Al Wajh and Yanbu
The Living Oceans Foundation continued its series of ocean research expeditions off the Red Sea coast of Saudi Arabia in May, 2008, focusing on Yanbu Barrier Reef and Al Wajh Bank area, north of the city of Jeddah. In collaboration with the National Commission for Wildlife Conservation and Development (NCWCD), National Coral Reef Institute (NCRI), the World Conservation Union (IUCN), and Cambridge Coastal Research Unit, we mapped and characterized shallow marine habitats and assessed the health and resilience of these aquatic ecosystems. The goal of this project was to create ocean floor habitat maps from multi-spectral satellite imagery and an airborne hyperspectral sensor, and to conduct SCUBA surveys of fish, coral, marine mammals, and benthic habitats. All of these maps have been published, and can now be found on our World Reef Map as well as in the Atlas of Saudi Arabian Red Sea Marine Habitats.