Every week Oceans Unlimited interns will be conducting REEF fish surveys!
How does someone conduct a REEF survey?
- Using the Roving Diver Technique (RDT)
- Divers swim freely throughout a dive site and record every observed fish species that can be positively identified
- Species and approximate abundance of the species is recorded on a slate
- Record every species seen
- Brush up on your knowledge of fish species in your area (REEF.org)
- If you do not know the species write a description of the fish’s physical appearance to look it up after
- Use an underwater slate to record species
- An example of a fish slate that makes recording easy:
- Record the abundance of each fish species by numerical values of:
- Single (S)
- Few (F) 2-10 sightings
- Many (M) 11-100 sightings
- Abundant (A) over 100 sightings
- Once you have all the data submit it online!
So who can complete these REEF surveys?
- All new REEF members
- There are two levels of REEF surveyors
- Novice and Expert
- There are tests that can be taken online and in person to qualify for an expert level surveyor (go to reef.org)
- REEF project areas are shown below:
What is the significance of recording this data
- Many scientist have used the REEF studies to conduct scientific experiments and publish their findings
- REEF data has been used for scientific reports including:
- Fisheries research
- Ecological applications
- Evolutionary applications
- Coral reef studies
- Conservation studies
- Check out these publications which have all included REEF data
You can also come dive with Oceans Unlimited Costa Rica and conduct a fish survey weekly!
- Doing reef surveys will change your diving experience completely
- Find fish that you never seemed to notice!
- Learn the impact that the different fish have on the coral reef system!
- Get excited about spotting certain species that sustain the reefs!
- Become a scientist!
- Enjoy diving while making a difference!
Be sure to check out our Go Pro Website every week to check out our findings!