Launched by Kanuhura in August 2014, the main aim of the project is to protect and develop the coral around the resort, and create awareness about the vulnerability of coral reefs.This is particularly important in the Maldives, a country that has been built entirely by coral reefs, and contains some of the world’s richest marine and coastal biodiversity. It is also one of the most coral reef dependent countries in the world. Tourism and tuna fishing are the main industries in the Maldives, both of which are heavily dependent on coral reefs. The reefs also act as a natural barrier, protecting these low-lying islands from ocean waves and against erosion. Providing food, jobs, and income the continued health and sustainable use of these reefs is very important for the Maldives.

To implement this ambitious initiative, Kanuhura Resort Maldives has been working hand in hand with Seamarc, a marine consultancy company based in Male. They have developed Reefscapers – a unique coral propagation technique which has proved to be one the most successful in the world!

Coral Frames

In 1998, unusually warm oceanic waters, resulting from an exceptionally strong El Nino event, caused the coral to bleach across a large proportion of the Maldivian Reefs. 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. Seamarc developed an artificial reef system called Coral Frames.

These Coral Frames are instrumental in enhancing the biodiversity of existing reef habitats as well as generating new ones. They provide a suitable substrate for coral fragments to grow on and help to avoid sedimentation as well as reducing coral predation.

The 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.

How does it work ?

Sponsored by the resort and 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.

Coral Frame Locations

The majority of the coral frames will be placed on the resort’s 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. Coral frames will also enhance biodiversity by attracting and recruiting more varied fish and invertebrate life to the area.

After a few years of growth, the corals on the frames will be mature enough to spawn and produce small coral larvae. These larvae will drift in the ocean for a few days, becoming part of the plankton, before settling onto a natural reef were they will grow into a new colony, thus helping to populate existing reefs in the Maldives.

As the project develops we hope to increase the number of frames all around the resort.

Your Chance

Join our Coral Frame Sponsorship Programme

We’ll make and transplant your frame, and then upload 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 to you in person.


Sponsor a Frame


Here you can see the details and photographs of all our Reefscapers coral frames that have been transplanted around Kanuhura Resort, Maldives.

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.

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