Dive company moves to protect reef

Thursday July 13, 2017 Written by Published in Local

Local dive company Pacific Divers is taking extra steps to invest in the protection of Rarotonga’s fringing reef.

 

The company is investing in an array of permanent moorings in order to reduce the damage caused by anchoring.

Pacific Divers director, Stephen Lyon, a marine scientist and avid conservationist, has seen the reef recover from the devastation of the Crown of Thorns outbreak, known locally as Taramea, in 1999.

‘’The health of our reef, particularly on our Northern Coast, is the best it has been in almost 20 years.

The reef has been recovering since 2000.”

A recent bleaching event threatened the reef, however those corals affected have mostly recovered, says Lyon. Another key threat to the reef is the damage caused by anchoring, a daily activity for some dive operations.

Pacific Divers have replaced three moorings, and have established one new diving location. Lyon says they now have seven sites with moorings and plan to set up at least two more new locations.

The moorings are attached to the reef using chain, and consist of a line to the surface, and two floats, one subsurface, and one marker float on top.

By placing out permanent moorings at the common dive sites Lyon hopes to eliminate any possible damage to the reef caused by his company and ensure his operation is working in the most sustainable way possible.

            - Release

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