Coral reefs in Oura Bay recovering from El Nino

Coral reefs in Oura Bay recovering from El Nino

Members of the Association for Protecting the Beautiful Sea of Okinawa carried out a survey to check the condition of coral reefs in Oura Bay, Nago City (Photograph taken by Takaya Kinjo).


January 22, 2016 Ryukyu Shimpo

The Association for Protecting the Beautiful Sea of Okinawa carried out a survey to check the condition of coral reefs in Oura Bay, Nago City. The association surveyed two areas in the bay, including Chiribishi where staghorn coral is recovering from the near-extinction caused by El Nino in 1998. The surveys found coral reefs in the areas have recovered well.

The association surveyed Chiribishi over a range of 100 square meters. Focusing on a 50 meter-area where coral reefs thicken they found the degree of cover was 47.5 percent. The association surveyed the remaining 50 meter-area, where there is low coverage and they aim to restore the coral reefs, and found the coverage was only 8.8 percent. The total coral cover of the surveyed area was 28.1 percent.

Mariko Abe of the Nature Conservation Society of Japan said, “There are many Oratosquilla oratoria and butterfly fishes, fostering healthy habitats.” Masayuki Tamaei, co-leader of the Uminchu Association said, “I am looking forward to carrying out further surveys to see how coral reefs will recover.”

The degree of coral reef cover in Okinose area was 42.5 percent.

(English translation by T&CT)

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