Project status overview
The Firetti Contemporary sponsored turtle reef was sunk and installed on 15th August 2022 and it settled and acclimatized well.
The turtle has become the home for damsel fish as well as bluestreak cleaner wrasse. The cleaner wrasse are an important part of the reef ecosystem as they attract larger fish as visitors to their cleaning station, where the wrasse will remove ectoparasites and reduces stress hormones for their ‘guests’. They typically also help to increase the size of resident damsel fish populations, which we are observing.
We expect to be able to transplant some larger corals onto the artificial reef structures in the second quarter of 2022 as well as starting environmental monitoring of the presence of indicator species on the reefs.
Small 2 meter long Turtle Artificial Reef, designed and built by James Campbell from Freestyle Divers. This was the first sponsored reef to be placed in the new coral garden.
At end-March 2022, the reef is fully colonized with barnacles, sponge and some Acropora branching coral. This reef will be a target for the Spring 2022 transplanting of coral from the nursery tables.
At end of March 2022, we have two healthy areas of Acropora branching coral growth on the reef, some of the fragments planted last year on our nursery tables are now large enough for us to transplant onto the reef in the warmer Spring waters to promote faster growth.
During the second quarter of 2022, we will be commencing the roving diver surveys and transect belt line surveys, with the aim of recording substrate, coral growth and indicator species. These will be documented and posted quarterly.
First Quarter Update 2022
Click here to read our summary of the first three months of progress on the artificial reef in 2022.