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Cozumel reef restoration project continues to be success

Cozumel, Q.R. — The Oceanus Association reported that 2020 registered an important advance in the implementation of the second phase of the Reef Restoration Program in the Chankanaab Natural Park by initiating the placement of more fragments from the site’s nurseries.

The fragments are being planted to repopulate and expand the Acropora Palmata coral species.

The coral ecosystem restoration program, implemented in coordination with a local foundation, began in 2017, in order to plant more than 260,000 corals over six years in various parts of the state. To date, in Cozumel, they have repopulated Chankanaab with 1,500 coral fragments.

The biologist and person in charge of the project, Rafael Chacón Díaz, explained that derived from the monitoring, maintenance and cleaning of the coral nurseries, there is a growth of the planted corals and ramifications of more than seven centimeters.

He reported that despite the 2020 storms and hurricanes, there were only minor effects and the second stage of this project was still able to move forward. The second stage, he said, consists of separating the branches of the corals to plant them throughout of 521 linear meters of the coast of Chankanaab, with which they intend to continue with the restoration of the coral ecosystem in Cozumel.

The biologist emphasized that the Reef Restoration Program is of great environmental impact and has been successfully restoring the reef ecosystem, as well as providing social ecological awareness on its care and restoration.