Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Coral Planting

The moment I stepped off the boat and onto the arrival jetty at the Sipadan Water Village Resort, I felt that magical giddy high of euphoria again. I remember how and why I fell in love with this place six months ago.

We were lucky to be able to have a chalet facing the open sea again, from where we were treated to pretty cool sunrises in the mornings.

In conjunction with the 12th Mabul Marine Day and 3rd Mabul Marine Week, which was held from the 18 - 25 July 2009, one of the highlights of our trip was the coral planting activity.

Broken coral pieces were collected for the purpose of the transplanting. Each participant was given a piece of coral, tagged with our name.

I was Dooren Loo. I've had many variations of my name being mis-spelled; Dorren, Dorin, Dorine... but Dooren sure beats it all.

With our coral piece identified, we were all given a data sheet to fill in with our particulars, and the details of our coral.

I had a piece of staghorn coral (scientific name Acropora), a branching coral with cylindrical branches protruding out and up. The staghorn is one of the fastest growing corals, with branches increasing in length by 10-20 centimetres a year.

After we have completed the data sheet, it was time for the actual planting at the Old House Reef II on Mabul.

Our guide, Bobby, began by helping us prepare a cement mixture of sorts which we will use as a base. This mixture will then harden over time, providing a sturdy base for the coral.

The new corals are to be transplated on surfaces which is solid and firm, like a rock.

And this is me with my staghorn.

No other corals were hurt or killed in the process of planting this one.

This is Lynette's coral after it's firmly secured.

And a compulsory group shot with Bobby after we surfaced from the dive - Top Row L-R: Colin, Bee Yong, Albert, Lynette, Matthew, Duke and unknown Caucasian, Bottom Row L-R: Shen, Doreen, Bobby

Posted by Doreen at 12:10 pm