In March 2017, we began transplantation of coral fragments on a large scale, an undertaking we call Project 250. To assist us, we had the services of Homer Hernandez, an expert in coral reef restoration, who also trained our local volunteers to carry on the good work.
Over the course of 2017, Project 250 plans to recover loose coral fragments from the seabed and plant them on 150 Biri Buds and 100 domes and rectangular cages of iron rebar. Some of the Biri Buds were already deployed in the last two years, but without coral fragments attached. Most, however, will be new additions.
In March of this year, we planted 165 coral fragments, and achieved a 95% survival rate. Lesions quickly healed, and calcification showed that the fragments were attaching themselves to their substrates.
Our rebar cages measure approximately 3 m long by 2 m wide and 1 metre tall, and hold 100 or more fragments each. Fragments are also being attached to numerous individual rebar sticks in the seabed, and concrete nails driven into dead massive corals. Together, the Biri Buds, rebar structures and other devices will form a coral garden with a holy cross as its centrepiece.
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