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Solutions today for reefs tomorrow


Citizen Science Groups & Projects

The following volunteer and non-profit organizations are making an impact on coral health:

  • Eyes of the Reef HawaiiA volunteer member-based organization developed to increase public awareness and engage communities in the monitoring and reporting of coral bleaching and disease, marine invasive species,  Crown-of-Thorn Sea Star (COTS) outbreaks and other reef diseases.
  • Reef Check WorldwideInternational non-profit organization leading citizen scientists to promote stewardship of sustainable reef communities worldwide. Reef Check is dedicated to the conservation of tropical coral reefs and temperate kelp forests.


For Teachers and Kids

The following are links to a variety of NOAA educational materials:

NOAA National Ocean Service – Educational Activities For Fun

NOAA Education Discovery Classroom –Coral Reef Conservation
Coral reefs are some of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. Thousands of species rely on reefs for survival. Thousands of communities all over the world also depend on coral reefs for food, protection and jobs.

The Coral Tutorial is an overview of the biology of and threats to coral reefs, as well as efforts being made to conserve and protect them. It includes images, animations, and videos.

The Roadmap to Resources complements the tutorial. It directs you to specific online coral data and information from the National Ocean Service and NOAA.

NOAA Coral Literature, Education & Outreach
The CLEO Program leverages techniques developed at NOAA/AOML under the Explorer of the Seas, Coral Health and Monitoring Program, and Integrated Coral Observing Network (ICON/CREWS) programs, under which knowledge transfer of oceanographic instrumentation and coral reef processes have been developed.

The Educational Modules are being developed primarily for middle school classes. Each module consists of three segments: background information (science behind the instrument), classroom experiment (experiment to test parameter instrument measures), and teacher’s section (describes the Educational Objectives / National Science Standards, Preliminary Activities/Demonstrations, Suggestions for teaching the concept, and Follow-up or Extension Activities for the class.) Students will be engaged to plot and manipulate the data, and to witness events live on the Web via the ICON/CREWS Coral Cam.

The goal of the Gray Literature Document Recovery Project part of the CLEO program is to accumulate pre-1990 gray literature in digital (PDF) format to support education, research and management objectives at all the areas where ICON/CREWS stations are being installed. (The ICON/CREWS project is pursuing a U.S. Coral Reef Task Force goal of establishing monitoring stations at all major U.S. coral reef areas by 2010.)

NOAA Coral Reef Information System (CoRIS)
NOAA’s CoRIS is designed to be a single point of access to NOAA coral reef information and data products, especially those derived from NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program.

CORIS is a web-based information portal that provides access to products from NOAA coral reef research, monitoring, and management activities, with emphasis on the U.S. states, territories, and remote island areas. NOAA activities include coral reef mapping, monitoring and assessment; natural and socioeconomic research and modeling; outreach and education; and management and stewardship.

CORIS provides a variety of ways to access NOAA coral data and information. The Regional Data Portal allows users to locate region-specific data and information in a clear, concise, and integrated way. The CoRIS Map Search is a Google Maps-based application that can display an array of products within a specific geographic area. The CoRIS Data & Publication search feature provides access to data and metadata created by NOAA research, citations of peer-reviewed articles, references to NOAA publications and conference proceedings, and links to NOAA and other coral reef websites. On-line access to literature is provided when available.

CORIS offers original essays on a variety of topics including coral and coral reef biology, deep water corals, coral diseases, and more. CORIS recently started offering a series of essays on coral reef ecosystems in United States jurisdictions in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, and the Gulf of Mexico. The essays give up-to-date information on the status and health of the coral reef ecosystems, and provide links to CoRIS-held metadata and data.

CORIS also offers a variety of other informative tools including an acronyms and abbreviations list, a taxonomic list of species in the metadata database, and a glossary which defines thousands of technical and scientific terms used in coral reef science and management. Many definitions are accompanied by colorful illustrations.