Did You Know ?
- Coral reefs are so valuable to the fishing and tourism industries, as well as protecting shorelines from storm damage, that destroying just 1 kilometer of coral reef means the loss of between $137,000 to $1,200,000 over a 25-year period, according to the World Resource Institute. And yet, nearly 60% of the world’s coral reefs are threatened by human activity.
- Though corals are animals, they do rely on photosynthesis to survive. But the coral polyps aren’t doing the actual photosynthesising. Microscopic algae, or zooxanthellae, live within the cells lining the digestive cavity of the polyp. As much as 90% of the energy a polyp needs comes from this symbiotic relationship. The other 10 % comes from hunting the polyp does by extending its tentacles to catch prey.
- Coral reefs also play an important role in helping to manage carbon dioxide levels. This makes them of great benefit to the world’s population.
- Wherever coral reefs grow, the sea bed is more stable. Reefs help sea grass and other sea plants survive in the area. The more plants are growing on the sea bed, the less impact storms and surges will have on seabed too. All of the plants that are protected by the coral reef prevent the bottom of the bed from being washed out deeper, changing the depth and temperature of the water near the shore. The sea bed washing out can also cause significant erosion of the shoreline.
- Coral reefs also help to improve the surrounding water quality. They act as a kind of filter that traps things floating in the water, which makes for cleaner water all around.
El Nino 2016 Effects and our Initiative
The extent of the 2016 bleaching, which also affected reefs in other parts of the Indian ocean and Pacific, was so severe that it was subsequently named the ‘Third Global Coral Bleaching Event’.
With much of the coral having died from this event, artificial reef projects have become a valuable tool for restoring reefs and nurturing them back to health. AMAYA Kuda Rah have partnered with Reefscapers, a marine consultancy company based in Malé. Their unique coral propagation project has proved to be one of the most successful in the world, using ‘coral frames’ to make it easier for everyone to help save the reefs.
How Coral Frames Work
The coral frames are produced on a local island in Baa atoll, and provide an alternative livelihood to the 250 inhabitants whose only previous source of employment was fishing.
The majority of the coral frames will be placed on our house reef, to improve the overall health of the marine environment.
The coral from these frames may eventually grow onto the natural reef substrate and therefore improve the coral cover and form a barrier to better improve the marine habitat and increase the number of fish species.
Corals Need Protection
Corals need protection from threatening forces such as pollution and global warming and here is how you can help.
Sponsored by the resort and our guests, the transplantation process involves attaching coral fragments onto a metal frame, which grow and mature into new colonies. The fragments are collected from broken natural reef corals, and later harvested from our own mature coral frames for the “second generation”. The proceeds from every frame go into an Environmental Fund to support the resort’s marine conservation research programs and local community environmental initiatives.
The growth rate is amazing! In just 2-3 weeks, the coral has attached itself onto the frame, and 2 months later, new coral growth is evident and fish have moved in! For every frame, we follow a strict monitoring process, taking regular photographs of the coral growth, and identifying the marine life that starts to colonise the frames. By propagating the most successful species, we are developing ever-more resistant coral offspring, better adapted to withstand higher sea water temperatures and so help the reefs in their fight against global warming.
Want to be involved?
Join our coral frame sponsorship programme ! We will make and transplant your frame, and then upload your photos of it onto this site every six months for you to monitor its progress. Then when you next visit, we’ll be sure to take you out on a guided snorkel to show it you in person.
Reefscapers Coral Frames at AMAYA Kuda Rah
Here you can see the details and photographs of all our Reefscapers coral frames that have been transplanted around AMAYA.
We regularly check and maintain all of our frames, and photograph them every 6 months to monitor the growth of the coral fragments as they mature and flourish.
How to view your frame photographs: Enter your name or email address or coral frame tag number into the search box and press ‘Submit’. For example, type a 3-digit tag number such as 012 and press submit.
Thank you to all our frame sponsors for supporting our important coral reef propagation work.