WIO post-bleaching assessment 2017

In order to get a full picture of the impact of the 2016 bleaching event on the Western Indian Ocean, the Biodiversity Project is supporting the reef network to conduct a post bleaching assessment in six countries in the region (Comoros, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Tanzania). Under the Coral Reef Task Force – WIO countries which do not fall within the scope of the Biodiversity Project (France, South Africa, Mozambique, Somalia), will also be included in this data sharing joint output. Therefore partners from these countries are encouraged to participate within their own capacity through data collection and sharing. 

The project will run from June to December 2017, with fieldwork conducted in Sept/October 2017 and finalization of reports in January/February 2018. CORDIO will lead the regional coordination of the project with the assistance of national coordinators from each country.

Update – National Coordinators:

Comoros – Mmadi Ahamada (AIDE Comoros – ahamadam09@yahoo.fr), Kenya – Mwaura Jelvas (KMFRI – jelvasmwaura@yahoo.com), Madagascar – Ihando Andrianjafy (General Env Dept, ihando.niaina@gmail.com), Tanzania – Saleh Yahya (IMS, saleh_y@yahoo.com), Seychelles – TBD, Mauritius – TBD. Please feel free to get in touch with the relevant National Coordinator if you require any information about the project plans in the country or want to participate.

Project objectives

• to consolidate post-bleaching assessment methods and guidance for the WIO regional reef network;
• to capture and disseminate data on the impact of the 2016 coral reef bleaching event and subsequent recovery in the Western Indian Ocean;
• to facilitate a meeting of regional stakeholders to share and consolidate data.

Download the technical note for more project details including background, timeline, main activities, site selection and survey methodology.

Site and methodology selection

A key aim of this project is to maintain data collection at long-term monitoring sites, thereby contributing to national long-term data series and increasing consistency with site selection. Therefore long-term monitoring sites are prioritized over short-term and specific project based sites, as can be seen in the flow-chart on the right. Of the highest priority, are those long-term monitoring sites where quantitative bleaching surveys were conducted pre- and during the peak of bleaching in 2016.

In order to make this initiative as successful and comprehensive as possible, we require data from as many as sites as possible in each country. Therefore any organisation involved in long-term coral reef monitoring are encouraged to conduct their own surveys and contribute their data.

Note: If you have conducted surveys since August 2016, then there is no need to re-survey these sites again in Sept/Oct 2017. The data already collected will be sufficient for this initiative. Post-bleaching surveys in Sept/Oct 2017 should only be done at sites which have not been surveyed since August 2016. 


Post-bleaching monitoring sites 2017

The map is updated using observations made via the Post-bleaching assessment – Monitoring site questionnaire. If you have long-term monitoring sites please complete and send the questionnaire to mgudka@cordioea.net. 

Post-bleaching assessment webinar – 21st July 2017

Dr. David Obura and Mishal Gudka of CORDIO East Africa (supported through the Biodiversity Project of the Indian Ocean Commission) present a webinar on how to conduct a post-bleaching assessment in the Western Indian Ocean (WIO). 


Other resources

Coral Reef Monitoring Manual: http://commissionoceanindien.org/file… 

2017 WIO post-bleaching assessment presentation