Diving in the Bahamas

Research Mission
Snorkel for science! Help researchers survey coral reef health on a remote Bahamian island.

Situation Report
San Salvador Island, Bahamas - Right now, coral reefs are at serious risk due to climate change, coastal development, overfishing, and other environmental stressors continue. One of the first signs that corals may be in trouble is coral bleaching, when symbiotic algae living within the colonial animals are tossed out during environmental stress, leaving the coral colorless and without nutrition. If prolonged, bleaching kills coral, with drastic impacts on marine biodiversity, fisheries, tourism, and shore protection. Then there are coral diseases, which have been increasing with alarming regularity. Scientists John Rollino (Earth Tech, Inc.), Dr. Garriet Smith (University of South Carolina at Aiken) and Thomas McGrath (Corning Community College) are in their 14th year of their search for better understanding of the reefs and the causes of coral afflictions.