THE CORAL EXPERIMENT - FREGATE ISLAND
Coral reefs are 400 times more diverse in species than other ocean habitats. The Seychelles lacks a national policy to conserve coral reefs, making it necessary to develop solutions for mitigating the effects of ocean acidification and rising sea surface temperatures. One innovative solution is Mineral Accretion Technology (MAT), which uses low voltage electricity to restore degraded reef ecosystems. In this coral experiment, 640 coral fragments from four species will be attached to 40 steel metal reef structures powered by MAT. The project aims to identify the most suitable and energy-efficient approach for coral restoration. The study examines the effects of MAT on coral growth, health, and survival, comparing continuous 24-hour electricity with 12 hours during the day or night. The project also evaluates the impact of cleaning structures and the settlement preferences of gametes for future large-scale restoration projects in Fregate Island and other locations.