Monday, November 24, 2008

Saving The Coral Reefs - Airdate - 11/25/08 - 4 p.m. (ET)

Update - 11/25/08: This show has aired. You can download the MP3 from our archive. Let us know what you think!

Joe Hardtke

So my wife and I were digging the dolphins at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium when we ran into something that I hope to share with all of you.

The exhibit was called Wild Reef and it's been around for a few years now. It detailed the work scientists have been doing with fisherman on Apo Island in the Philippines. It seems their reefs were in very bad shape, but by incorporating research with traditional fishing practices, Apo was able to save their reef.

It's been a long process taking a couple of decades, but now researchers are spreading this success to other islands. The key, it seemed, in the exhibit was researchers working with the residents on Apo, not for them, in finding the right practices that saved the reef and the fishermen.

I'm in contact with the Shedd about possibly doing a program. Have you seen the exhibit? Do you know of any other reef researchers?

Update: I've learned through my research that the Shedd's efforts are part of a larger initiative. It's called Project Seahorse and it's attracted the talent of marine biologists worldwide. We're expanding the scope of our program to discuss the project with Shedd Aquarium Director of Fishes George Parsons. I hope to book a couple more international guests to the show. Are you aware of the Project or any of the aquariums involved?

Update: I'm happy to report we've booked two guests from Project Seahorse to the show. Amanda Vincent is the director and co-founder of the organization and Jonathan Anticamara is a PhD candidate who conducted research on fish in the central Philippines. It should be a great show. I hope you can join us. Have you seen the Shedd's exhibit? Have you snorkeled in marine conservation areas? We'd love to hear from you.


F. Milton Olsen III said...

The reefs are dying because media has continued to give forum to liars and corporate polluters who have lulled our media gatekeepers to sleep until it is too late. We can mourn the loss of our reefs, our oceans and our world, but until our last breath escapes us mainstream media will continue to give time to people who clearly are lying to us about the environment.

In the name of some sort of twisted "balance", liars and killers get equal time and are treated as if they are telling the truth, when we know they are NOT.

This will be the death of us all.

Jonathan A. Anticamara said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jonathan A. Anticamara said...

There are multiple causes of reef declines/destruction such as unregulated/destructive fishing, storms, pollution, sedimentation, unregulated tourism, diseases, and global warming. The main question that this radio program posed is "Can we save the reefs from these natural and human-induced disturbances?". In one hour period, this radio show attempted to describe how local communities, non-government organizations, government organizations, zoos, aquariums, universities and media are trying to find solutions to some of the reefs problems. It was highlighted in the show that there are examples of success stories about how various peoples and organizations helped each other to recover previously degraded reefs such as Apo Island and many other reef Islands in the central Philippines, and the whole Philippines. But in order to save the world reefs we need knowledge (scientific, socio-economic, political, anthropological etc.) and strategies (local to global and short-term to long-term). We also need lots of support from local communities living near reefs, government and non-government agencies, academia and research institutions, media and the general public. The stories of Apo Island and how Project Seahorse is expanding the experience of Apo Island to larger areas in the Philippines are good examples of collaborative and positive attitude towards finding solutions to save the world reefs. It is not an easy task, and I agree with F. Milton Olsen that the media has some responsibilities to bring useful knowledge to the global public and various stakeholders on the developments of activities targeted towards saving the reefs. I applaud Jean and HereOnEarth staff for bringing into the public attention some positive examples of how we can save the reefs. Considering the great threats that reefs are facing, we cannot behave in a 'doom and gloom fashion' and surrender to negativity or frustrations of this considerably difficult challenge. The reefs hold the greatest diversity per unit area known on this planet, and we need to pool our resources, knowledge, creativity and passion to help this wonderful ecosystem survive for the many generations to come, for as much as we can. To do that we need research, application of relevant research findings, education, and restoration/recovery actions and people who care about the reefs.

bathmate said...

good posting.i like it. thank u. :)-