During 2000 and 2001, REEF and the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary organized several special projects to increase REEF survey effort within the Sanctuary. Three of these projects are highlighted below. In 2002 and 2003, REEF and the CINMS coordinated Field Surveys to the Sanctuary. Since 2004, REEF has conducted annual Nearshore Assessment surveys using our Advanced Assessment Team and other surveyors to conduct surveys at 32 sites both inside and outside of the marine reserves throughout the Sanctuary.
In June of 2000, an expedition Team composed of REEF Advanced Assessment members from around the country converged on the southern California coast to participate in a project with the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary (CINMS). Dr Christy Semmens, REEF Scientific Coordinator, led a group of 8 REEF divers from as far away as Washington, Louisiana, Ohio and Florida in survey dives at 8 sites in the Channel Islands. As part of the expedition, CINMS staff and the REEF team attended fish identification seminars and presentations on how survey data are being used to document distributions and population changes. During the three diving days of the project, the team collected 47 surveys on Anacapa and Santa Cruz Islands. More than 40 species were documented during the project including 3 species new to the Channel Islands REEF fish survey records. Species of note included Sarcastic and Yellowfin Fringheads, Orangethroated Pikeblenny, Ling Cod and numerous Rockfish. Click here to view a Summary Data Report from the trip.
As part of a week-long tour of California, REEF staff were joined by CINMS volunteers and Long Beach Aquarium divers for fish identification seminars and a one-day survey trip to Anacapa and Santa Cruz Islands. The Truth Aquatic's Conception was the host for over 30 divers. We visited three sites and collected 76 REEF surveys. Fifty-six species were documented. The Aquarium divers will be conducting REEF surveys as part of their future diving in the Sanctuary. Click here to view a Summary Data Report from the trip.
As part of REEF's annual Great American Fish Count, REEF staff Julie Dutcher joined CINMS staff and 15 divers for a two-day survey trip to the Sanctuary. Over 90 surveys were collected and several of the sites visited were new for the REEF database. Summary Data Report posted here.
Volunteers from around the country have participated in Field Surveys to the Channel Islands. These multiple day projects are led by REEF staff and include training seminars and fish survey dives. Field Surveys are a great way to get involved with REEF and to take a dive vacation that counts. Click here to find out more.
2002 CINMS Field Survey Summary - data report | trip log
2003 CINMS Field Survey Summary - data report | trip log
Starting in 2004, REEF initiated an annual monitoring program using our Advanced Assessment Team and other qualified surveyors to collect data at sites inside and outside of the marine reserves in the CINMS. By engaging volunteers in the reserve monitoring process, members of the diving community are able to actively participate in the collection of meaningful data. Volunteers taking part in the REEF program are more knowledgeable and aware of the local marine resources and of the Sanctuary in general, which leads to a stronger sense of stewardship and support for effective management. Data collected during the project contribute to the larger REEF database, which can be used to better understand the status and trends at sites inside and outside reserves.
The CINMS has provided vessel support for this project aboard the R/V Shearwater. Surveys are conducted during a series of cruises throughout the year at set of targeted sites, representing a areas both inside and outside of the marine reserves throughout the Sanctuary.