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Floating nurseries and robotic fleet deliver coral babies

Coral experts have scaled up their advanced technological approach to restoring baby corals on damaged areas of the Great Barrier Reef, using large inflatable ‘coral nurseries’ to help grow coral babies and a robotic ‘LarvalBoat’ to help disperse them back onto damaged sections of reef.

Project leader Southern Cross University Professor Peter Harrison has partnered with QUT-based Centre Chief Investigator Matthew Dunbabin for a second year, using a scaled-up QUT robotic design to help distribute the vital coral babies at Moore Reef off Cairns. It follows the successful trial of the world-first robotic coral delivery system last year, and larger hectare scale delivery on reefs in the Philippines earlier this year.

PHOTO: Professors Peter Harrison (left) and Matthew Dunbabin (right) / Photo by Gary Cranitch (Queensland Museum), courtesy Great Barrier Reef Foundation.

This year Professor Dunbabin’s robot fleet included two new LarvalBots and, for the first time, an inflatable LarvalBoat which carries a large volume of coral larvae at the water surface for targeted dispersal on the damaged reef areas, thereby increasing the efficiency of the larval supply.

Read full QUT media release>>

Posted November 27, 2019

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