbers for follow up moniting.

Given the COVID-19 pandemic, local activities were halted, which limited our movement and travel, and also the use of boats to conduct more visits to other locations. We will resumen our activities once conditions allow.

Tagged coral fragment
Tagged coral fragment
Portillo Residences Coral Nursery Aerial View
Portillo Residences Coral Nursery Aerial View
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During this period, a total of $437.14 was received in donations from 13 donors, 4 of the recurring. We thank them all for their support.

Nursery Location: Las Galeras

Last Monitoring Visit: December 10th
Next Planned Visit: May 2020
Status: Some coral fragments have died due to rough seas conditions as cold fronts moved in the north coast.

Nursery Location: Las Terrenas
Last Monitoring Visit: January 26th
Next Planned Visit: February 2020
Status: A new coral nursery was installed in front of El Portillo Residences to start an adopt-a-coral program with properties owners. This nursery would serve as part of the current snorkeling trail.

Nursery Location: Montecristi
Last Monitoring Visit: January 31st
Next Planned Visit: June 2020
Status: Poor water conditions rain runoff and also rough seas conditions as cold fronts moved in the north coast caused mortality in this coral nursery. A new location is being scouted.

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EXPEDIA group installing a nursery in Boca Chica
EXPEDIA group installing a nursery in Boca Chica

Nursery Location: Bayahibe

Last Monitoring Visit: October 2019

Next Planned Visit: January 2020

Status: The Bayahibe rope nurseries are regularly maintained by our local partners Coral Point Diving, with the staghorn coral colonies continuing to thrive.

 

Nursery Location: Palmar de Ocoa

Last Monitoring Visit: October 2019

Next Planned Visit: January 2020

Status: The rope nurseries were cleaned, nursery operation continues as usual with our local partner Rebecca Garcia

 

Nursery Location: Las Galeras

Last Monitoring Visit: May 20th

Next Planned Visit: January 2020

Status: Coral fragments continue to grow, a re-fragmentation is needed or the next visit.

 

Nursery Location: Boca Chica

Last Monitoring Visit: Oct 4th

Next Planned Visit: January 2020

Status: A group of employees from EXPEDIA GROUP joined our efforts to install a new coral nursery built from cement, given the recent bleaching event in the south coast, no coral fragments were attached.

 

Nursery Location: Montecristi

Last Monitoring Visit: September 21st

Next Planned Visit: January 2020

Status: Our newest nursery, installed in collaboration with the Dominican Fisheries Consortium and Galleon Divers. Torrential rains made it difficult to locate or work on the coral nursery given very poor visibility.

 

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Organization Information

Reef Check Dominican Republic

Location: Santo Domingo, DN - Dominican Republic
Website:
Project Leader:
Ruben Torres
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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