Florida's Coral Reefs Need Observant Friends Like YOU!
While localized, colony-specific coral bleaching and various coral diseases has been recorded in SE Florida for over 100 years, there are strong indications that coral bleaching and disease has increased in frequency and severity along the Florida Reef Tract since the 1980's, correlating with significant Coral Bleaching events in the Caribbean and coral reefs worldwide as oceans and seas around the globe increase in temperature in relation to modern Climate Change. Increasing public, media and scientific concern for the reef highlighted the need for a program to monitor bleaching before, during and after each incident to help improve scientific understanding. There are many questions about coral bleaching and disease out-breaks that must be answered in order to fully assess the environmental impact of these events. Where and when are the bleaching and diseases taking place? What species are more vulnerable? What is the duration and severity of the events? And finally, what is the recovery and resilience potential of the SE Florida coral reef ecosystem?
The SEAFAN BleachWatch Program was designed to help answer some of these questions by providing valuable information about the condition of SE Florida's coral reefs with the help of citizen scientists who help make critical observations and collect significant data on their recreational or work-related dives. The BleachWatch Program combines climate and sea surface temperature data with field observations on the condition of coral reefs from a trained observer network in order to detect the potential onset of mass bleaching and coral disease events. The environmental monitoring data will be combined with observer network reports to produce a comprehensive overview of current conditions in the region.
Special Summer 2019
Workshop & Dive
Interested in taking your BleachWatch training and skills to the next level?
Become a Certified BleachWatch Instructor this summer!
With the increase in bleaching episodes and the unprecedented coral disease outbreak, there is a greater need for citizen scientists to report their observations. This free instructor course includes a full-day in the classroom followed by a half-day in the field/water. Participants will acquire the skills and tools needed to train others to become part of the BleachWatch Observer Network. Upon completion of the course, each instructor is expected to teach at least one BleachWatch class per summer, with help of provided materials and guidance.
CHECK BACK SOON FOR A POTENTIAL 2019 TRAINING WORKSHOP
IMPORTANT NOTE: Space is very limited, advanced registration required. Knowledge of coral identification and coral condition is desired. Must be over 18 years of age and SCUBA a certified SCUBA diver with significant diving experience. These unique BleachWatch instructor-training workshops also include a complimentary field training dive held soon after the class that should be taken to complete the training and be qualified to become a Certified BleachWatch Instructor. Complimentary refreshments and lunch will be provided at the all-day workshops.
2019 BLEACHWATCH Program Sponsors, Partners & Founders:
Summer 2019 - INTRODUCTORY BLEACHWATCH TRAINING CLASSES
Note: Space limited, schedule subject to change - please register ASAP via email: email@example.com
June 18, 2019 (6-8p)
Marine Environmental Education Center
4414 N Surf Rd, Hollywood, FL 33019
June 20, 2019 (6-8p)
Gumbo Limbo Nature Center
1801 N Ocean Blvd, Boca Raton, FL 33432
June 25, 2019 (6-8p)
Scuba Central Dive Shop
806 SW Federal Hwy, Stuart, FL 34994
July 16, 2019 (6-8p)
Jupiter Dive Center:
1001 FL A1A Alt, Jupiter, FL 33477
August 20, 2019 (6-8p)
Force-E Scuba Center, Pompano
1312 N Federal Hwy,
Pompano Beach, FL 33062
August 27, 2019 (6-8p)
Grove Scuba Miami
2809 SW 27th Ave, Miami, FL 33133
***To register for any of the free classes above, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org***
Introductory evening SEAFAN BleachWatch training classes run approximately 2-hours and are open and free to the public with advance registration, walk-ins are welcomed if space permits. Those who have taken the class before are welcomed to return for a refresher and recent updates about the growing threats of coral bleaching and/or disease outbreaks in SE Florida. The purpose of the Bleachwatch classroom experience is to provide an overview about the BleachWatch Program and visual examples of various levels of coral bleaching and diseases divers may observe and possibly report back to SEAFAN on their own rec dives with dedicated provided materials.
CLASSROOM TRAINING AND IN-WATER FIELD COURSES