[Coral-List] Reef Check training and survey expedition in Thailand Feb/March 2004

Georg Heiss georg.heiss at reefcheck.de
Fri Dec 26 10:49:00 EST 2003

Dear coral-list,

we'd like to draw your attention to the upcoming Reef Check Training 
Course and Survey Expedition in the Andaman Sea, West Coast of 

The announcement is available as rtf-document (opens in most text-editors) at:


the plain text-version is included in the body of this message.

Happy New Year!


Dr. Georg Heiss
Reef Check Europe Coordinator
fax: +49-30-484981805
e-mail: <georg at reefcheck.de>
http://www.reefcheck.de/en | http://www.reefcheck.org | 

Reef Check Training Course and Survey Expedition,
Andaman Sea, West Coast of Thailand

Feb 29 to March 12, 2004
Phuket, Thailand

Organised by Reef Check Europe in collaboration with Phuket Marine 
Biology Center (PMBC) and Europe Conservation Switzerland

First Announcement
Call for Applications

The Reef Check program was founded in 1997 to answer the question: 
"What is the health of the world's reefs?"  To do this on a global 
scale, a simple, rapid monitoring program was designed that relies on 
volunteers, trained and led by marine scientists. The goal was to 
train volunteers to collect scientifically valid data on reef health, 
but the result was more far reaching. By taking part in Reef Check 
surveys, divers, businessmen and fishermen alike develop a strong 
desire to take better care of reefs.

The Reef Check concept is to create an international network of 
regional, national and local volunteer coordinators who are 
responsible for Reef Check activities in their area. The coordinators 
raise funds, organize media events and match teams of divers with 
marine scientists who provide training and lead the teams during the 
actual survey. Today, Reef Check surveys have been carried out at 
over 1000 reefs in 60 countries and territories. By using the same 
method all over the world, Reef Check has been able to track global 
trends such as the global effects of over fishing on reefs and the 
1998 bleaching and mortality event that devastated reefs throughout 
tropical oceans.

The Reef Check training and survey process targets local community 
members and instills in them a strong sense of stewardship while 
gaining a basic understanding of coral reef ecology and the 
relationship of human activities to reef health. Reef Check training 
workshops, supported by UNEP have been successfully carried out in 
the Caribbean, Eastern Africa, and South East Asia.
Further information and details on the methods, as well as the 
complete instruction manual are available from 

The Reef Check programme in collaboration with Phuket Marine Biology 
Center (PMBC) and Europe Conservation Switzerland are organising a 
"Reef Check Training Course for voluntary coral reef monitoring and 
Survey" in the Andaman Sea to be held at PMBC Phuket, in Ao Khoei, Ko 
Tachai, and Ko Surin Archipelago.

The goal of Part 1 (training course) is to bring together potential 
Reef Check team leaders and team scientists from South East Asia and 
paying volunteers from any country in order to learn about the coral 
reef biology and ecology of the Andaman Sea and how to carry out Reef 
Check surveys.
The goal of Part 2 (Reef Check surveys) is to jointly carry out Reef 
Check surveys in the Andaman Sea after the training course to assess 
the current status of coral reefs in this area. Results will be used 
for regional coral reef management, be presented at the International 
Coral Reef Symposium in Okinawa (July 2004) and will be included in 
the next "Global Status Report on Coral Reefs".

Both parts are open to: a) staff of organizations such as government 
parks, universities, tourism industry and others from the private 
sector and b)  volunteers with an interest in coral reef ecology and 
conservation. Project partners will select participants from 
different backgrounds, including people of low education level as 
well as park rangers and university scientists through nomination by 
institutions/organizations in the region. Participants will be 
trained to carry out the surveys and, in a second step, to train 
members of their respective communities. The participants would be 
trained, certified as RC team leaders, and become responsible for 
activities in their respective areas.
The training will be from March 1st to 6th, followed by Reef Check 
surveys of reefs during a cruise in the islands of the Thailand 
Andaman Sea (incl.: Ko Tachai, Ko Surin Archipelago, March 8-12).

A maximum of 20 persons will be accepted.

Language of the course: English

Due to your experience and track-record within coral reef work in the 
region we would hereby like to give you the opportunity to nominate 
at least one person from your institution to participate in the 
training. It is important to remember that the nominated person 
should have the capacity to conduct Reef Check monitoring surveys and 
possibly train members of their respective communities/institutions 
so as to ensure a continuation of the programme. Nominees should 
therefore be in a good position to carry out monitoring surveys and 
further training.
Swimming and snorkelling (and if possible, diving) skills are necessary.
Selection of a nominee should also take into account the work 
experience of the nominee as well as any experience in training 

Selection will primarily be based on the information provided by you 
in the nomination form (below). The selection process will also try 
as to assure a broad span of backgrounds of the trainees.

Total: 1200 Euro for 12 days (if only Part 1: 600 Euro for 6 days)
(Payment is expected in Euros, but for estimation, approximately 1 
Euro = US $1.25)

Included in the contributions:
- stay in hotel/ bungalows/ boat/tents.
- food, drinks (alcoholic beverages extra)
- lectures
- Reef Check training, certificate
- Diving: compressor rental, tank rental, filling

Not included in these 1200 Euro:
- Personal diving equipment.
- Travel to Phuket. Also we cannot give you any information on 
airfares to Thailand, as these vary greatly in different countries. 
Please consult your travel agency.

Depending on the number of participants, we can offer free 
participation for a few candidates from the region, which otherwise 
will not be able to attend this course. Please indicate on the 
application form whether you would like to apply for assistance.
However, we cannot provide any assistance for travel expenses to Phuket.

Application deadline	31 January 2004
Sending of formal invitation to nominees	7 February 2004
Accepting invitation deadline, downpayment due	12 February 2004
Arrival at Phuket	29 February 2003
Training course Part 1: Reef Check course	1-6 March 2003
Training course Part 2: Reef Check surveys	8-12 March 2003

PRELIMINARY PROGRAMME (subject to change)
Phuket, Thailand. Feb 29 to March 12, 2004

With the collaboration of PMBC - organised by MarinasiaLtd/Ecoswiss

Sunday 29 Feb 2003
afternoon : arrival of participants in Phuket; check-in at Hotel

1900 welcome drinks and dinner

Monday 1st March 2004
0900 breakfast at Hotel, transfer to PMBC

1100 Welcome by The Director, PMBC

1130 Andaman Sea marine life by Dr Supote, Deputy Director PMBC

1230 Questions and answers

1300 lunch

1430 Fish of the Andaman sea by Khun Ukkrit

1530 Corals in the Andaman Sea by Khun Niphon PMBC

1630 Introduction to Reef Check and Reef Check Survey Methods
by Dr Georg Heiss, Reef Check Europe

1800 transfer to hotel, free evening

Tuesday 2 March
0900 transfer to Ao Khoei (200 km 3hrs + stop)

1230 arrival in Ao Khoei, lunch (or lunch on the way, some nice places!)

1400 The Andaman Coast, Ao Khoei, Laem Son, Ko Tachai and Surin 
Islands Research Area, by Khun Niphon and/or Luca Schueli

1500 check equipment, first RC lessons on beach

time for a swim and allocation of berths

0730 pm dinner at Ao Khoei

Participants will sleep in berths on moored catamarans berths for up 
to 20 people, - or tents - with communal services on site or onboard. 
Large marquee for lessons and dining. If there are many participants 
they may be divided into groups.

Wednesday, 3 March
0730 am breakfast

0830 Reef Check theory and practice on the beach

1130 Lunch

1300 transfer to Ko Khai by boat, 3 NM; first snorkelling and 
training on Reef Check transects

1930 dinner and sleep at Ao Khoei

Thursday, 4 March
0630 breakfast

0730 Transfer again to Ko Khai (or Ko Ra, 6NM)

1200 packed lunch on beach

1300 RC dives and transects

1800 return to Ao Khoei

1930 dinner

Friday, 5 March
0730 transfer on SeaNOMAD catamaran to Laem Son National Park, Ko 
Kham Island.15 NM

1000 Reef Check dives and transects

overnight at Ko Kham, Sleep on board and/or on beach and/or at bungalows

Saturday, 6 March
more transects around Ko Kham

1730 return to Ao Khoei

1930 dinner

Sunday, 7 March
free day; relax; or dive, tours can be organised to Khao Sok National 
Park (Rainforest) or even dives. Preparation of yacht(s) for cruise

Monday 8 March - Thursday 11 March :
730 Ao Khoei: Embark on Namaste and/or SeaNomad Catamarans for Reef 
Check transects and surveys on islands incl.: Ko Tachai, Ko Surin 

Friday 12 March
1700 return to Ao Khoei

End of Reef Check Training course

Bus transfer to Phuket or Ranong (if booked on Burma Cruise)



Please complete and return to reefcheck2004 at reefcheck.de before 31 
January 2004 (only by E-mail).

Nominating institution/organization:
Contact person (e-mail):

Title (Prof., Dr., Mr., Ms):
First Name:
Postal Address:

Diving experience (certificate, number of dives):

Why have you nominated the participant in question (e.g. experience, 
training skills etc.)?

What are the possibilities for this participant to further train others?

Is funding already secured?

Do you apply for free participation?
If yes, please explain on a separate page.

___To your best knowledge the participant/s is/are available for the 
workshop and will be able to obtain the necessary passport, visa and 
travel funds in time for the March workshop.


For further information contact:

Dr. Georg Heiss
Reef Check Europe
Tel: +20-2-7364325
Email: reefcheck2004 at reefcheck.de

Niphon Phongsuwan
Phuket Marine Biological Center
Tel +66-76-391128,391039
Fax +66-76-391127
Email: niphonp at hotmail.com

Luca Schueli
Europe Conservation Switzerland
Kidphadung Rd. Kao Nives,Muang
RANONG 85000
Tel.: +66-77-825554
Email: marinasia2003 at hotmail.com

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