All posts tagged: mission blue

World Oceans Day: Game Changers

In honour of celebrating World Ocean’s Day (8 June), and this year being designated as the International Year of the Reef, I would like to take this opportunity to recognise some amazing people who are making waves in Ocean Conservation.  These incredible souls are my personal heroes and legends in their own right.  They are ocean conservationists who are indeed game changers.  They are movers and shakers in the world of ocean conservation and are dedicated to creating a positive impact for the betterment of our oceans.  They all share the common goal of protecting and preserving our oceans, marine life and precious coral reef ecosystems. They are all an inspiration.  I am so proud to call these luminaries my friends, it is such a privilege to know them and be inspired by them.  I admire them for all that they do to raise awareness about environmental issues and their ocean conservation efforts.   Ellen Cuylaerts, Underwater and Wildlife Photographer, and Conservationist It is a true honour to know Ellen Cuylaerts.  She has an incredible …

coral reef cayman islands

Cayman Islands: Coral Nursery Conservation Program

  The caribbean has already lost 80% of its coral reefs. Grand Cayman Eco Divers in collaboration with the Cayman Islands Department of Environment and various local dive establishments have teamed up for over a year aspiring to maintain coral nurseries to aid in conservation, sustainability and restoration of Cayman’s coral reefs. The program has developed effective strategies for protecting and restoring damaged areas of coral reef.  In short, their innovative approach is to grow Staghorn coral in nurseries.  Coral fragments are grown on structures referred to as coral trees.  These “trees” are made from PVC and fiberglass rods.  The fragments of coral grow into colonies.  After significant growth they are then later removed from the tree and out planted onto damaged coral reef areas to aid in their recovery.  For longevity it is proven to provide a sustainable way to maintain healthy reefs.  The successful transplantation and growth of the coral fragments help create diversity in the ecosystem as well as more resilient  reefs. Cayman Eco Divers are seeking to expand the current Coral …

The Cayman Islands: A Haven for Sharks & Rays

Photo Credit: Ellen Cuylaerts The Cayman Islands has built its name and reputation primarily on being a renowned diving destination.  Pioneers in our local diving community over the last few decades contributed to building our diving industry into the premier operation that it is today.  They recognized the exquisite beauty our underwater landscape had to offer and have since then made it accessible for locals and tourists to recreationally experience and explore the beauty that lies below the surface for themselves.  With a desire to showcase our natural resources comes with a commitment to preserve them.  Our duty towards conservation for both land and the ocean is beneficial not just from an environmental perspective but also an economic one.  Our tourism industry is strongly tied to our island’s natural resources.  Ergo, an obvious reason to ensure that our natural resources are protected.  Last year on Earth Day (2015), the Cayman Islands officially became a Sharks and Rays Sanctuary.  The sanctuary expands across all three islands.  This is a positive step towards ecotourism as many tourists …

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Hope On The Horizon: Cayman Islands (Mission Blue Hope Spot)

Photo Credit: Ellen Cuylaerts I am so excited to announce that today I was published in Mission Blue’s Ocean Stories.  It was such an honor! I am so humbled by this moment.  It was an absolute pleasure to work with Mission Blue and Ellen Cuylaerts.  Thank You Ellen for allowing me to use your spectacular pictures for the article. Recently, the Cayman Islands, George Town Harbor was designated as a new Hope Spot by Mission Blue. To read more about my article please visit Mission Blue’s website, or click here. Content Update: 7th January 2017.  Below is my article in full.  Originally published in Mission Blue’s Ocean Stories.  Photo Credit: Ellen Cuylaerts Recently, the George Town Harbor in the Cayman Islands was named a Mission Blue Hope Spot- one of fourteen newly designated Hope Spots.  This is incredible news for environmentalists both locally and internationally.  A designated Hope Spot is an area considered to be “critical to the health of the ocean”.  These special areas are recognized by Mission Blue and respectively conservationists around the globe as …