Diving & Marine Conservation Volunteering in Thailand - Monthly Updates
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Conservation in Thailand - Monthly Update October- November 2013
During October the conservation project moved to its new home, Utopia, still in Ao Nammao but now surrounded by beautiful mangrove forest. Volunteers have been spotting all kinds of species in the area, including otters, macaques and many different bird species! The volunteers club house and restaurant area are surrounded by a small lake with a healthy fish population. Some of our volunteers have been jumping in for a quick dip when it gets hot in the midday.
Our relocation comes at the same time we have formed a partnership with Mangrove Action Project (MAP). This partnership means that our terrestrial conservation work will now concentrate on mangroves which are essential to coastal area eco-systems.
As November kicked in our marine biologist, Diego was busy planning and implementing new projects. We have added a grouper survey to our work in monitoring the health of the coral reefs. The grouper survey will be a Projects Abroad based survey but we will also be sharing our data with Phuket Marine Biological Centre. We have also been discussing future plans with Krabi Provincial Administrative Organization (KPAO) regarding surveying their artificial reefs.
The KPAO have asked the Thailand conservation team to help survey three different artificial reef sites. These surveys will help the KPAO see the rate of the artificial reefs development. Our survey work of these reefs will ultimately result in Projects Abroad producing a set of recommendations for the future use of artificial reefs in the area. Projects Abroad is honored to be given this responsibility which proves the good reputation we have built up with the local authorities over many years.
In November everyone at the project took part in the “The 3rd Cleaning fish’s home for our King”. This event is in honor of the King of Thailand in which we remove as much trash form the sea as possible. As Projects Abroad Thailand is already a major contributor to Dive Against Debris in Thailand we seen it as our responsibility to make sure we contributed to this day and helped out as best we could.
The event consisted of a 2 day clean up around Koh Phi Phi. The first day was around Phi Phi Lay and on the second day the dive site was around the tsunami memorial wall of Phi Phi Don. The overall debris salvaged by our volunteers and all the other volunteers from different organizations added up to around 3 tons of rubbish.
The highlight of the event was when we managed to salvage an anchor weighing over 80 Kg!
Diving Based Projects:
Green Fins Survey
October was a transition month for our scientific surveys because we focus our efforts on the Green Fins survey instead of Reef Check survey.
A total of 18 Reef Watch surveys were conducted by our volunteers during the month of October and November with a total amount of 52 roving surveys and 20934.4 m2 analyzed.
Different features of the environment are analyzed getting an average during this time: