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ICRS (International Coral Reef Standard) Ltd.

International Coral Reef Standard Ltd
Reef Audits

Each reef can be markedly different in a variety of ways including type, structure and composition. Consequently,  no one standardised audit method could realistically be expected to adequately catalogue all reefs sufficiently.

Through painstaking research, practice and experience ICRS have devised a range of effective and efficient surveys that are economically viable without compromising scientific integrity.

Certain aspects of data collection are standardised in order to maintain statistical credibility. With any one reef, a number of different survey strategies are likely to be deployed. A decision on survey techniques will be taken after onsite investigations, inspection of bathymetric charts and reconnaissance dives. Baseline data is transferable into the Countries' databases and protocols.

Because most surveys utilise present-day methods of data collation which are time consuming if they strive to attain a high level of accuracy and detail vital for authenticity, they become economically prohibitive.

Aware of this, ICRS have developed unique,  ground-breaking and well rehearsed practices that eradicate the potential short-comings of traditional methods, providing reef audits that are both adequately detailed and cost effective.

These are some of the most commonly used audits conducted by ICRS:
  • Biodiversity Audit
  • Static or roving surveys.
  • Transect or quadrant methods.
  • All flora, fauna, invertebrates classified and quantified.
  • Mapping of seabed by echo sounder and GPS.
  • Water analysis for pollution.
  • Photographic survey.
  • Night survey and fish count.
  • Micro survey for larval recruitment.
  • Classification of substrate types.

Surveys will measure the abundance and diversity of:

  • Fish
  • Invertebrates
  • Plants / algae
  • Living, dead and diseased coral
  • Juvenile coral numbers
  • Fish sizes
  • Commercial species
  • Rugosity
  • Environmental factors - salinity, turbidity, temperature
  • Pollution and heavy metal concentrations.
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