Coastal Habitat Rehabilitation in Gulf of Mannar, Tamil Nadu, India
by Suganthi Devadason Marine Research Institute (SDMRI) (Non-governmental organization (NGO))
SDMRI has implemented a Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India funded project titled Coastal habitats rehabilitation for Climate Change Adaptation in Gulf of Mannar, South-eastern India: Improving ecosystem services and fisher livelihood under the Climate Change Action Plan in respect of Tamil Nadu during 1 October 2015 to 31 March 2018
A total of 2 acres of degraded reef area and 2 acres of degraded seagrass area in Koswari Island in Tuticorin coast of Gulf of Mannar have been successfully restored with good growth and survival using the low-cost and low-tech transplantation technique with artificial substrates like concrete frames for coral rehabilitation and PVC frames and jute ropes for seagrass rehabilitation.
The live coral cover in the entire Koswari Island was 15.27% in 2005 and it increased to 27.32% in 2015 which was again reduced to 17.56% in 2016 due to bleaching and subsequent mortality caused by climate change in the coral reefs of Gulf of Mannar that happened in 2016 in alignment with the third global coral bleaching event. However, the successful coral rehabilitation has helped in the increase of live coral cover to 19.64% within a year i.e. in 2017.
The coral rehabilitation exercise has also helped in the increase of new coral recruits in the rehabilitation sites due to the artificial substrates like concrete frames and fish houses which act as good substrates for the attachment of coral recruit.
SDMRI Reef Research Team is continuing the regular monitoring and maintenance work of the coral and seagrass rehabilitation sites from April 2018 in order to document survival, growth and to record data relating to the associated biodiversity.
1. The follow up monitoring and maintenance of the coral and seagrass rehabilitation sites in order to document survival, growth and to record data relating to the associated biodiversity.
2. Ensuring the success in rehabilitation through the increase of live coral and seagarss areas and associated biodiversity
3. Documenting and reporting the impacts of rehabilitation to Governments (Government of India and Government of Tamil Nadu) in order to help in the decision making on conservation issues and to community through documentary film and brochures to make them aware the importance of conserving coastal habitats.
The coral and seagrass rehabilitation areas (Koswari Island in Gulf of Mannar) are within the Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park and the monitoring and maintenance activities are being carried out in close association with the Park Management.
Status of rehabilitated coral and seagrass areas - survival, growth and associated biodiversity
Impact of coral and seagrass rehabilitation on conservation and management
Staff / Technical expertise
Reef Research Team
Time-frame: April 2018 - March 2020
Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (Government),
Tamil Nadu State Forest Department (Government),
Tamil Nadu State Environment Department (Government),
Suganthi Devadason Marine Research Institute (NGO)
Coastal community along Gulf of Mannar
Edward JK Patterson, Director, email@example.com, +91 9443337172
Tuticorin City, India