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Reviving Jamaica's Coral
News Bytes 09/20/2019 22 Comments

Everton Simpson squints at the Caribbean Sea from his motorboat. He’s headed for the deep indigo of the coral reefs—and an unmarked spot that he knows as the "coral nursery." Simpson and other divers carefully tend to this underwater garden in an effort to save Jamaica’s coral reefs.

After a series of natural and man-made disasters in the 1980s and 1990s, Jamaica lost 85% of its once-bountiful coral reefs. Many scientists thought that most of Jamaica's reef had been permanently overtaken by seaweed.

But today, the corals and tropical fish are slowly reappearing, thanks partly to a series of interventions.

''It's like a forest under the sea," Simpson says. He swims down 25 feet carrying a pair of metal shears, fishing line, and a plastic crate.

On the ocean floor, small coral fragments dangle from suspended ropes, like socks hung on a laundry line. Simpson cautiously plucks off snails and fireworms that feast on immature coral.

When a fragment grows to about the size of a human hand, Simpson collects them in his crate to "transplant" onto a reef. It’s a little like planting each blade of grass in a lawn separately. The goal is to jumpstart a reef’s natural growth. So far, it's working.

The delicate labor of the coral gardener is only one part of restoring a reef. Convincing lifelong fishermen to limit when and where they fish and controlling waste dumped into the ocean are trickier.

"The coral are coming back; the fish are coming back," says Stuart Sandin, a marine biologist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in California. "It's probably some of the most vibrant coral reefs we've seen in Jamaica since the 1970s."

God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm. — Genesis 1:21

(Diver Lenford DaCosta cleans up lines of staghorn coral at an underwater coral nursery inside the Oracabessa Fish Sanctuary in Jamaica. AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

 

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Most recent comments

First Comment!

Yay! Save the reefs!

First Comment!

I'm so glad they are working to save the coral! Hopefully the fishermen realize how important this is and cooperate.

1st comment

Yay!! I'm so glad that people are working so hard to save the coral reefs. I hope that the coral continues to grow and that we are more careful with ocean plants and creatures!

oops

Sorry Beth G. and Bella C., I guess we all commented at the same time. LOL

@Lena P

LOL

Hope it works!

I hope this works!!

@ Lena P

Don't worry about it Lol these things happen on the internet!

Janna

I'm glad their saving the coral! I want to go scuba diving sometime!

My name is Rebecca Hawthorne

Yay!!!

I agree with Janna! I would

I agree with Janna! I would love to go scuba diving it just isn't financially possible for us! We have six kids that's why.

to above

LOL!! I have 2 siblings so we might be able to do it

@ viven

Wow!!! We only have three!

@vivien, leah & nadia

i am the oldest of 6 kids. and i love to snorkel but i got braces so the snorkel just wont work. swimming is just about my favorite sport, excepting soccer of course. scuba diving sounds awesome!***************************************

To above

i'm the oldest of 3 kids! I love to snorkel too!! I love piano more though,

Janna

@ Nadia A. How many years have you done the piano? I have done it for 6 years..............well made to do it for 6 years, I don't like it...........lol.

To above

I have been playing for...um......6 years. I think mabey more. I did it my parents didn't want a piano. But my mom said. "Nadia if you really want a piano then pray to the lord to change our hearts to buy you a piano" and I did I prayed for 3years strait! After that my parent bought be a piano. Then I prayed for a another year about piano lessons.then I did them and I have been doing them for 2 years or so. I got to play in church 2 times.
Sorry if I sound like I'm bragging I didn't mean this that way. I really don't know if this s soinds bratty or not.

Janna

@ Nadia A. No, your fine. I actually have to play in church in like 2 weeks. I hate it......I get super nervous and I feel sick and I get cold sweat. I think I've played in church like 10 times probably............It's fine playing a duet with someone though because I feel like I'm not the only one nervous and then if I mess up the person I'm playing with's music will usually cover it up. lol.

To above

I love playing piano but the piano,lady keeps telling me. Would you like to play in church? I always say yes ma,am then sh never let's me! Every one in my church has been asking me when I would play and I always say... well I would like to but Mrs so and so has not aranged it yet ! Even the pastor has come to saying. Nadia when are you gonna play in church. Like I'm in charge or something! I would like to take your place, lol! But I dont get that nervous my hands just sweat! Which makes them slip on the keys! And mess up!!!!!!

19th comment

Save the coral!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Coral is beautifull. Like this if you love nature

To Nadia

I play piano too! I've been playing for seven years and I play for my church now. I love piano! I'm so glad that we have that in common! I think you should totally play for church sometime. It's a lot of fun and it's really good practice

To Nadia

What is your favorite style of music to play? I particularly love classical! I am learning a new piece that is a medley of Jesus loves me with the clair de lune. It is super pretty! I wish I could share it with you somehow. And I am also learning the étude allegro by Nakata. If you have a phone you can look it up and listen to it

To Janna

LOL! I like duets better too! How long have you been playing? I think my favorite part about playing for church is the offertory! I play every week for six months

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