Reef Check is looking to raise US$4,000 to charter a boat for a multi-day survey expedition of the Channel Islands off the California coast.
In the past decade, Reef Check has gathered a treasure trove of data on the underwater marine life at 16 sites at Anacapa, Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa and San Miguel islands.
Those surveys were done from smaller vessels and consequently smaller teams of volunteer divers, and several of the boats the organization used either cannot be used anymore and the others don’t have the range to reach some of the outer islands, according to Reef Check.
“Money from this campaign will go toward chartering a larger vessel which can accommodate 30 Reef Check California trained citizen scientists for a multi-day survey expedition with an extended range, being able to reach even the most distant islands,” the organization says on its Kickstarter page. “This opportunity to stay at sea for an extended period of time with a large group will allow us to maximize our efforts and resources to survey as many sites as possible during our expedition.”
Reef Check doesn’t want to just collect biological data, though. If the organization meets its $4,000 funding goal, Reef Check also wants to use Google Ocean‘s latest specialized underwater camera to take panoramic “underwater street view” pictures. Those photos would then be uploaded to Google Maps to help raise awareness of the conservation issues of this particular region:
“Climate change, plastics pollution, invasive species, oil spills, large scale marine disease–our oceans are changing. Please help us respond to these changes by gathering the information necessary to adapt our management of these unique waters.”
To learn more, check out Reef Check’s KickStarter page or check out their video below.