Spawning Corals with Florida Aquarium: Part 1

by | Nov 19, 2023 | Corals | 0 comments

A few months ago, I was invited to come up to Apollo Beach, Florida, to partake in the year’s last spawning event at Florida Aquarium’s Center for Conservation facility.

This took months of planning, but with Keri O’Neil’s team being so good at what they do, we were able to predict a day for me. Which isn’t really easy due to having to drive 4 hours each way, but I was excited to participate and to document the work of this amazing team that ensures the long term survival of multiple species of corals that are functionally extinct in the wild. I was also very nervous at the thought that it would not go our way and that we had missed the narrow window of the spawning season. With nature, nothing is 100% and you have to expect the unexpected at all times.

Shane Lafreniere of 247 Aquariums and I drove up to meet up with Keri and her team; we got to work and work we did! Both Shane and I, later joined by Chris Meckley of ACI Aquaculture, worked until the wee hours of the night and at the end, we had a moment to reflect what had happened and realized that this may be where our industry’s future lies, with all the bans and red tape happening. Not now, maybe not for a while, but something that’s definitely possible.

After sitting down to edit the hours of footage I had made, I made the decision to split the trip into 2 videos. Part 1 is narrated by Keri, she will tell us everything that happened on this trip. As an scientist, she will fill us in on every detail and step, such as identification of the corals, processes of fertilization, and the process of cell divisions that ultimately end up as baby corals. With 90 plus percent of having these baby corals settle properly now, they estimated having close to 150,000 baby corals from this single event.

With this video, I was able to achieve something that was on my bucket list for many years, ever since Jamie Craggs first introduced this method and showed a glimpse of the future for conservation and preservation efforts and if I were to boldly predict, our industry’s future.  By coming here, not only I was to participate, but ultimately document and produce what I consider to be the most important video of my career at reefs.com.

I sincerely want to thank Keri O’Neil and Florida Aquarium for allowing my team to come up and participate/ document and release this footage, and I can’t wait to release part 2 where it will be more of a vlog style; you will see what happened through my eyes and perspective.

Thank you for watching this video. I hope you guys enjoy it and learn something from it. Please comment down below your thoughts and share this video to raise awareness of Florida Aquarium’s amazing work!

Happy reefing.

  • Afishionado

    Afishionado : a person who likes, knows about, and appreciates a usually fervently pursued interest or activity. (In this case, fish, corals and reef keeping). We are group of passionate hobbyists who are all about educating, creating innovative contents and providing eye popping visuals for hobbyists of all levels.

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