Tuesday, February 25, 2020

SVF Eco-Tour Station 2 - Coral Nursery

In the Something Very Fishy story line, marine biologist Sandy Carson is tending a coral tree nursery to grow corals for transplanting on the reef. Sandy's song details all of the steps she has to go through to transplant a coral and why corals are important to the reef. 

The coral nursery station on our eco-tour brings to life how coral biologists are growing coral fragments in laboratory and field nurseries to facilitate reef restoration through transplantation.

After the children have a chance to learn about corals and ask questions about reef restoration, each child selects a plaster coral model from the nursery to transplant out on the coral reef. Our plaster models were hand made from our actual Siderastrea and Porites coral fragments that we lost during Hurricane Irma. We give the children the coral health card to compare their coral color to illustrate how scientists visually assess coral health.

As the children leave the coral nursery they enter a long hallway with many jellyfish. A long shelf-like coral reef sits in front of a coral reef mural.

The children then "transplant" their plaster coral model onto the reef.

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