We help diverse local communities protect coral reefs and chart their own sustainable futures. Our science-based conservation strategies ensure healthy reefs continue to support thriving human and wildlife communities.

20

tons of sediment kept off
Maui’s coral reefs in 2020

130

tourism operators trained in México,
Belize, and Honduras in 2020

95%

reduction in bacteria in coastal waters along West End in Roatán, Honduras

Educate. Engage. Ensure.

Our local work on the ground—and in the water—focuses on:

Educating local communities

Local tourism and fishing businesses, concerned residents, and local governments all care about the health of their reefs. We share the results of our rigorous scientific monitoring and research with local communities so they can make informed decisions, and we support them in protecting their local resources.

Engaging with partners

We build alliances that lead to evidence-based policies and effective, scalable reef management. Multi-stakeholder partnerships with governments, agencies, research institutions, corporations, NGOs, and community members are key to ensuring that communities and reefs mutually thrive.

Ensuring reefs have what they need to survive

Reefs need time to adapt to climate change, and reducing major stressors gives them the critical time they need. Clean water, healthy fisheries, and well-managed marine protected areas ensure that local reefs can rebound and continue to thrive.

Investing in local communities

Ana Bessy Valdez Martinez is one of three community scientists that we employ in Honduras to gain a better understanding of what is happening to local fisheries. Through the relationships she’s built, she’s created a network of local fishers who participate in science and support rules and regulations.

Local Stories

Tela Bay’s 2021 Closed Fishing Season Shows Success

Tela Bay, Honduras—Recent monitoring data collected from Los Micos Lagoon demonstrated a 483 percent increase in fish biomass after a closed fishing season in 2021, signifying both higher quantities and larger sizes of fish. Likewise, it showed an increase in diversity of species and trophic levels.  Los Micos Lagoon often suffers from overfishing, impacting populations… Continue Reading →

coastline in maui hawaii

CORAL Joins Maui Nui Makai Network

The Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL) is honored to join the Maui Nui Makai Network—a network of community groups from across Maui Nui that protect and care for marine and coastal ecosystems. The network was established in 2013 when community organizations decided they would be stronger working together than separately. Network members meet regularly to learn… Continue Reading →

Honduras fishers return to shore

With Healthy Fisheries, Everyone Wins

Santos Banegas has been fishing off the coast of Puerto Castilla, Honduras, for the last 35 years. At the start of his fishing career, he remembers routinely catching 300 to 500 pounds of fish a day, which meant he could easily feed and support his family. Today, he’s lucky if he catches 30 to 40… Continue Reading →

Catalogo de especies de bahia de tela

CORAL Creates First-Ever Fish Catalogs in Honduras

Lea esto en español When Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL) researchers first began working with fisheries on the North Coast of Honduras, they encountered an all-too-common dynamic: Local fishers held a wealth of knowledge of the various fish species of the region, but that information wasn’t documented anywhere. The local knowledge is passed down from generation… Continue Reading →

Roatan coastline

Could Cleaner Water Mean Farewell for Coral Disease?

Lea esto en español When improperly treated sewage enters the marine environment, it can have devastating effects on a coral reef. Not only does it bring bacteria that can pose a threat to human health, but it also brings nutrients that fuel the growth of algae—a fierce competitor in the coral reef ecosystem. Algae compete… Continue Reading →

Working group meeting in Tela

Want to Protect Fisheries? Involve the Community.

Lea esto en español During a recent interview, Dr. Antonella Rivera, CORAL’s Principal Investigator in Honduras, perfectly summed up our approach to conservation: “If we really want to make a difference with science, we have to involve the people who are most affected.” People and communities are always at the forefront of our work to… Continue Reading →

Paula Urrutia takes a water sample from the aquaculture system

Aquaculture: An Alternative to Overfishing in Honduras

Lea esto en español Could aquaponics and aquaculture be a sustainable alternative to overfishing? According to Julio San Martin Chicas, our Principal Program Coordinator in Tela Bay, Honduras, the answer is yes: If specific fish can be adequately and competitively farmed using small-scale aquaculture, then we can alleviate fishing pressure on the reef. Aquaculture refers… Continue Reading →

We work on three priority initiatives to save reefs locally:

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