1) Cindy Dawson from the Catalina Island Marine Institute in California
reports 1/2 of the planned 30 Reef Balls have been installed in bay this
Summer. The remaining Reef Balls will be put down later this month.
Cindy is delighted with the results, already she reports eels, lobsters,
octopus, fish and algae growth. Monitoring and studies are a continuing
part of the project. This project was funded by a mold grant from the
Reef Ball Foundation.
2) Students from New College in Sarasota cleared the first hurdle to
obtaining a $5,000 grant to study Reef Balls and now await approval from
Sarasota County Commissioners. The plan on studying the best locations to
use Reef Balls under channel markers in Sarasota Bay.
Variable include depth, currents and proximity to habitats. Studied
groups include juvenile fish, adult fish, "bait" peligic fish, stone crabs
and observations on growth patterns.
3) This week, Kevin Conely is "retiring" as the SPARS/Reefkeepers
Manager, the Reef Ball project in British Columbia. He has accepted a
position as Offshore/West Coast Project Coordinator for DFO Oceans
Directorate, and is moving to Ucuelet this weekend to assume his new
duties immediately. His responsibilities include assisting in coordinating
designation of offshore marine protected areas at
Endeavour Hot Vents and Bowie Seamount.
Linda Nichol (Shorekeepers Manager) or Paula Doucette (recent
environmental sciences graduate from Dalhousie University with experience
in diver stewardship projects in the tropics) will be assuming much of the
coordination role for Reefkeepers and probably SPARS over the coming
Thanks Kevin for all the great Reef Ball science!
4) Rusty Thornhill have was awarded a publishing arrangement and will
begin a book centered around Reef Ball endeavors.
5) An article about designed reefs and Reef Balls as an alternative to
"materials of opportunity" and with a photograph of a Reef Ball hit the AP
wire this weekend and was published in many newspapers across the country
this past Tuesday.
Keep those oceans clean!