[Coral-List] Summer Coral Reef Ecology Course

Michael Sweet M.Sweet at derby.ac.uk
Wed Aug 13 07:26:44 EDT 2014

Dear all

It's that time of year to advertise the now very popular summer coral reef ecology course run at the KorallionLab in the Maldives. This will now be the third year running and the participants appear to really love the course and hopefully learn a large amount about the Indian Ocean reef systems.

We are pleased to announce dates for the 2015, 10 day field course based at the marine research station in the Maldives - Korallion Laboratory (www.korallionlab.com<http://www.korallionlab.com> <http://www.korallionlab.com> ).

Based on Vavvaru Island, Lhaviyani Atoll, in the Indian Ocean, Korallionlab offers many different reef habitats for potential research projects: from tracts of reef with ~90% coral cover, patch reefs within the sandy lagoon and large coral bommies, which are often frequented by manta rays and whale sharks. There is a purpose built wet lab on sight for tank based experiments which has sea water flow through and a dry lab adjacent, kitted out with state of the art research equipment. The main reef can be easily reached by snorkelling and diving is therefore not essential for your work during the course and not offered as part of this course. Next year we will be running two courses the first of which runs between August 13th -22nd 2015 and the second August 22nd -31st 2015. This course is designed to provide students of any level with a sound foundation in ecological concepts, survey techniques and experimental design in field research applied to coral reef ecosystems. The Maldives, an atoll country has been described as one of the most interesting and diverse reef formations in all of the Indian Ocean. During the course we will provide a brief introduction on coral ecology, focusing on corals, sponges, echinoderms, reef fish and other organisms. We will cover lecturers on coral anatomy, physiology and ecological requirements. We will also assess the roles of these organisms on the reef and cover ways the reefs are being impacted by both anthropogenic and natural factors. Reef health sampling techniques will be discussed and practiced in the field and we will go over numerous experimental designs and sampling schemes aimed at describing the reef community and reef health status as a whole. During the latter end of the week, each student will be expected to prepare a brief, independent study. They will be guided through this process by the lead researcher, Dr Michael Sweet but the emphasis will be on independent thought and action. At the end of the 10 days each student or group will be expected to present their findings in a mini-symposium and if grades are required by the student, this presentation will account for part of that grading. Please email Dr Michael Sweet at m.sweet at derby.ac.uk<mailto:m.sweet at derby.ac.uk> for further information on the course and availability.

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