Its been a rather busy time here at CICP. Have a read below to get a perspective of our work through Sara's eyes.
"Here we are with another post! It has already been a month since I arrived in Seychelles. Time is flying! So far I enjoyed very much my time here, except for an ill-fated weekend!
The weather is changing; currents, rain and winds are bringing cooler waters and hopefully this will help our corals, which have been hit hard by this bleaching event. I do my best to explain the present situation anytime I take clients on our snorkel trails, showing them the effects that climate change is having on our oceans. It’s encouraging to see that some of them were already aware of this issue and having the chance to raise their knowledge on this topic is of great motivation for my role here.
In the first two weeks I learnt how to identify the various species of corals, fish and invertebrates that inhabits our reef. There’s a lovely heart shaped brain coral (Platygyra sp.) just in front of Cerf Resort :D. During my snorkels at Cerf Island I’ve had lucky encounters with stingrays, a moray, a puffer fish, flatworms, nudibranchs, lionfish, barracudas, lots of reef fish and turtles!
Speaking of turtles, we managed to use the I3S (Interactive Individual Identification software) to create a database with the photos of individuals of turtles encountered around Sainte Anne Marine National Park. The scutes on the turtle’s head (left and right) act the way a human’s fingerprint does. We can use the software to point out the patterns, the software then runs an algorithm based on the fingerprint file created, and we then visually compare the results to see if there is a match or a new individual.
Last week we took part as the MCSS team at the International Day for Biological Diversity Exhibition in Victoria, in collaboration with UNDP, GEF, GOP and ICS. It was very inspiring to look at the presentations and drawings of the local primary and secondary school kids on their perception of the ocean and what we can do for its conservation.
What else? We have been also busy with the beach cleanings, the coral nurseries maintenance/monitoring and with the reef surveys to assess the substrate composition of Cerf Island reefs. Last, but not least, we are very excited to announce that we built our first rebar frame and we can’t wait to place it in the water for our coral reef restoration project! "