October 12, 2011

Reef Check Puerto Rico To Take Off After EcoDiver Training


By Nikole Ordway, Reef Check EcoDiver Course Director

In September, Nikole Ordway, Reef Check Florida Course Director, trained 3 volunteers from Puerto Rico as EcoDivers. These new Reef Check divers will launch Reef Check surveys in Puerto Rico.

The training started with a classroom session at Force-E Dive Centers in Pompano Beach, Florida. As part of the class they practiced a dry land survey where pictures of reef fish, invertebrates and impacts are placed along a transect line. This is a great way to practice before jumping in the water where communication is a bit more challenging.

The students geared up the next day for their dives on the reef to practice their surveying skills. The two sites they looked at had lots of reef fish, making it easy to practice which fish were indicators and non-indicators. Also on this reef there were a few bleached corals, which were useful to show the difference between bleached corals and other impacts like predation on corals.

To wrap up they took their EcoDiver ID exams and all three of them passed with flying colors! If you have a team of divers wanting to start a Reef Check team in your area, contact Reef Check Headquarters and they will put you in touch with a Trainer near you!

Congratulations to Veronica, Sylmarie, and Alejandro…Reef Check Puerto Rico’s newest team!