Fixed and suspended coral nurseries in the Philippines: Establishing the first step in the "gardening concept" of reef restoration

Lee Shaish, Gideon Levy, Edgardo Gomez, Baruch Rinkevich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The worldwide degradation of reef ecosystems has promoted the advocators of restoration acts to the foreground. Here, we describe the results of the first step of large-scale restoration based on the "gardening with corals" concept. During June-September 2005, two coral nurseries were established in Bolinao, the Philippines, in front of Silaqui Island, in a shallow (2 m depth) sandy lagoon. Two types of nurseries were employed: (1) suspended nursery; (2) leg-fixed nursery. The nursery held a total number of 6824 ramets, from seven coral species representing different growth forms (branching, leaf-like and sub-massive forms) and different growth rates (fast and slow growing species). Each species was represented by several genotypes. During one year, we analyzed and compared survivorship, bleaching and growth rates of fragments between the different nurseries, species and genotypes. Survivorship, which was high in both nurseries, > 85%, fluctuated between the different species indicating that different species require different rearing methodologies. Mortality and detachment was subjected to environmental conditions, especially affected by the typhoons prevailing in this part of the world. The one-year nursery phase produced sizeable colonies, especially of branching forms, suitable for transplantation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-97
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 7 Apr 2008
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study is part of the PhD dissertation of L. Shaish and supported by grants from the GEF/World Bank Coral Reef Targeted Research and the INCO-DEV (REEFRES-510657) projects. We thank Bolinao Marine Laboratory staff for their help and hospitality. This is UPMSI Contribution No. 364. [SS]


  • Coral
  • Gardening concept
  • Nursery
  • Philippines
  • Restoration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science


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