Over the last 6 months many volunteers have joined the A Rocha Kenya (ARK) marine team, researching a variety of different species and topics. Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) are partnering with ARK in order to provide the volunteer’s access to the Watamu Marine National Park and KWS with data for management and reports. This provides a unique opportunity for volunteers to study their particular and hopefully produce peer review papers within the conservation, wildlife and marine sectors.
The main topics are Benjo’s work on coral cover, the impact of tourists on the coral reef and reef resilience and Peter’s joint work with Sophie on the fish associated with two different genus’ of coral.
Past volunteers have been researching: fishing communities and their livelihoods, intertidal pool fish and echinoderms (meaning spiky skin in Latin, including: sea urchins, starfish and sea cucumbers), shallow water corals and fish predation on juvenile corals.
The latest batch of volunteers and their projects are…
- Cassie, from US, Environmental Science (BA) graduate here to gain more practical experience, before further study – looking at a species of rock pool coral (Anomastrea irregularis) distribution and abundance
- Doro, from Germany, PhD student, here to gain hands on experience with A Rocha’s work and to add the botanical aspect to the marine programme – seagrass and seaweed biodiversity, distribution and possible threats
- Hannah, from UK, undergraduate student on a placement year – hawkfish, sandperch and ghost crab abundance and diversity
So be on the lookout for more posts about: corals, seagrass, seaweeds, hawkfish, sandperch and ghost crabs!