Sharing our knowledge at the Reef Futures Symposium
Photo: A thriving elkhon coral colony, 7 years after outplanting onto the reef, Curaçao. (Paul Selvaggio)
“Reef Futures 2018 brings together experts from around the world to share the latest science and techniques for coral reef restoration while kicking off a global effort to dramatically scale-up the impact and reach of restoration as a major tool for coral reef conservation and management.”
Such is the stated description of the upcoming “Reef Futures 2018 symposium” (Dec. 10-14) in Florida, Miami, organized by the Coral Restoration Consortium. “SECORE is playing a major role in the execution of the symposium as well as the realization of these goals”, says SECORE Research Director Margaret Miller. She has been involved in the scientific planning committee leading up to the meeting that will bring together more than 450 marine scientists and restoration practitioners from over 17 countries.
Furthermore, six SECORE staff plus Chairman of the Board, Mike Brittsan, will be attending, making presentations, and moderating across a range of topical sessions. “We will present our latest research results and discuss our experiences in sessions related to larval propagation, restoration genetics, and restoration in ecological and management contexts”, Margaret Miller says. SECORE Science Advisor, Dr. Iliana Baums, and Australian collaborators, Drs. David Mead and Line Bay, are all giving invited keynote presentations at the meeting as well.
Photo: Participants of a reef restoration workshop on Curaçao transplant SECORE Seeding Units with baby corals growing on them onto the reef. (Paul Selvaggio)
In addition to the scientific program, SECORE scientists are also looking forward to having many opportunities for informal meetings with current and future collaborators and partners. “Given the critical mass of attendance by coral restoration ‘movers and shakers’ there is also a range of scheduled ‘side meetings’ and seminars that will enable us to enjoy in-person exchange with groups we generally only interact with virtually”, Margaret Miller states. These include discussions regarding how to integrate databases on important restoration topics such as spawning observation times or genetic identity of restored populations, learning about new genetic or mapping tools, and networking with other groups involved in coral restoration in the Pacific basin. In other words: “We anticipate a very busy and productive week”, Margaret Miller says.