When it comes to coral farming there are two stories that are truly inspirational: meet Coral Gardeners and Coral Vita
The ocean kids who call themselves coral gardeners have a beautiful dream: to restore the coral reefs of their home island: Moorea, French Polynesia
According to marine biologist Luiz Rocha from the California Academy of Sciences over 50-60% of the coral around Moorea and Tahiti are bleached. This fact did not discourage a group of young friends from Polynesia, who began Coral Gardeners in 2017 with the hopes of rebuilding their world famous home. Reefs are home to 25% of all marine life, they are an indispensable habitat as well as a fragile and complex animal.
So here Coral Gardener’s execution plan: Inspire through education and restore through coral farming
The group holds seminars and workshops at local venues: schools, Universities, town halls etc.. Educating people on both the severity of the situation as well as the appropriate care of coral. The second part of their strategy is coral gardening. They do this by looking for alive coral that has been broken off by tourists or fishermen and then fixing it onto bamboo. Later the fragments are planted in underwater coral nurseries where under supervision these coral fragments will grow. Once large enough the gardeners replant the cuttings onto degraded areas of the reef, recreating reef habitats. This allows life to return as well as strengthens the reef against future damage.
How can you get involved with coral gardeners? Adopt a Coral!
- Create and give a name to your adopted coral.
- The gardeners will plant your coral in the Moorea Lagoon.
- You will then receive a certificate of adoption for your coral, including the location where we planted it!
Coral Vita is attempting something that we could describe as the vertical farming of coral. With high-tech land-based coral farming and assisted evolution techniques they “improve coral resiliency to changing oceanic conditions that threaten reef health. Corals that are native to each restoration project can be raised to be more tolerant to threats such as warming temperatures or acidification, as we can control their growing conditions.”
This type of coral farming enables the company to better prepare for large-scale restoration. Their focus: the Carribbean. So far they have also offered reef restoration solutions to an array of partners: from resorts to marine parks.