Coral Reef Monitoring
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Coral Reef Monitoring. What is a Coral?. Animal, vegetable or mineral?. Conservation of Coral Reefs. Monitoring is necessary to decrease the decline of reefs Coral reefs have a high biodiversity

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What is a Coral?

Animal, vegetable or mineral?

Conservation of Coral Reefs

  • Monitoring is necessary to decrease the decline of reefs

  • Coral reefs have a high biodiversity

  • They provide a habitat for a wide variety of animals and plant species and are also a food source for many organisms

  • Protects coastlines

Studying coral reefs:

  • Compare difference in places where fish are collected to a place where they are not; look over time.

    • lots of different people collect data

    • community effort

Reef Check

A volunteer, community-based coral reef monitoring and education program that promotes coral reef conservation and preservation throughout the Main Hawaiian Islands.

Location: Kaneohe, HI

Near the intersection of Kam. Hwy and Lulani St.


Kaneohe, HI

Transect Belt Study



Snorkeler/diver swims down the transect line and counts abundance of orgs






Snorkeler/diver swims down the transect line and every 5 meters counts % cover of species

Fish ID

  • Butterfly fish

  • Blueline Snapper

  • Jacks

  • Goatfish

  • Parrotfish

  • Trigger fish

  • Yellow Tang

  • Wrasses

  • Angelfish

  • Snapper

  • Morey eel

  • Orange spine unicorn fish

  • Peacock grouper

Invert ID

Pencil Urchin


Collector Urchin

Triton’s Trumpet

Banded Coral Shrimp




Coral ID

  • Substrate Codes

    • HC hard coral

    • SC soft coral

    • RKC recently killed coral

    • NIA nutrient indicator algae

    • SP sponge

    • RC rock

    • RB rubble

    • SD sand

    • SI silt/clay

    • OT other

Coral ID

  • Rice

  • Finger

  • Lobe

  • Mushroom

  • Cauliflower


Crustose, turf, invasive

Montipora capitata (Rice coral)

Pocillopora meandrina (Finger Coral)

Porites lobata (Lobe Coral)

Fungia scutaria (Mushroom Coral)

Pocillopora meandrina

(Cauliflower Coral)

Crustose Algae

Pink and encrusting


  • Coral Damage

  • Disease

  • Bleaching

  • Trash

Coral Damage


Coral Damage



  • Hooks

  • Fishing line and gear

  • Plastic bags

  • Six pack soda holder

Coral Disease

Black Band

White band

What Can You Do to Protect Reefs?

  • Support reef-friendly businesses.

  • Don't pollute and encourage others to do the same.

  • Learn more about reefs and educate others with your knowledge.

  • Report dumping, poaching, and other illegal activities.

  • Never anchor directly on reefs.

What Can You Do to Protect Reefs?

  • Avoid overfishing and other destructive resource extraction methods.

  • Avoid touching the reef.

  • Encourage reef-friendly legislation.

  • Be a responsible aquarium owner.

  • Support conservation organizations, agencies, and programs.

What Can You Do to Protect Reefs?

  • Support the establishment of marine protected areas.

  • Promote responsible development.

  • Promote reef monitoring and basic research aimed at protecting coral reefs and their inhabitants.