One of our survey methods that we do while diving at each site is photo transecting. Photo transects involve taking evenly measured photos of the reef bottom. This not only gives us a permanent record of the reef condition, but it also allows us to do a more detailed analysis after the dive. Executive Director Phil Renaud, Chief Scientist Andy Bruckner and Ken Marks have been taking photo transects on this trip to Rangiroa. Combined they take several photo transects every 5 meters from 30 to 5 meters depth.
Each photo they take covers one square meter of reef. Using these photos, in combination with various computer programs, we can calculate the percentage of each organism on the bottom, the different sizes of corals or even the total area covered by coral. Photo transects are just another tool we have to help us describe and evaluate these reefs.
(Photos by 1-Brian Beck, 2-Ken Marks)
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