Heya! I’m Lonne, nice to meet you :D
I’m a half English, half Dutch third year university student studying Environmental Science for Sustainable Energy and Technology in Breda, The Netherlands. As part of my study, I had the opportunity to gain some experience working for a few months, and what better place to do so than with Marine Conservation Society Seychelles?
During my internship with MCSS, I’ve worked on two coral restoration projects - one of which being located on Cerf Island. Having spent just over a month with the CI team, I can say I sure have learnt a lot about the reef and the threats it faces.
My early mornings are spent ridding the beach of litter which gets washed up on shore. You’d be surprised by how much litter actually comes our way, and the bizarre things we find washing up... Odd shoes, endless amounts of polystyrene and all sorts of (empty) alcohol bottles! It’s important for waste to be appropriately recycled/ disposed of, so it’s not in the way of harming life or ruining the aesthetics of beautiful beaches.
Once the beach is clean, we educate clients about the projects in progress on the island and give them an introduction to the reef before going out for a group snorkel. Being located in a Marine Park, the reef at Cerf Island is rich with various coral and fish species, which breathtakingly decorate the water with colour.
Through the completion of various workshops during my time on Cerf, my knowledge of corals and other reef fauna has grown immensely! Having seen the results first hand (bleached, dead and broken coral) I never realised how various daily activities can have such a direct impact on reefs as a whole! By making changes such as cutting down the use of fossil fuels and increasing education amongst people, threats faced by the reef can be reduced. Having resorts and hotels host such initiatives, as at Cerf Island Resort, also integrates members of the public into the understanding how change can make long term positive differences.
Through maintaining and expanding the coral restoration project, and it’s incredibly satisfying to think my contributions will help rebuild parts of the reef lost in the major 1998 and 2016 bleaching events.
As my internship comes to an end, I look forward to applying the experiences and knowledge I’ve gained into my future studies along with influencing the career path I’ll choose to follow.
Hello I’m Emma!
I have just graduated from Plymouth University where I studied Marine Biology and Coastal Ecology. I wanted to volunteer with the Marine Conservation Society Seychelles to gain valuable experience that will help me progress in a career of marine conservation and research. I have been with MCSS for 2 months now and have spent most of my time at the Fishermen’s Cove Project helping to maintain and monitor both in-situ and ex-situ coral nurseries, as well as taking guests on guided snorkels. I am now also splitting my time with the Cerf Island Conservation Project where I am two days a week Mondays and Tuesdays. Although, both projects involve guided snorkels and monitoring and maintaining coral nurseries it is great to be able to spend time in different places and on different reefs. Working at Cerf has also given me the opportunity to improve my coral and fish identification, which I will need for conducting reef surveys next year when the weather is nice again. As well as the academic side I am trying to improve my free diving, which needs a lot of improving, and am taking any opportunity I can to dive. I will be with MCSS until June so will hopefully get to spend some time down south learning about the turtles, and maybe even get to see some nesting and others hatching Blue Planet style. Fingers crossed, I’ll keep you posted.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.