Coral Watch is a not for profit organisation at the University of Queensland, Australia which developed a simple, non invasive way of monitoring coral bleaching and determining coral health. We use their health chart to monitor coral bleaching at snorkel sites located within the South Water Caye Marine Reserve that we frequently visit with our study abroad groups.
We encourage tourists and citizen scientists to partake in the monitoring project and build data sampling skills and experience with students during your study abroad program.
The health chart and data slate are both easy for anyone to use whilst snorkelling and allows for 20 data sets to be collected at a site. At Tobacco Caye Marine Station we summarise all this data keeping a copy at the station for students to build reports off of historical trends and also submit findings to Coral Watch which is added to a global database, monitoring coral bleaching.
We also have the Coral Watch education pack for students who are interested in learning more about coral bleaching, including work books, activities and documentaries.