Reattaching coral to the substrate
Kuleana Coral Reefs is taking a relatively simple approach to coral restoration in Hawai'i. Our basic strategy is to collect large dislodged corals that have a low chance of survival and reattach them to the solid substrate in the restoration areas.
Collecting dislodged coral
How it works
By locally recovering disturbed corals and permanently reattaching them to the seafloor, we offset the casualties due to a variety of stressors. Typically, dislodged corals (from storms, waves, ship groundings, anchor damage, and destructive fishing methods) will tumble down the reef slope into deeper water and eventually die in the poorer conditions (low light, low water flow, sediment, unstable substrate).
Our goals are to deliver methods that are efficient, affordable, scalable, and modular for most Hawaiian reef restoration efforts. Our work builds upon the experience of and is guided by our partners from NOAA and DAR. This initial pilot project will immediately re-establish existing coral colonies without the risks or costs of a land based nursery, and in year one KCR will strive to reattach 2000 coral colonies, restoring 5,000 square feet of reef habitat.
A second chance.
Our team collects displaced corals from the bottom of reef slopes near the restoration area and strategically reattaches them to the seafloor. Normally long-term survival of displaced corals is extremely low, but if corals can be recovered early enough and returned to the reef permanently, they typically have a greater chance of survival. Some of the corals saved could be over 25 years old.