Seascape Caribbean was contracted by Sandals Resorts International in 2016 to oversee impacts and develop value-positive remediation options related to their proposed stilted villas in Montego Bay. Remediation works included mangrove and coral culture as habitat enhancement and restoration projects within the existing fish sanctuaries of Bogue Lagoon and The Point in Montego Bay. The mangrove works have been contracted to the Discovery Bay Marine Laboratory and Seascape Caribbean has been subcontracted to provide 4500 cultured staghorn corals in a cohesive thicket related to The Point fish sanctuary.
The ecosystem foundational staghorn corals of the Montego Bay were heavily impacted by disease through the 1980s, as was most of the Caribbean.
Montego Bay holds at least four distinct fishing communities and the local reefs are heavily fished by spear, net and fish trap. Enforcement within the sanctuaries is often insufficient and fishing persists.
Current reef system is dominated by microalgae, representing a stable-state disallowing a resurgence of coral. Reefs are the green-brown of algae rather than the bright golds and greens of healthy coral.
Sea-urchins of the genus Diadema are not consumed in Jamaica, thus have patchy abundance providing spaces of algae-free and relatively clean substrate appropriate for coral planting.
Provide an ecologically equitable remediation for development impacts.
Improve staghorn coral abundance and nursery habitat availability within the Montego Bay Point special fisheries conservation area (fish sanctuary).
Turn a remediation cost into a guest activity and marketable asset for Sandals Resorts International and the Sandals Foundation. Demarkation signage holds client logos and is set both at the surface and underwater.
Propagate and plant 4500 branching staghorn (Acropora cervicornis) corals to mid-depth reefs of The Montego Bay Point fish sanctuary. Nurseries were deployed and populated January through March of 2018 using five distinct parent lineages of the Montego Bay, one of which is known to be temperature-tolerant from previous work (2005). Planting is expected to occur through the early summer of 2019.
Promote Montego Bay as a SCUBA diving destination, in collaboration with the Sandals Foundation and the Montego Bay Marine Park Trust.