Megafauna Monitoring Initiative

July 2019 marks the initiation of Tokoriki Diving’s Megafauna Monitoring Initiative (MMI). The primary purpose of the MMI is to quantify and monitor the local population of shark, ray, turtle and commercially valuable fish species many of which are either vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered. By doing so we are attempting to assess current population abundance and biodiversity levels, highlight seasonal changes in such levels, and observe if populations are increasing, decreasing or remaining constant over extended periods of time. Furthermore collecting such data allows us to accurately inform our guests; past, present and future, of what we are seeing and how often. The professional dive team collects the data on a daily basis from multiple dive sites within the Mamanuca group of islands.

So what did we see during our first month of the MMI?

Tokoriki Diving is pleased to announce that throughout July we encountered;

76 x White Tip Reef Shark (Triaenodon obesus)

15 x Black Tip Reef Shark (Carcharhinus melanopterus)

14 x Grey Reef Shark (Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos)

1 x Tawny Nurse Shark (Nebrius ferrugineus)

2 x Zebra Shark (Stegostoma fasciatum)

 

95 x Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas)

23 x Hawksbill Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricate)

 

6 x Bluespoted Ribbontail Ray (Taeniura lymma)

12 x Coral Sea Maskray (Neotrygon kuhlii)

1 x Tahitian Stingray (Pateobatis fai)

1 x Marbled Ray (Taeniurops meyeni)

7 x Whitespotted Eagle Ray (Aetobatus ocellatus)

 

11 x Narrow-barred Spanish Mackerel (Scomberomorus commerson)

8 x Humphead Wrasse (Cheilinus undulates)

2 x Great Barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda)

Join us next month to see what we encountered throughout August!

The Tokoriki Diving MMI is a Kristian Miles project. Kristian is a Tokoriki Diving PADI MSDT Instructor and resident Marine Biologist.

Alex Garland