Archive for the ‘coral reefs’ tag

Reef Check Underwater Science

By March 3rd, 2017 at 8:00 am | Comment

“People protect what they love.” ~ Jacques Yves Cousteau

When I was a kid, my family and I used to love watching “The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau.” Every week we’d set out the TV tables and share our dinner with the French marine explorer as he led us on underwater adventures and taught us to appreciate the beauty of science and the sea.

His show is one of the main reasons I became an environmental reporter and earned my scuba diving certification in Monterey Bay, and it made a similar positive impact on millions of other kids and families across the globe.  Read the rest of this entry »

Divers Help Quell the Roar of Invasive Lionfish

By August 7th, 2011 at 10:23 pm | Comment

A lionfish near the Caribbean island of Bonaire (Photo by Anne Pharamond)

A lionfish near the Caribbean island of Bonaire (Photo by Anne Pharamond)

It seems strange to mark the location of a fish, doesn’t it? They can swim and move away from the marker, right? I wonder while standing on a dock waiting for the boat that will take about ten of us out to a reef. There, we will scuba dive for fun and also mark the locations of lionfish, an invasive species in the Caribbean.

Volunteer divers on the Dutch island of Bonaire are helping Bonaire National Marine Park eliminate invasive lionfish from its coral reefs by marking the locations where the fish are found. A diver who spots a lionfish is instructed to attach a small flag, provided by the park, to a rock near the fish.

The answers to my questions about marking fish locations become clear once I splash into the water and see the fish and flag markers for myself.  Swimming along sections of reef, I saw dozens of flags that had been placed there by divers and each had one or more lionfish hovering nearby. It turns out that lionfish don’t stray far from their particular nook of reef. They stay near the markers.

It’s illegal to hunt or in any way harm marine life in the waters surrounding Bonaire. Except, that is, for lionfish.

Read the rest of this entry »