This month is the dawn of a new beginning for coral reef rehabilitation at Thudufushi Diamonds Resort. Our latest frame number 94 is now the start of our new cutting-edge project that pertains to coral reef rehabilitation. Our mission remains the same, to provide the much needed stability for naturally or unnaturally broken fragments in an act to return a degraded ecosystem back to its predisturbance state. In our new project we are using new and innovative designed structures that are inexpensive and more practical on a large scale. These structures also allows for better unrestricted water flow, trapping broken coral fragments and rubble, it effectively stabilize the substratum and as a result support high coral recruitment, growth and diversity. Following the methods and design of a recent large-scale coral reef rehabilitation project in Indonesia, we will be placing these structures in a large degraded area of our reef in order to create a chain that will stretch easily over 150 meters with the aim of stabilizing the damaged section by increasing the live coral cover and restoring it to its once pristine condition.
Their hexagonal shape consist of the same materials as before which is reinforced steel bars (rebars) covered in proxy glue and coral sand, however our new “spiders” are much smaller and lighter compared to the triangle shape used before, which make its construction cheaper. The benefit of the spiders are that they can be placed in much shallower water without being exposed during the low tide, they are more stable on uneven surfaces and they are more effective for large-scale restoration. Results from the study showed that the live coral cover on the structures increased from less than 10% initially to greater than 60% between 2013 and 2015. Although this large-scale study consisted of approximately 11,000 structures covering up to 7,000 m2 our smaller project is only the beginning and if successful we will implement these structures over greater areas of the reef.
Images in the slideshow below show the new design of the spiders, our first frame of the project as well as the location for the first chain in the lagoon.
and for the technical report