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    Reef Monitoring at Isla Del Coco Allowed to Identify More than 100 Species of Fish

    It was possible to determine that the coral cover remains stable

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    Monitoring carried out in coral reefs at Isla del Coco allowed the identification of more than 100 species between sharks and fish, and 25 different species of marine invertebrates were located, among them: snails and starfish.

    The coral reef monitoring data in Cocos Island has been carried out by the staff of the Coco Marine Conservation Area (ACMC) since 2016 and is very important because it allows monitoring the health of the coral reefs or better known as the “jungles of the sea”.

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    With the analysis, in addition to obtaining details on the coral cover, the species that live and move through the currents near the Isla del Coco National Park are studied.

    Abundant Sea life

    During these years of the application of this monitoring, the coverage of the corals located in the northern part of the island was calculated, and more than 100 species were identified among sharks and fish, and 25 species of marine invertebrates were located among snails, stars of the sea, among others counting 3832 macroinvertebrates.

    Stability

    In this analysis, it was also possible to determine that the coral cover was stable during the last 5 years, there was only one year that the coral cover presented whitening in 17% of the colonies.This could be due to the atypical warming of the Pacific waters due to the El Niño phenomenon.

    This first analysis of the data had the support of organizations such as the Forever Costa Rica Association (ACRXS), Friends of Cocos Island (Faico), and the National University (UNA).

    The team of park rangers who participated in this project has compiled information at different monitoring sites in Cocos Island National Park on the coverage of corals, fish, invertebrates, the roughness of surfaces, among other factors. During these years they have managed to monitor an area of ​​71 thousand m2, which is equivalent to 10 soccer fields.

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