BLEACHWATCH Program Sponsors, Partners & Founders:

​​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 FL coral reefs?

The FL DEP SEAFAN BleachWatch Program was designed to help answer some of these questions by providing valuable information about the condition of SE FL's coral reefs, with the help of citizen scientists who can 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 is combined with observer reports to produce a comprehensive overview of regional current conditions.

​Introductory SEAFAN BleachWatch trainings (via the DEP) are typically about 2-hrs and free to registrants:.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 disease that trained divers may observe and report back to on their own dives, with the help of dedicated and supplied materials. Classes held by volunteer instructors may be by invitation or otherwise not public.

Additional and recent info about the major SE FL Coral Disease Outbreak that started circa 2014.

Want to learn about properly reporting signs or coral bleaching and/or disease to Please check out a recent BleachWatch Instructional Video at FOFR's YouTube Channel

Please see our HOME PAGE for upcoming BleachWatch Trainings

To register for future BleachWatch classes, please CLICK HERE

Please also check the FL DEP Coral Program SEAFAN BleachWatch Page for more information and resources. The FL DEP CRCP can be contacted directly via email:


2022 BleachWatch Instructional Video at YouTube    

2023 BleachWatch Instructional Video (reg required)

2019 BleachWatch Program     2018 Program     2016 Program

FDEP CRCP's BleachWatch Page

Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease Response (SE Florida Action Network, also to report any unusual observations)

Interested in sponsoring and/or partnering with the BleachWatch Trainings?
Contact FOFR about the many opportunities!