Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Section One
 Introduction to artificial reef...
 The science and technology of artificial...
 Some basic considerations of underwater...
 Oceanographic data collection and...
 Site selection and evaluation by...
 Collecting biolgoical data: benthic...
 Sampling and studying fish on artificial...
 Survey techniques: identifying...
 Disseminating information on reef...
 Training volunteer divers to research...
 Underwater research project management,...
 Establishng an artificial reef...
 Guidelines for organizing a volunteer...
 Section Two: Underwater research...
 Appendices A - U

Group Title: Technical paper - Florida Sea Grant College Program ; no. 63
Title: Artificial reef research diver's handbook
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00076608/00001
 Material Information
Title: Artificial reef research diver's handbook
Series Title: Technical paper
Alternate Title: Diver's handbook
Physical Description: xiv, 198 p. : ill., maps ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Halusky, Joseph G
Publisher: Florida Sea Grant College Program, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville FL
Publication Date: 1991?
Subject: Artificial reefs -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Deep diving -- Handbooks, manuals, etc   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
bibliography   ( marcgt )
handbook   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Statement of Responsibility: principal editor, Joseph G. Halusky.
Funding: This collection includes items related to Florida’s environments, ecosystems, and species. It includes the subcollections of Florida Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit project documents, the Florida Sea Grant technical series, the Florida Geological Survey series, the Howard T. Odum Center for Wetland technical reports, and other entities devoted to the study and preservation of Florida's natural resources.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00076608
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida
Resource Identifier: oclc - 29622665


This item has the following downloads:

UF00076608 ( PDF )

Table of Contents
        Cover 1
        Cover 2
    Title Page
        Title Page 1
        Title Page 2
    Table of Contents
        Table of Contents 1
        Table of Contents 2
        Table of Contents 3
        Table of Contents 4
        Table of Contents 5
        Table of Contents 6
        Table of Contents 7
        Table of Contents 8
        Table of Contents 9
        Preface 1
        Preface 2
    Section One
        Section 1
        Section 2
    Introduction to artificial reef research diving: theory and practice, by Joseph G. Halusky
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
    The science and technology of artificial reefs, by Robert L. Jenkins
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
    Some basic considerations of underwater scientific photography, by Joseph G. Halusky
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
    Oceanographic data collection and reef mapping, by Christopher Jones
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
    Site selection and evaluation by divers, by Heyward Mathews
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
    Collecting biolgoical data: benthic and planktonic plants and animals, by Quinton White
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
    Sampling and studying fish on artificial reefs, by Stephen Bortone & James Bohnsack
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
    Survey techniques: identifying the economic benefits of artificial reef habitat
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
    Disseminating information on reef research activities, by Thomas M. Leahy
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
    Training volunteer divers to research and document artificial reefs for their community, by Joseph G. Halusky
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
    Underwater research project management, by Gregg R. Stanton
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
    Establishng an artificial reef data archives fo rthe community, by Joesph G. Halusky & Shawn Brayton
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
    Guidelines for organizing a volunteer reef research organization, by Scott R. Braunsroth & Dennis Short
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
    Section Two: Underwater research methods summarires & equipment descriptions
        Section 1
        Section 2
        Underwater research method summary
        Excavation by protable couple jet blower
            Page 91
        Fish assessment - cinetransect
            Page 92
        Fish assessment - point count
            Page 93
        Fish assessment - rapid visual technique
            Page 94
        Fish assessment - species/time random count
            Page 95
            Page 96
        Fish assessment - transect
            Page 97
            Page 98
        Mapping - circular strip map
            Page 99
        Mapping - circular strip map
            Page 100
        Pop Warner reef map
            Page 100A
        Subdivision Level 1
            Unnumbered ( 123 )
        Mapping - small area survey grids
            Page 101
        Position finding
            Page 102
            Page 103
        Sediment - bioturbation rate
            Page 104
        Sediment - sand transport
            Page 105
        Sediment - settlement rate
            Page 106
        Stone crabe reef module - current
            Page 107
    Appendices A - U
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
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Full Text

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Central Science
APR 2 3 19S3

University of Florida

TP 63

research, extension, and education for a better coastal environment

Florida Sea Grant College is supported by award of the Office of Sea Grant, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S.
Department of Commerce, grant number NA89AA-D-SG053, under provisions of the National Sea Grant College and Programs Act of 1966.
This information is publishedby the Sea Grant Extension Program whichfunctions as a component of theFlorida Cooperative Extension Service
John T. Woeste, dean, in conducting Cooperative Extension work in Agriculture, Home Economics, and Marine Sciences, State of Florida, U.S.
Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Commerce, and Boards of County Commissioners, cooperating. Printed and distributed in
furtherance of theActs of Congress of May 8 and June 14,1914. The Florida Sea Grant College is an Equal Employment Opportunity-Affirmative
Action employer authorized to provide research, educational information, and other services only to individuals and institutions that function
without regard to race, color, sex, age, handicap, or national origin.

This handbook is dedicated to Edward A. Kalakauskis,
a tireless reef research diver and sports fisherman
"volunteer", who has been the common thread that
helped make all this possible.

It is further dedicated to the memory of three "Artificial Reef
Pioneers" whose work will long benefit fisherman and divers off
the Northeast Florida coast:

Linden Heston Jacksonville Offshore Sport Fishing Club

Richard "Dick" Longo Daytona Beach Sport SCUBA Diver

Col. "C.M." McCormick Ancient City Gamefish Association
St. Augustine, FL

Artificial Reef Research


Principal Editor
Joseph G. Halusky
Florida Sea Grant Extension Agent
Marine Education Center at Marineland
St. Augustine, Florida


65RANT -
Florida Sea Grant College Program
PO Box 110409
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611-0409
Technical Paper TP-63



List of Authors.......... XI
Preface.......... XIII


1. Introduction to Artificial Reef Research Diving Theory and Practice, Joseph G. Halusky
Scientific Diving and Diving Technology ......... 1
Scientific Diving Safety
Scientific Diving Limitations
Leadership and Scientific Diving
Scientific Diving Tasks & Data Collection ..........3
Generalized Tasks of Diving Scientists
Collecting Data
Raw and Reduced Data
Data Collecting & Preservation Guidelines
Summary.......... 4
Artificial Reef Research Diver's Basic Concepts Summary ......... 4

2. The Science and Technology ofArtificial Reefs, Robert L. Jenkins
Science: A Definition ......... 5
Scientific Research and Technology ......... 6
Artificial Reef Research ......... 7
The Scientific Method or Process......... 7
Deductive Method
Inductive Method
Data and Its Successful Accumulation ......... 8
Data Gathering Methods
Quality of Data
Accuracy and Precision
Time and Data
Interpretation and Organization..........12
Role of Research Diver.......... 13
Summary.......... 13
References.......... 13

3. Some Basic Considerations of Underwater Scientific Photography, Joseph G. Halusky
Basic Components of a Documentary Photo ......... 15
Key Elements of a Scientific Photograph

Basic Methods for Underwater Scientific Photography.......... 15
Single Event Photo Method
Systematic Photo Series
Storage and Retrieval of Scientific Photos
Suggested References ..........17

4. Oceanographic Data Collection and Reef Mapping, Christopher Jones
Reef Stability ........ 19
Settlement and Siltation
Collapse and Scattering
Oceanographic Data.......... 20
Surface Waves
Water Temperature
Dissolved Oxygen
Bottom Sediments
Sediment Correlation
Mapping.......... 26
Establishing Control Points
Locating Objects on the Bottom
References. ......... 28

5. Site Selection and Evaluation by Divers, Heyward Mathews
Some general Considerations for Reef Sites ......... 29
Role of Divers in Site Planning
Preliminary Surface Survey
Underwater Site Survey
Biological Survey Report
Post-Deployment Survey
References.......... 31

6. Collecting Biological Data: Benthic and Planktonic Plants andAnimals, Quinton White
Why Sample Benthic and Planktonic Organisms? ..........33
The Difficulties of Sampling Benthic and Planktonic Organisms......... 33
Identification of Plants and Encrusting Organisms......... 34

Identification of Plants and Encrusting Organisms.......... 34
Planning and Preparation for Sampling ......... 34
Standardize Everything
How Big is a Sample?
How to Collect Samples
Materials and Methods
References......... 36

7. Sampling and Studying Fish on Artificial Reefs, Stephen Bortone & James Bohnsack
Introduction to Fish..........39
Reasons and Objectives for Studying Artificial Reef Fish ........... 39
Problems Associated with Fish on Artificial Reefs.......... 40
Collecting Data on Artificial Reefs........... 41
Physical Environment
Fish and Fauna Data
Fish Collection .......... 42
Specimen Preservation .......... 43
Species Identification ........... 44
Importance of Field Notes.......... 45
Sampling Methods
Moving Transect Sample
Fixed Point Sampling
Fish Survey Data Types.......... 47
Species List
Qualitative Species Abundance
Relative Species Abundance
Absolute Abundance Data
Data Analysis .......... 49
Graphic Analysis
Prediction and Trends
Species Relationships

8. Techniques: Identifying Economic Benefits of Artificial Reef Habitat,
Walter Milon & Ronald Schmeid
The Basis for Economic Benefits.......... 53

User Day Value Methods.......... 54
Comparative Valuation Method
Travel Cost Method
Contingent Valuation Method
Survey Methods
Summary.......... 56
References.......... 57

9. Disseminating Information on Reef Research Activities, Thomas M. Leahy
How to Use Channels of Communication........... 59
Personal Channels.......... 59
Person-to-person on a one-to-one basis
Person to person contact at group meetings
Presenting the Information
Use of Slides
Newsletters.......... 60
Writing the Newsletter
Packaging the Newsletter
Distribution the Newsletter
Mass Media Channels.......... 61
Using the Newspaper
Preparing the Press Release
Magazines.......... 62
Writing the Magazine Article
Radio.......... 63
Using Radio
Being Interviewed
Your Own Program
Writing for Radio
Preparing a Public Service Announcement (PSA)
Using Commercial Television Stations
Using the Local Cable TV Channel
Appearing On Television
Summing Up.......... 66
Suggested Reading ........ 66

10. Training Volunteer Divers to Research and Document Artificial Reefs for Their
Community, Joseph G. Halusky

Role of the Sea Grant Extension Program........... 67
Planning Committee
Student Selection
The Artificial Reef Research Diver Training Program.......... 69
Model Description ......... 69
The Aim of the ARRDTP
ARRDTP Course Outline and Topics.......... 69
Model ARRDTP Agenda .......... 69
Workshop I. Orientation to Scientific Diving and Diving Skills Review.
Workshop II. Underwater Science Photography and Public Relations.
Workshop Il. Artificial Reef Site Selection, Documentation, Mapping, Engineering, Construction and
Collecting Physical Data.
Workshop IV. Artificial Reef Biological Sampling and Building a Reference Collection Emphasis on
Workshop V. Sampling and Documenting Artificial Reef Fish Populations.
Workshop VI. Artificial Reef Research Expedition Leadership Training.
Workshop VII. Planning an Artificial Reef Documentation Program for the Community.
Notes.......... 71
Discussion ...........71
Summary ......... 71
References and Suggested Reading .........72
Florida Sea Grant Artificial Reef Publications .......... 72

11. Underwater Research Project Management, Gregg R. Stanton
Perception of a problem...........73
Identify a problem.......... 74
Logistical Areas described in detail........... 75
Equipment & Air
Safety Officer
Principal Investigator
Dive Supervisor
Dive Stations Described ........ 76
Chief Scientist
Dive Master
Time Keeper
Standby Diver

Boat Operator
Team Leader
References.......... 77

12. Establishing an Artificial Reef Data Archives for the Community,
Joseph G. Halusky & Shawn Brayton
Artificial Reef Data Archives .......... 79
The Archivist
The Archives Components........... 80
Historic Records
Reef Site Data and Project Files
Reference Collection Documentation
Reef Research Personnel & Training Records
Research Equipment Records and Manuals
Using the Archives and Specimen Collection ......... 83
Who owns the Data and who should have assess to it?
Controlling and Retrieving the Reef Research Information
Useful Organizations .......... 84

13. Guidelines for Organizing a Volunteer Reef Research Organization,
Scott R. Braunsroth & Dennis Short
Initial Considerations ......... 85
Organizational Structure
The Executive Board
The Committees
Going Public
Development of the Constitution.......... 87
Naming the Organization
The Charter
Duties of Officers and Committees
Funding and Incorporation
Academic Liaison .......... 90
Volunteers and Scientists as Partners



Underwater Research Methods Summaries & Equipment Descriptions
Underwater Research Method Summary Example Sheet.......... 90A
Excavation by Portable Couple Jet Blower.......... 91
Fish Assessment Cinetransect.......... 92
Fish Assessment Point Count.......... 93
Fish Assessment Rapid Visual Technique.......... 94
Fish Assessment Species/Time Random Count.......... 95
Fish Assessment Transect.......... 97
Mapping Circular Strip Map.......... 99
Pop Warner Reef Map.......... 100A /
Mapping Small Area Survey Grids.......... 101
Position Finding......... 102
Sediment Bioturbation Rate.......... 104
Sediment Sand Transport.......... 105
Sediment Settlement Rate........... 106
Stone Crab Reef Module Current.......... 107

Appendices........ 109
Appendix A.......... 109
Appendix B.......... 111
Appendix C.......... 119
Appendix D.......... 123
Appendix E.......... 125
Appendix F.......... 131
Appendix G.......... 137
Appendix H.......... 147
Appendix I.......... 157
Appendix J.......... 161
Appendix K.......... 163
Appendix L.......... 165
Appendix M.......... 167
Appendix N.......... 169
Appendix 0.......... 171
Appendix P.......... 173
Appendix Q.......... 175
Appendix R.......... 187
Appendix S.......... 189
Appendix T .......... 191
Appendix U.......... 195


James Bohnsack
Southeast Fisheries Center
National Marine Fisheries Service
75 Virginia Beach Drive
Miami, FL 33149.

Steven A. Bortone
Biology Department
University of West Florida
Pensacola, FL 32514.

Scott R. Braunsroth
1424 Fruit Cove Rd. N.
Jacksonville, FL 32223.

Shawn Brayton
Jacksonville Scubanauts Reef Research Team
10881 Great Southern Drive
Jacksonville, FL 32223.

Joseph G. Halusky
North East Florida Sea Grant Extension Agent
233 Marine Center Drive
St. Augustine, FL 32086.

Robert L. Jenkins
Director of Operations and Husbandry
National Aquarium in Baltimore
501 E. Pratt St.
Baltimore MD 21202.

Christopher P. Jones
Coastal Science and Engineering,
P.O. Box 8056
Columbia, SC 29202.

Gary Kirkland
1811 Indian Wood
Neptune Beach, FL 32233.

Thomas M. Leahy
Former Director
Florida Sea Grant Communications
and Publications
Editorial Dept.
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611.

Heyward Mathews
Professor of Oceanography
St. Petersburg Jr. College
Clearwater Campus
2465 Drew St.
Clearwater, FL 33575.

J. Walter Milon,
Department of Food and Resource Economics
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611.

Ronald L Schmied
National Marine Fisheries Service
9450 Koger Blvd.
St. Petersburg, FL 33702.

Dennis Short
Jacksonville Scubanauts Reef Reserch Team

Gregg R. Stanton
Research Diving Coordinator
Academic Diving Program
Florida State University
Rm. 10 Montgomery Bldg.
Tallahassee, FL 32306.

A. Quinton White
Department of Biology and Marine Science
Jacksonville University
Jacksonville, FL 32211.


A artificial reef construction in Florida is largely
result of volunteer efforts. Historically, vol-
unteer reef builders have had difficulty evaluating
the success of their efforts since divers were usu-
ally not called upon to observe the reef material af-
ter placement. If divers were available, they
generally had little or no training in objective un-
derwater data gathering and documentation meth-
ods. Properly trained sport divers can assist reef
builders by providing feedback information and
documentation. Volunteer reef research divers
can provide a valuable public service, not other-
wise available from state or academic institutions,
by establishing their own reef research, monitor-
ing and documentation projects and storing this in-
formation in a publicly accessible reef data
The purpose of this Artificial Reef Research
Divers Handbook is to provide background infor-
mation and guidelines for sport divers:
1) to gather information about their com-
munity's artificial reefs;
2) to document and store this information
in a way that can be retrieved and under-
stood by the reef builders, government
agencies, the research community, other
interested volunteer organizations and the
3) to communicate their observations in a
credible fashion.
The handbook is organized into two primary
sections. Section I consists of thirteen chapters
which discuss the theoretical and practical aspects
of physical and biological data collection underwa-
ter, project planning, training, public relations, set-
ting up an archive and organizational structure of
a reef research team. Section II is what might be
called the "recipe" section or "Underwater Re-
search Methods Summaries". It, like any recipe
book, provides step by step guidelines for various
underwater data gathering methods.
Scientific Diving to gather information
(Data) underwater is NOT merely jumping in the
ocean, looking around and reporting back to the
surface what the diver "thinks" is going on "down
there". It is the establishment and use of SYS-
TEMATIC and STANDARDIZED procedures for
gathering OBJECTIVE information which is
added to the DIVE LOG and the data ARCHIVE.
It may include the collection and preservation of
specimens for a REFERENCE COLLECTION, as
well as the making of detailed REEF SCATTER
MONITORING, through documented photo-
graphs, video surveys and systematic photo tran-
sect surveys over long periods of time to capture
changes which otherwise might remain unob-

MUNICATIONS is at the heart of a successful un-
derwater research program, whether if its done by
professional scientific divers or volunteers.
This handbook will not make the reader a re-
search scientist! Professional academic degrees
and training are needed to conduct credible ma-
rine science. Becoming a marine scientist re-
quires the completion of degree work at a college
and university. This cannot be achieved in a sin-
gle extension course, handbook or dive shop train-
ing program.
This is NOT a handbook on diving technol-
ogy. No attempt is made to discuss methods of
diving, diving theory, new life support equipment
or technique. There is no discussion about rescue
or emergency procedures, except to say that such
procedures should be established on any dive.
There are many "Dive Manuals" available to ful-
fill these needs.
There is considerable discussion about
safety procedures which might be different from
those practiced in sport diving, and APPENDIX
A is a reference to the Scientific Dive Standards
adopted by the American Academy of Underwa-
ter Sciences. Any research diving activity should
seriously consider the adoption of these standards
to their underwater research activities.
There is discussion about the need for the
scientific dive teams to establish organizational
procedures to safely conduct a research dive op-
eration and insure the data is preserved. Chapter
11 on "Project Management" provides a thorough
discussion about how to organize a research dive
expedition, to include logistics and descriptions of
specific job assignments. Chapter 12 discusses
how to establish an "Archives and Reference Col-
lection" to preserve the data and Chapter 13 dis-
cusses how to organize a "Reef Research Team."
The underwater research methods included
should not be construed as the "only" or even the
"best" method for gathering the type of data dis-
cussed. Good science methodology depends on
the nature of the question that is being asked, the
technology available to get the data and the situ-
ation it is to be collected in. Often, the questions
will change as new information is made available;
as the technology changes and the situation in the
field changes. The intent of this "Section I Un-
derwater Research Methods Section" is merely to
provide ideas as a basis for deciding what data
gathering strategies might be used in a reef re-
search project. Each "Method" should be ad-
justed to meet the users situation.
Section I should continue to grow. I en-
courage the readers) to develop, field test and
write their own Underwater Research Methods
Summaries and share them with others through
the Florida Sea Grant Extension Program. This
can be accomplished by copying the blank Under-
water Research Methods Summary form, found at


the beginning of Section II, filling it in and mailing
it to:
Florida Sea Grant Extension Program
Building 803
University of Florida,
Gainesville, FL 32611.

The Appendix of this handbook is a collec-
tion of supporting materials that should help the
readers to start their own reef research program. It,
like the "Methods Summaries", should be used as a
guide only, and modified to suit the users needs.
The "Artificial Reef Research Divers Hand-
book" should help volunteers to take the first step
in the scientific method MAKE AN OBSERVA-
TION about their communities' artificial reefs and
DOCUMENT IT. It is specific in that it focuses
on underwater data collection methods with basic
SCUBA equipment normally used by sport divers.
It uses simplified methodology found in a number
of science disciplines. It is unique in that it concen-
trates on teaching volunteers how to design, lead
and store information for THEIR OWN artificial
reef documentation projects. Its practical end is
aimed at improved reef monitoring and construc-
tion programs through volunteerism.
The Florida Sea Grant Extension Programs,
Artificial Reef Research Divers Training Program
and this Handbook, would not be possible were it
not for the many volunteer scientists, sport divers,
fishermen, citizens and agency people who will-
ingly gave their time and energy to this effort. The
workshops held since 1980 was dependent on
those individuals who freely gave their weekends,
boat time and equipment in support of this activity.
To all of you volunteers who helped, too numerous
to list here, we offer this "Thank You!" We owe a
special thanks to the original students who gradu-
ated from this training, for in many respects, you
were the "Guinea Pigs" in this grand experiment.
The program would have failed without your pa-
tience and dedicated spirit.
In any program, a few individuals always
stand out for their extra dedication to the project.
Foremost, is Ed Kalakauskis, to whom this Hand-
book is dedicated. Ed, a graduate of the first work-
shop in Daytona, has continued to be deeply
involved with all the training programs since, and
is the connecting strand between the reef builders
and reef research divers. He continues to freely
give volunteer time to all reef activities throughout
the North East Florida region, serving as an inspira-
tion to all.
I would also like to recognize and thank Dr.
Quinton White, Jacksonville University, who, with-
out compensation, freely gave his time and talents
to this program, from the very beginning. He has
kept a sincere interest in the projects of its gradu-
ates and serves as their academic advisor. He has
provided additional extension training in Inverte-

brate Biology for the Jacksonville Scubanauts Re-
search Team.
Others who deserve special thanks for sup-
porting the training and keeping the program grow-
ing include: Don Serbousek, Thiele Wetzel, Dan
O'Brien, Pete Heebner, H.C. "Hap" Jones, Dick
Starke, Halifax Sport Fishing Club and Ormond
Anchor Chasers Dive Club from the Daytona
Beach area; Jim Netherton, Larry Mahn, George
Miller, Rick Holmlund, Gene Burns, Kevin McEl-
roy, Bill Kerr, Ancient City Gamefish Associa-
tion, N.E. Florida Marlin Association, Camachee
Cove Marina, Sea Hunt Enterprises Dive Shop
from St. Augustine; and Aquifer Dive center of
Jacksonville. Some individuals willingly provided
leadership during the early stages of this program
and include: Bob & Joy Engel, Dennis & Wendy
Short, Larry Tipping, Don Landis, John Ham-
mond, Marilyn Halusky, Jim Powell, Beth Straw-
bridge, Mark & Kim Ullman, Gideon Carpenter,
Gary Kirkland, Jacksonville Offshore Sports Fish-
ing Club, Jacksonville Scubanauts Dive Club,
Aquifer Dive Center from the Jacksonville area;
Leon Dufresne from Brevard County and Mike
Mcallister from Nassau County. I apologize for
any omissions from this list and regret that I can-
not list all the volunteers who have helped make
this program the success that it is. To all I offer
my warmest "THANKS"!
A special thanks goes to Ms. Ginger Layton
Pophel and Ms. Janice Hoskins, for their tireless
and patient labors in assembling this manuscript.
There are a few "Artificial Reef Pioneers"
who are no longer with us. They each deserve spe-
cial recognition for much of their thinking is
found in this handbook. Perhaps, their pioneering
work will live on through this publication. We
will never forget them. They include:
Dick Longo
Assistant Divemaster
1980 Daytona Beach Artificial Reef
Research Diver Training.
Col. C. M. McCormick
Ancient City Gamefish Association
past Chairman of the Reef Committee.
Linden Heston
Jacksonville Offshore Sportsfishing Club
Reef Committee and one of the early reef
builders in Jacksonville

We, the authors, wish continued progress
and success for all who are involved and con-
cerned with the wise management of our marine
habitat resources.
Joe G. Halusky
September, 1991



Chapter 1

Introduction To Artificial Reef

Research Diving: Theory And Practice

By Joseph G. Halusky

artificial Reef Research Diving has its roots in
:Lscientific Diving and Diving Technology
which have evolved since the invention of self con-
tained underwater breathing apparatus (SCUBA)
in the early 1940's. Early explorers of the under-
sea made use of SCUBA technology to observe
and document new discoveries that were reported
in scientific publications, movies, the media and
popular literature. In the 1950's, SCUBA equip-
ment was first introduced to the scientific commu-
nity in the United States, through the efforts of
researchers at the Scripps Institute of Oceanogra-
phy. Since then, the use of SCUBA and surface
supplied diving technology has evolved to become
as indispensable as the microscope, as a tool for
scientific data gathering.

Scientific Diving &
Diving Technology
Scientific Diving and Diving Technology
are not the same research effort. Scientific Diving
is the conduct of underwater operations by divers
with the expressed purpose of gathering informa-
tion in any basic or applied scientific discipline.
These include such disciplines as archeology, biol-
ogy, engineering, physical oceanography, geology,
etc. It is diving FOR science, where diving is
merely a research tool. Diving Technology, on the
other hand, is the science OF diving, where the
subject of the research is diving. It is applied re-
search which is focused on increasing man's abil-
ity to function safely underwater. It includes such
research disciplines as human physiology, hyper-
baric medicine, human engineering and life sup-
port equipment design etc. It is important to
recognize the difference between the two.
Artificial reef research diving follows Scien-
tific Diving methodology that is focused on safely
gathering meaningful and objective data about arti-
ficial reefs. It is not Diving Technology research
unless it is focused on improving the divers ability
to gather artificial reef data.

Scientific Diving Safety
Safety is of paramount importance in Scien-
tific Diving research and never should be compro-
mised for data. In Diving Technology research,
however, their may by times when researchers go
beyond the commonly accepted limits of safety to
test a new diving concept or to extend human capa-
bilities underwater.
Recognizing the difference between scien-
tific diving and diving technology has implica-
tions for planning, safety and the establishment of
standards which apply to their respective underwa-
ter research procedures. Diving Technology re-
search, for example, could require testing new life
support equipment, or new gas mixtures at excep-
tional exposures. These procedures may require
the diver to be a test subject to work outside the
limitations of "traditional" safety standards. In
Scientific Diving, however, exceeding traditional
safety standards is rarely acceptable. Scientific
Diving procedures are limited by the current level
of Diving Technology that is available to the div-
ing scientist.
There are also implications for proper dive
planning, organizational procedures and the estab-
lishment of special safety standards for Scientific
Diving, when compared to sport diving. In sport
diving, for example, the objective is recreation. In
a sport dive plan, bottom time is maximized, and
all precautions are made to minimize stress and
work, maximize enjoyment, comfort and safety.
Abrupt changes in the environment, as limited visi-
bility, thermoclines or heavy seas may be suffi-
cient reason to abort a recreational dive, without
The word safety in Scientific Diving takes
on new implications beyond that of sport diver
safety. Since the mission of the scientific diver is
to gather data, safety implies the safe return of the
diver with the data. The job of gathering data
places a burden beyond what the sport diver may
normally be accustomed to when underwater. Not
only is the scientific diver concerned with the
safety of the dive team, but is also concerned
about diver performance. They must concentrate

on the task(s) of gathering quality information, ob-
jectively. Stress and distractions imposed by the
environment, a limited air supply and increased
hazards (compared to a safe laboratory), severely
limits the amount and quality of information
which can be gathered underwater. Procedures for
simplifying data gathering tasks and securing it
must be considered in the scientific dive plan. A
scientific dive plan may require diving under less
than desirable (uncomfortable but safe) condi-
tions if the project's objective is aimed at the
study of the effects of these conditions on marine
life, or the opportunity for getting the data is rare.
Simply stated, ALL dive plans for scientific
diving missions must first maximize diver com-
fort, and minimize stress, work loads, time pres-
sure and the number of tasks each diver must
perform. A comfortable diver will produce high
quality data. If he is distracted by an unnecessary
concern for survival he simply will not give ade-
quate attention to his assigned task, and the qual-
ity of the data will suffer.
Special safety standards for scientific divers
have been developed by the American Academy
of Underwater Sciences (AAUS). They have been
accepted by the federal office of Occupational
Health and Safety Administration (OHSA). See
Appendix A for AAUS Scientific Diving Safety
Standards. Divers engaged in underwater research
activities should adopt the AAUS standards for
their organization to insure compliance with
OSHA's minimum requirements for scientific di-

Scientific Diving Limitations
A diving scientists mission is to collect pre-
cise, accurate (see Chapter 2) and objective infor-
mation underwater. Any impairment to his
cognitive abilities, whether from environmental
stressors, limitations of life support equipment or
safety requirements will limit the precision, accu-
racy and objectivity of the data collected. In some
cases, if the diver is severely stressed, or task
loaded, the data actually may need to be discarded
because of its questionable reliability.

Leadership & Scientific Diving
The conduct of undersea research using
SCUBA as a primary tool has many limitations
which require careful planning and adherence to
the "Buddy System". Adoption of a "buddy sys-
tem" automatically implies that two or more indi-
viduals are involved with the project, therefore a
structure for leadership emerges.
In sport diving, leadership may consist of an
agreement "You follow me !" and the team swims
away. In a scientific dive, the task of collecting in-
formation adds a significant level of complexity to

the leader-follower relationship. For example,
someone must decide: What data will be col-
lected? How it is to be collected? Who is going to
write it down and transcribe it to paper after the
dive? Who is going to carry any instrumentation
that may be required? Who will operate it? Who
is going to monitor dive time and issue warnings as
bottom time runs out or some hazardous marine
life intrudes in the study area? This increase in
complexity demands that divers communicate and
coordinate long before the actual dive and agree to
lead and/or follow where appropriate.
A research team of more than two persons is
likely to be the rule on most research projects.
Some scientific dive programs use a three person
dive team. Two divers engage in the collection of
the data, and the third one serves as the team leader
and safety monitor. This enables the data collec-
tors to concentrate on the research task(s) at hand.
Frequently, a project will require more than one
team. Underwater mapping, usually requires two
or more teams to complete the data gathering task.
As the number of persons involved increases, so
does the need for leadership, communication and
The chief scientist and the divemaster for
any research project must apply their best leader-
ship qualities to prepare their dive teams. Proce-
dures for gathering data underwater are typically
established by the chief scientist. This is the per-
son who has determined what data needs to be col-
lected that will fulfill the research projects
requirements. Most often, the divers do not have
the same level of expertise that the chief scientist
has in the research being conducted. For example,
a fish biologist may want the divers to observe a
certain species of cryptic fish. Divers unfamiliar
with that species, may at first, have difficulty find-
ing the fish, even though it may be quite prevalent
on the reef. The chief scientist must, in this case,
extend his leadership role to include training the di-
vers to an acceptable level of competency needed
to produce the desired quality of data.
In any at-sea operation, all diving activities
which are conducted from a boat, must also have a
surface crew and additional rescue equipment,
such as a chase boat. The need for coordination
and communication with this crew increases the
level of complexity of the operation. The need for
firm leadership and communication becomes even
more apparent.
The obvious conclusion is that the quality
and amount of data collected during an underwater
expedition will directly depend on the amount and
quality of leadership and organization put into it.
Expedition planning, leadership and risk manage-
ment strategies are at the heart of successful reef re-
search projects. Chapter 11 "Underwater Research
Project Management" provides a more comprehen-
sive discussion of this subject.

Scientific Diving Tasks &
Data Collection
Properly trained and well equipped scientific
divers are capable of performing a wide variety of
tasks underwater. Great discretion must be used
however, regarding how much the individual diver
is expected to do in the limited bottom time avail-
able to him. Task loading (assigning the diver too
much to do) will result in poor quality data if the
diver becomes stressed by even the simplest
changes in the environment. Good scientific dive
planning will limit the tasks a diver must perform
and will establish a standard of acceptable perform-
ance. Complicated tasks may require two or even
three dive teams to accomplish, especially if data
gathering instruments must be deployed.
Great care must be given to break each task
down into its simplest steps and individual action
patterns. Then a step by step analysis of each ac-
tion should be considered in the dive plan. For ex-
ample, the task of taking temperature using a glass
thermometer seems simple enough at first. When
broken into its action patterns, it takes on a new
"1) Remove thermometer from protective
case when at the desired depth; 2) Read tempera-
ture after mercury has stabilized; 3) Return ther-
mometer to protective case; 4) Write temperature,
depth, time and date on underwater slate; 5) Pro-
ceed to next data recording station or task. Note:
record any "unusual" temperature changes and the
depths where observed."
These five steps each carry additional impli-
cations for the dive plan. The thermometer needs
a case that won't get lost when the thermometer is
removed from it, so it should be on a lanyard. The
diver will need a watch, and a slate with a sharp
pencil on a lanyard, to record the data. The diver
will need to know where and when to actually take
the temperature, and be aware of any unanticipated
changes. He will also need to know if the tempera-
ture is to be read to the nearest degree, one-half de-
gree or two degrees of accuracy, or is it to be taken
three times at each station and averaged. What ap-
peared to be a simple taking temperature has now
become a formidable task, unless the procedure
has been carefully thought through and STAND-
ARDIZED by agreement before the dive.

Generalized Tasks of Diving Scientists
The following list is organized according to
the level of complexity from the most simple to
the most complex of generalized tasks that scien-
tific divers can perform.
SEARCH simple preliminary examination
of the study area to assess what is there.
OBSERVE looking, listening, or otherwise
perceiving organisms or physical conditions to in-

clude the documenting of the information in some
COLLECT capturing or taking of living or
non-living specimens for later analysis. Includes
photography and sound recording as well as use of
environmental instrumentation.
MEASURE collecting numeric information
regarding spatial relationships, horizontal/vertical
distances, sizes and relative positions between
study subjects. Mapping.
COUNT numerically quantifying the occur-
rence of events, organisms or behavioral activities.
SURVEY careful examination and re-ex-
amination of selected areas for the occurrence of
certain events, or for comparisons.
MONITOR regular collection of certain
data parameters of the same environment over long
time periods to document physical and/or biotic
EXPERIMENT replicated manipulation of
variables to document their effects and determine
causal relationships. In a field setting, all variables
cannot be controlled.Underwater research projects
commonly employ the use of combinationsof these
generalized tasks. For example, a fish population
study may require searching, collecting, and count-
ing to document fish occurrence at a single site.
Comparing sites may require additional surveying
or counting and even monitoring.
The procedures for gathering data underwa-
ter will largely be determined by the original pur-
pose for the research project and the task level
needed to fulfill that purpose. If the purpose of the
project is to describe what invertebrates are cover-
ing a reef structure, then there is no need to survey,
monitor or use experimental procedures. A simple
collection may be enough. If, however, the project
is to determine what and how many invertebrates
are on a reef, then the more elaborate surveying or
counting methods may be needed.

Collecting Data
Data is simply information. It may be a writ-
ten or voice description of something or some ac-
tivity or phenomena observed. It may be a number
or count of something that is recognized according
to a category, such as number of Barracuda or
Sharks observed. Data may consist of measure-
ments of something such as temperatures, depths
or distances between things as for maps. It may be
actual specimens, videos or photographs, properly
labeled and catalogued.

Raw & Reduced Data
Data can exist in two forms, raw data or re-
duced data. Raw data is the actual information as
it was gathered when the observation was being
taken. It might appear on standardized "Data

Sheets", as written or photocopied notes from a
slate, dive log page or as an original photo, slide
or unedited video or movie film. Reduced data is
raw data which has been summarized or edited in
some fashion. Information may be taken from the
raw data sheets and listed in a table or portrayed
on a graph. It may be reduced further through
some mathematical procedure or placed on a map
using symbols. Each time the data is reduced,
some information may be lost or ignored, or worse
yet, erroneously transcribed. Obviously, it is im-
perative that the original raw data sheets are pre-
served, along with the reduced data sheets.

Data Collecting & Preservation
The collection and preservation of the raw
and reduced data from underwater projects re-
quires adherence to a few basic guidelines listed
Create a standardized basic raw data
sheet. This should be simple and easy to
understand (fail safe). Be consistent and
avoid frequent changes to the sheet.
If there is a change (from the standard) in
data collection procedures, it must be
noted on the raw data sheet.
Data must be intelligible to any reader.
Avoid complex coding symbols. If they-
must be used, make sure a code key is on
the data sheet.
Dive log is part of the data.
Put the Complete Date, Location, and
Name Of Observer on Every raw data
sheet, to include year, month and day.
Use pencil or indelible ink -- no felt tip
pens, unless they are waterproof.
Remember, "0" is a real number. It
means you looked for something and did
not find or observe it. If you made no ob-
servation at all, you should enter a dash
(-) or a "Not Applicable" (N/A) symbol
on the data sheet.
Make backup copies of all raw data
sheets and store them in a separate loca-
tion, as soon as possible.
Make sure original or authenticated cop-
ies of raw and reduced data gets into the
archives (see Chapter 12).

Underwater research as it applies to volun-
teers involved with artificial reef research is the
special adaptation of sport diving technology to
scientific diving. It does not require the use of so-

phisticated methods or equipment that may only
be available to the scientific community.
There are a few considerations applicable to
all underwater research projects which are funda-
mental to credible scientific research. This "Intro-
duction" and following chapters deal with those
things considered by the authors to be fundamen-
tal to artificial reef research. Perhaps the best re-
view of these fundamental principles can be
summarized through a list of basic concepts pre-
sented in this handbook.

Artificial Reef Research
Divers Basic Concepts
1) Artificial reef research diving follows
Scientific Diving methodology. Scientific Diving
is the conduct of underwater operations by divers
with the expressed purpose of gathering informa-
tion in any basic or applied scientific discipline. It
is diving FOR science and is limited by diving
technology. The chief scientist is responsible for
the science methods used on a project.
2) Safety is of paramount importance in Sci-
entific Diving research and never should be com-
promised for data. Since the mission of the
scientific diver is to gather data, safety implies the
safe return of the diver WITH the data. The pro-
ject divemaster is responsible for safety.
3) Never should the chief scientist and dive-
master be the same person.
4) ALL dive plans for scientific diving mis-
sions must maximize diver comfort, and minimize
stress, time pressure and the number of tasks each
diver must perform. A comfortable diver will pro-
duce high quality data.
5) The quality and amount of data collected
during an underwater project will directly depend
on the quality of leadership and organization put
into it. Expedition planning, leadership and risk
management strategies are fundamental to success-
ful underwater research. The leadership must es-
tablish a standard of safe and acceptable
6) The procedures for gathering data under-
water will largely be determined by the original
purpose for the research project and the task level
needed to fulfill that purpose. Procedures must be
carefully thought through and standardized by
agreement before the dive.
7) It is imperative that the original or
authenticated copies of raw data sheets, along with
the reduced data sheets are preserved in the ar-
chives. If the data never gets into the archives,
then all prior efforts are a waste of time.

Chapter 2

The Science And Technology

Of Artificial Reefs

by Robert L. Jenkins

Sport divers' lives and activities have been
greatly affected by both science and technol-
ogy. Science has identified the natural laws which
affect what happens to our body underwater and
technology has applied science to design the life
support equipment we use in diving. How do we
define just what science and technology are?
Knowing the distinction is important for the begin-
ning scientific diver. Science, in essence, system-
atically explores the universe, using strict research
procedures, to determine how natural laws func-
tion, and to learn how to use them. Technology is
the application of the findings of science to man's
advantage. It is beyond the scope of our work to
go much beyond these rather simple working defi-
nitions, however, they will be sufficient for our
The purpose of this chapter is to familiarize
you with what science, research, and technology
are, and provide some examples of their implica-
tions to artificial reef research. In its essence, this
chapter will not be telling you how to do research
on an artificial reef; rather, its purpose is to tell
you what science and research are about in a philo-
sophical, and yet practical sense. We will be con-
cerned about the "whys" of science and not so
much with the methods and the means of science
and technology as they are applied to artificial
reefs. Those will be the subjects of the following
chapters. It is the reasoning behind the "whys"
that will be discussed here.

Science: A Definition
Science is a human endeavor that believes
that the real or natural world is described by what
it terms NATURAL LAWS.
The goal and practice of science is to dis-
cover and describe these NATURAL LAWS. In
other words, science is an objective, systematic
and logical discipline to examine, describe, ana-
lyze, and test the real world of natural phenomena.
The resulting descriptions that are discovered
through science become the natural laws we are
used to describe a highly integrated form of knowl-

edge about the real or natural world, with the
knowledge being described by its natural laws.
Now the term natural "laws" can be mislead-
ing, for it does not imply anything that is unalter-
able, concrete or non-changing. A NATURAL
LAW is our best overall description of a natural
(phenomena) which can be understood from the
best accumulated facts we have at that moment in
time. As facts accumulate, our description of the
natural law may change. Put simply, science de-
scribes our world by developing a specialized lan-
guage for doing so. Because we are now openly
refuting one of the more frequently misunderstood
aspects of science (being that it is unalterable or
unchanging), it is important to recognize and high-
light several of the more crucial aspects of just
what science is. Among these are:
L Science is a human invention and en-
deavor. As such, it must deal with all the human
weaknesses that any other human endeavor must
cope with. It attempts to restrict the impact of
these influences through highly disciplined prac-
tices and standardized procedures that are repeat-
able by others.
2. Science is objective and not conjectural.
Facts are only those things which can be detected,
observed, proven, and generally accepted. Sci-
ence is always open to continual scrutiny, evalu-
ation and re-evaluation if deemed necessary.
3. Science is not just the documentation of
events and instances in the natural world. Rather,
science is the language that we use to describe
those instances through the descriptions known as
natural laws.
4. Science approximates the truth, rather
than attempting to define the truth absolutely. Old
interpretations of "truth" can change and be al-
tered as new facts are discovered (this is one of
the more exciting aspects of science as it continu-
ally documents new knowledge).
It is this fourth aspect of science with which
the beginning scientist/technician often has the
most difficulty. We approximate the truth in sci-
ence simply because in forming our descriptions
(natural laws), we can never know or be able to de-
scribe all of the facts and variables which support
any truth. Science is an endeavor that consistently
and constantly seeks truth by the gathering, de-
scribing, and examination of all facts under all

conditions. Consequently, as we become aware of
new facts, our "truths" must be re-examined and
often re-defined, even to the point of being dis-
carded. This process will have particularly impor-
tant meaning in our work on artificial reefs, simply
because there is so much that has yet to be learned.
It is at this point that the terms "hard sci-
ence" and "soft science" come into play. There are
"hard sciences" and there are "soft sciences".
These terms describe the relative strength of the
facts that support the natural laws of each scientific
discipline, and not the degree of difficulty of under-
standing them.
Going from the harder to the softer sciences,
they run from: mathematics physics -chemistry -
biology anthropology-sociology psychology,
Mathematics is the hardest of the sciences be-
cause its facts are precisely defined and built on
strict numerical logic. Psychology is one of the
softest sciences since its facts about human behav-
ior are subject to the scientist himself who cannot
objectively remove himself from the behaviors he
describes. The science of artificial reefs, while
mostly based in the relatively stronger sciences of
physics, chemistry, biology, engineering and geol-
ogy, is presently on the softer side of these disci-
plines. It should be our goal to make the science
of artificial reefs "harder" than it presently is. That
is: based more on strict (mathematical) objective
logic, than on the more subjective personal inter-
pretations of observed events.
This also brings us to yet another very impor-
tant aspect of science: that science is a self-correct-
ing discipline. Science has, as one of its most
fundamental rules, the maxim that it can, and must,
be alterable. We merely approximate the truth in
our natural laws, and therefore, we must always be
ready to discard a natural law or truth when the
facts show it to be no longer valid. This aspect is
the one people and even scientists most often for-
get. Any truth or natural law is only our best de-
scription at any one moment in time. It should
always be open for re-examination and evaluation
as our knowledge increases. Our science of artifi-
cial reefs will be no exception to this tenant. The
option to re-examine and re-evaluate what we
know about artificial reefs based upon an ever in-
creasing knowledge base must always be open.
How then, do we obtain the facts on artificial
reefs so that we may define and describe the truths
or natural laws that govern them? And, how may
we employ this knowledge to build successful arti-

ficial reefs? We will do so through both scientific
research and the development of technology.

Scientific Research &
Scientific documentation methods and tech-
nology applications are two basic disciplines you
will use in your work on artificial reefs.
Scientific research is essentially an endeavor
whose motive is the search for truth. Technology
is the application and re-application of research re-
sults to defined goals which usually benefit some-
one or something. The typical development of an
artificial reef is to benefit fishermen through in-
creased populations of certain select species of
aquatic organisms (more edible fish!). This usual
goal should be based on sound, scientifically
based artificial reef technology developed through
artificial reef scientific rsearh.
An example research project may discover
that benthic reef organisms will grow on weath-
ered concrete, but not (perhaps due to some toxic
problem), grow on raw, or uncured concrete. Tech-
nology then would use this natural law discovery
(a truth, discovered and described through re-
search) so that weathered concrete, and not raw
concrete, is used to construct artificial reefs.
Then, in order to improve the overall efficiency of
our technology, further research would be done to
find out just how weathered the concrete had to be
before it could be used for artificial reefs. Find-
ings of that type of research would further refine
the construction of artificial reefs.
A research finding may show that complete
ships, having decks and holes in the hull, make
better (by attracting more game fish) artificial
reefs than do plain, bare ship hulls. Again, tech-
nology would use this knowledge so that only ship
hulls with holes and decks are used to build artifi-
cial reefs. In this example, further scientific re-
search on reef technology would attempt to
determine the ratio of holes and hole size to the
size of the ship's hull that optimize the desired ef-
During our work with artificial reefs, both
scientific research and technology may be ongoing
at the same time. It is most important to remem-
ber that we must first have sound scientific re-
search from which to build a sound artificial reef
technology. We then further strengthen that tech-
nology through continuous applied research.

Well, just what exactly is sound scientific re-
search, and just how do we do it?

Artificial Reef Research
Scientific research falls into two essential
types: BASIC and APPLIED. Basic research is
commonly known as "pure" research, which
merely seeks knowledge. It has no directed goal
or motive other than pure discovery as its driving
force. It has no focus on a real application. It pur-
sues knowledge for knowledge's sake.
Applied research has a specific goal or aim
which is focused on solving a problem or meeting
some specified goal by searching for new informa-
tion. Technological research is used to REFINE
an already existing knowledge. In its essence, arti-
ficial reef research is applied research, for we are
engaging in it to increase knowledge for specific
goals. However, it will also require some techno-
logical research to refine how we may build a
more efficient reef that produces a desired prod-
To illustrate, a study to determine the num-
bers and seasonal changes of fish around a ship-
wreck is a basic or pure research effort. Doing this
same study to measure the success of a wreck with
respect to attracting a desired species of fish would
be an applied research project. Undertaking this
same study to determine how one should alter the
wreck to increase the numbers of fish on the wreck
would be engaging in technological research. In
fact, all three types of research could be going on
at one and the same time in any given project. The
distinction between basic, applied, and technologi-
cal research is primarily based upon the goals and
objectives for the research in the first place. This
research then serves as the basis for building an ar-
tificial reef technology which will then require fur-
ther technological research to fine tune it to the
specific geographic location where it is found.
It is important for artificial reef researchers
to develop clear and well-defined goals for the re-
search before actually starting it. While it may
seem that a motive for reef research automatically
exists, it is often surprising that so many do not re-
ally know the direction or reason for doing the
work. It is simply just not enough to want to do ar-
tificial reef research. One must know why he or
she is doing it and what specific questions) is/are
to be answered. Such a direction or goal may
range from the general (what is there?) to the spe-
cific (how does concrete compare with rubber as
reef substrate?), and from the simple to the com-
plex. But, it still remains imperative that clear
goals be identified for the research effort.
After the research goal or direction has been
defined, a project outline should identify how that
goal may, or may not, be reached, what data pa-

rameters would be needed, and if it is within the re-
searcher's capability. It should also identify what
the project can not do as well. Once a goal has
been defined, we need a method to attain that goal.
It is at this point that "the scientific method" comes
into play.

The Scientific Method Or
The scientific method is a chain of activities
similar to the Deductive Process Outline found in
Figure 2.1. The researcher takes existing knowl-
edge, makes and documents an observationss, and
forms an idea or explanation called the hypothesis.
He then designs and conducts experiments (tests)
to see if the hypothesis is true or false. The experi-
menter attempts to directly control all but one fac-
tor (variable) in the situation to observe how it
influences the data. Closely examining this vari-
able and its effects determines the truthfulness of
the hypothesis. One should not regard the experi-
ment as being solely found in the laboratory,
where all variables can be carefully controlled. Ex-
periments can also include observations, behavior,
and other similar subjects in a field setting.
Once the experimental phase has been com-
pleted, the facts are accumulated, correlated, and
the new scientific law or discovery is described.
The new or "discovered" law may then be used as
a base to develop a new hypothesis and the process
can then repeat itself. The knowledge accumulates
and more laws are either formulated or discarded.
At some point, when the discovered laws reveal a
broader pattern, a more general explanation or de-
scription may be offered. This broader description
is called the THEORY.

Deductive Method
The foregoing process in science is known as
DEDUCTION. It takes existing knowledge and
builds on it to increase the number of facts and
laws to become a generalized theory see Figure
2.1). Deduction was virtually the only identifiable
scientific method used until the turn of the century,
which partly accounts for its popularity as the sci-
entific method. However, there is another scien-
tific process.

Inductive Method
A researcher may gather knowledge avail-
able to him on what he is studying, and by develop-
ing a thorough understanding of that knowledge,
make a rather large leap directly to a new law or
theory. This method is called INDUCTION. Induc-
tion takes existing knowledge and, without experi-
ments or other fact finding, infers the existence of

a new natural law through a purely mental process.
In essence, it predicts the formulation of a natural
law or theory. The new law or theory is then of-
fered as being tentative until such time that experi-
mental facts can be found to support or prove it
(see Figure 2.1). Often the researcher who makes
such a leap forward in knowledge will outline the
experiments that would be needed to confirm the
inferred law or theory. If such experimental proof
can be found and confirmed, the new law or theory
is accepted; if not, then it is cast aside or a search
undertaken to explain why it was not found to be
true. (See Figure 2.1)
Both induction and deduction are useful sci-
entific methods. It is important to remember, how-
ever, that deduction needs only a small amount of
knowledge from which to begin. Induction, to the
contrary, requires a much larger and more diverse
base of knowledge and a typically longer time for
the researcher to assimilate that knowledge before
it can be fully used. The deductive and inductive
methods are generally combined in the real world
of scientific research. For example, Darwin's The-
ory of Evolution was built from the accumulation
of an immense base of knowledge and facts or de-
duction, and was also developed from a purely
mental process using available theories and obser-
vation, or induction. This was a case where both
the deductive and inductive processes have created
a theory at nearly the same time. The Special and
General Theories of Relativity were built from iso-
lated facts of existing knowledge and Einstein's
own inductive mental processes. The two theories
on relativity were later confirmed by other re-
searchers' experiments suggested by Einstein, and
are good examples of the inductive scientific proc-
ess being confirmed by deduction later on.
How does this apply to artificial reef re-
search? If we use the example of the bare ship
hulls versus those with decks and holes in them,
the deductive process would prove the natural law:
"that decks and holes attract fish" through the accu-

mulation of data reflecting less fish being found in
the bare hull reef and more fish being found in the
reef made of hulls with decks and holes. Deduc-
tion would allow us to develop the natural law de-
scribing this and we would apply this knowledge
to develop a technology that builds reefs from
ships with decks and holes in the hull. The induc-
tive process would start from the knowledge that
fish on natural reefs prefer areas where numerous
nooks and crannies are present. We would then in-
fer that fish would prefer ship hulls with decks
and holes over those that were bare. Experimental
proof of our induction would then come from ob-
servations once both types of hulls were made into
artificial reefs.
Artificial reef research diver technicians
will use the deductive process almost exclusively.
The current small body of knowledge about artifi-
cial reefs prevents highly reliable inductive reason-
ing methods. Particular concern should be on
accumulating field observations that are well docu-
mented. The discovery of the natural laws
through this accumulation of facts (data), requires
standardization in how that data will be accumu-
lated. It is the "what", "where", and "when" of
data accumulation that must be carefully consid-
ered, outlined, and maintained from the start of
any research project, as well as what kind of data
is to be accumulated. What then is data?

Data & Its Successful
Data is information in just about any form.
A datum (singular; data is plural) is really nothing
more than an event in time that is observed and
recorded. Data can be the total number of fish ob-
served on a certain dive, the weather conditions,
the water or bottom conditions, a photo or video
of the event, or any other parameter set by the per-
sons conducting the research. All data recorded

Figure 2.1


Existing Hypothesis r>Data Accumulation-I
Base of (Goal or --Researchl interpretation -)Natural Laws-)Theory
Knowledge Desired Experimentation La
Knowledge Other Natural Laws


Existing Inferred Da
Base of ---- Natural --Research
Knowledge Law, t

Proven Natural Law
Other Natural Law

ita Accumulation
S ) Interpretation
(Proven or / Data Accumulation
Disproven) x Experimentation

The Deduction Process as Compared to the Inductive Process

must include the date it was taken and the name of
the observer to properly account for the informa-
tion and its credibility.
In any research project, the kind of data to
be collected must be defined before it is gathered.
Data accumulation has basically two important as-
pects that must always be considered and planned
for. The fit is that the data is recorded in some
permanent, sharable, understandable and retriev-
able form. Data can be written on paper, stored in
a computer or any other method defined by the
person conducting the research. The actual
method is unimportant as long as it is RE-
UNDERSTANDABLE. Data which is tucked
away inside someone's head or recorded in a code
known only to the observer, does no one any good
and may actually be lost should the person leave,
forget or die.
The second aspect of good data accumula-
tion is that the data is relevant to the research goal.
This is determined during the outlining of the re-
search project where the "how, "what," "why," and
"when" of data collection is decided. The accumu-
lation of data is a lengthy and costly affair. This is
especially true for artificial reef research due to
the costs and time necessary to get to the study
site, the limited time spent there, the time return-
ing, preparing, and all the logistics that are needed
to dive on an artificial reef. Therefore, it is very
important to decide beforehand what data is
needed and what data is to be ignored. The re-
searcher must realize from the beginning that it is
physically impossible to record all possible data
encountered during any study.

Data Gathering Methods
Since everything that can be observed
around an artificial reef can be recorded as data,
great care must be given to decide what and how
data needs to be recorded and by what method.
This depends on the question being asked and the
limitations imposed on the observer by the envi-
ronment or experimental design. Occasionally,
the data, or its gathering method, may need to be
altered during the course of the project as new
knowledge is gained, important information gaps
are found or changes in the situation are encoun-
tered. Normally, this is not recommended for it
makes comparisons difficult. Any changes to the
type or method of data gathering must be carefully
described in the records to account for differences
which may be found in its interpretation later on.
Unrecorded changes in data collecting methods
half way through an experiment or an observation
series could lead to wrong conclusions. This can
even apply to changes in the observers themselves
or the instruments they were using.

Quality of Data
The quality of the data is just as important as
the definition of the data that is being recorded.
Data is typically ordered in a series of facts or ob-
servations that may relate to each other in some
meaningful way. They must be consistently gath-
ered and retain high quality from the beginning to
the end of the observational period or experiment
if the relationship is to have any meaningful sub-
stance. This may appear to be self evident; but it
is surprising how often a research project becomes
worthless simply because good quality data was
not taken consistently. Inexperienced or uncom-
fortable divers are most likely to be inconsistent
data gathers.
Since data is focused by the project's goals,
it is the responsibility of the research project lead-
ers (chief scientists) to define the limits to its preci-
sion and accuracy. For example, data that records
the numbers of non-edible fish present on an artifi-
cial reef may be useless if the study is solely con-
cerned with the numbers of food fish present. If,
on the other hand, a study is undertaken that com-
pares the relative numbers of non-edible fish to the
food fish on the reef, then that data taken before be-
comes both relevant and worthwhile. Just what is,
and is not, good or relevant data must be defined
by the project leaders before the project begins and
must be continually reviewed during the course of
its accumulation.
It must be stressed that high technology is
not necessarily needed to accumulate high quality
data. In fact, underwater, the most reliable data is
often collected by the simplest means. For exam-
ple, exceptionally good data can be collected with
only a pencil, paper, or plastic slate, and a good set
of eyes!

Many types of data can be collected by the
artificial reef research diver. Measurements and
simple observations are probably the two most
used types of data which are often combined.
Some distinction between the two should be made.
Observational data is the accurate descrip-
tion or representation of some detectable phenom-
ena. Measurement is the comparison of some
phenomenon or happening in the real world
against a pre-defined standard or scale. Common
standards of comparison from everyday life are the
inch, the yard, and the Fahrenheit degree. Metric
standards commonly used in science would be the
centimeter, the meter, and the Celsius degree.
Whatever the standard is, it is really nothing more
than the measurement taken and adhered to.
throughout the experiment. Doing so provides
continuity throughout the research project. Often

such measurement standards are already estab-
lished through long use in a particular field of
study, such as measuring the temperature of water
in degrees Celsius. Other times, when no formal
standard exists, some form of comparison, geared
to the project's needs, may have to be developed
by the research leader. Therefore it is important to
standardize the limits needed by the study. Occa-
sionally, it may prove necessary to change the
standard for a certain measurement after entering
into a research project. This may be done only if
there exists the means by which the now older
form of measurement may be converted with rea-
sonable accuracy into the newer standard, such as
changing inches to centimeters, etc. Establishing
the defined standard by which any measurement is
to be undertaken BEFORE the project is started
will also help provide consistent and high quality
data throughout the project

Accuracy & Precision
It is important to define and outline the
standard by which any measurement is to be
taken. It is also important to define the parameters
which will govern the type of measurement under-
taken. The two parameters that govern any meas-
urement are accuracy and precision. In common
usage, these are often mistaken as being one and
the same. In scientific research, they are quite dis-
tinct, yet equally important, aspects of any meas-
Accuracy is the evaluation of how close one
comes to the set standard by which something is
being measured. Stated another way, accuracy is a
measurement of how well one's individual meas-
urements compare to the selected standard. For ex-
ample, if the length of an artificial reef site is
measured in meters, the measurement would be ac-
curate to a one-meter standard if the reef site is
measured to the nearest meter. If, on the other
hand, one is unable to measure to the nearest me-
ter, but may only measure to the nearest 10 meters,
then we would have less accuracy, based upon the
one-meter standard.
Accuracy is the means by which one gauges
how closely one comes to the measuring standard
for any single measurement. The relative degree
of accuracy (the standard), then must be deter-
mined before the measurement is taken. It will do
an artificial reef research project, or for that matter
any research project, absolutely no good to under-
take a measurement and then later find it is not ac-
curate enough for the needs of the project. The
degree of accuracy needed must be gauged by the
goals of the project. If, for example, one wishes to
measure the temperature of the water around an ar-
tificial reef site, one must determine, just how ac-
curate one wishes the temperature measurement to

be. One may decide his measurements need only
be accurate to the nearest one degree Celsius. Us-
ing an instrument that measures to the nearest 1/5
of a degree, or one that measures to the nearest
five degrees, will result in data that is either too
costly to get or too inaccurate for the project
needs. Accuracy is determined by the needs of
the project; the intended use of the measurement
and not the relative sophistication of the available
instrumentation. Thus, a careful consideration of
the accuracy needed in any measurement will help
determine how the measurement is to be taken
and the device by which it is to be done.
Precision is an evaluation of how often any
particular measurement or series of measurements
is accurate. Simply put, accuracy tells how close
it is possible for us to get to the reality we want to
measure, and precision tells how often we can get
there using methodology and instrumentation. If
one has a measurement that is accurate to the
needs of the project, precision will allow the deter-
mination of how often such a measurement meets
those needs. In any measurement it is very impor-
tant to ask, "How often is this accurate measure-
ment accurate?" The answer to this question will
give the relative precision of that measurement.
By now it should be readily apparent that a meas-
urement may be a mixture of both accuracy and
precision, as well as being either. Figure 2.2 illus-
trates the interrelationship of accuracy and preci-
In this figure, four darts have been thrown
at three similar targets. In target A, the darts have

Figure 2.2




Target A--accurate but not precise
Target B--precise but not accurate
Target C--accurate and precise

landed in a way that is accurate but is not precise.
They have hit the target but are scattered over the
entire surface of the target. In target B, the thrown
darts are now precise, but they are not accurate;
they are close to one another, but are not in the in-
tended target itself. In target C, the thrown darts
are both accurate and precise. They are grouped
both in the target and in proximity to each other
(See Table 2.1).

Table 2.1

A 15.5 13.2 18.5




set before the measurement is undertaken. Our
choice of how and by what instrument a measure-
ment is taken will affect how accurate and precise
that measurement is.
2) The precision of any measurement can be
simplified simply by narrowing the accuracy
range of that measurement. By closing the gap be-
tween both ends of the measurement range, one
can force oneself into highly precise measure-
ments. For example, you may decide your reef
maps need to be accurate to within 10 meters for
every 100 meters actually measured. By changing
the acceptable accuracy range to five meters for
every 100 meters measured, you have increased
the precision of the resulting maps. Of course, the
price of this improvement is an increase in time
and instrumentation needed to achieve this level of

3) Accuracy of a measuring device, such as
depth gauge using an analog needle, requires an es-
C 25.3 12.8 19.0 timate be made between a series of similar meas-
urements. A single measurement can be accurate
D 18.2 13.1 18.8 but it can never be precise. A more precise
method would be to measure the depth from the
same gauge five times, and average the readings.
Date Taken: 1/24/84 2/16/84 5/30/84 Of course, to verify the accuracy of the instrument
it should be calibrated against a known measure-

The results shown in Table 2.1 are measure-
ments of the water temperature that were made by
four different divers on the same artificial reef at
the same time of day on three successive days. By
reading the available literature on sea temperatures
for this area, an anticipated yearly range of 15 to
25 degrees Celsius for this area of the ocean was
found. The first set of measurements, Column A,
shows accurate results that are not precise. These
measurements cover almost the entire expected
range and show little comparative value to each
other (i.e., is the temperature 15.5 or 253 de-
grees?) In the second set of measurements, Col-
umn B, all four measurements are precise, but they
do not appear to be accurate, as they are out of the
anticipated range. The reasons for both of these
problems can be varied: inaccurate thermometer;
poor choice of expected range, or the temperatures
may indeed be this, and the day on which they
were taken was an anomaly. Whatever the reason,
the results indicate that something is not right and
deserves to be checked out. Column C, the third
set of measurements, gives both accurate and pre-
cise results. They are at once accurate, for they
are in our expected range, and are precise since
they are close to one another.
It is interesting to note several features of
measurement and how they are affected by accu-
racy and precision.
1) Both accuracy and precision are largely
determined by the standard of measurement that is

4) Measurements that are accurate and pre-
cise do not have to correspond exactly to one an-
other. They merely have to be relatively
comparable, as expressed in Column C of Table 1.
This is where the science of statistics comes into
Statistics and its methods have been devel-
oped to measure measurements in relation to each
other and thus determine their meaning relative to
each other. The relative importance of both accu-
racy and precision is therefore set in the beginning
of the project. Surprisingly enough, observational
data also fits these descriptions of accuracy and
precision for measurements.

Like any other data method, observation is a
way in which to gather perceived and recorded
phenomenon or events in time. It is normally con-
ducted with any of the five senses: seeing, tasting,
hearing, feeling, and smelling. Any scientific in-
strument can be used as an extension of any one of
these senses. Essentially, an observer must be ob-
jective and not subjective in his/her observations.
Objective in this sense means that the observer re-
cords accurately what is observed and does not im-
part any of their own ideas, desires, or
interpretations into the observation. For example,
one could document from a single observation,
that a certain species of grouper is present on an ar-

tificial reef. However, one could not determine if
the grouper somehow affected other fish on the
reef until a series of observations were made to
document the Grouper's effect. This interpreta-
tion could not have been made based solely on the
first and only observation.
Observations are, therefore, objective record-
ings of sensed phenomena from the real world.
This is not to say, however, that observations can
not be intuitively based. They can certainly be in-
tuitive, particularly when one is engaged in the in-
ductive process of scientific investigation. To
pursue the example above, one may observe the
grouper on the reef and intuitively sense, based
upon previous experience with the reef, that it is
having a negative impact on the reef. One could
then formulate and conduct an objective study to
determine if this is indeed true.
Observations not only need to be accurate,
they should use the most descriptive terms possi-
ble. They need to be precise in that they should be
repeatable under the same circumstances. The
point at which observations can trick one is that
they are made by the person conducting the re-
search. It is well known that we often observe
things as reflections of our own inherent experi-
ence, prejudices, and desires. We tend to change
(bias) our descriptions based on prior experiences.
This is why we must maintain every possible ef-
fort to be totally objective when making observa-
tions. As artificial reef research divers, we must
always be aware of our biases and how they may
affect the work being done. For example, if a
diver does not believe that non-edible fish have
any impact on an artificial reef, he could choose to
ignore them, and thus, never be able to measure
the real impact that they may have on the total reef
system. True objectivity in science is not arbitrar-
ily "turning-off" of one's self. Rather, it is the
knowing of one's own inherent biases and how
they may affect the data.

Time & Data
The final aspect to be considered in data ac-
cumulation is the element of time. It takes, as
mentioned earlier, a great deal of time (and thus
money) to collect and record data. This is of great
importance in artificial reef research, since so
much time is consumed in just getting to and from
the research site. Time is, therefore, one of the
most precious commodities in artificial reef re-
search. This is where all the careful planning and
goal outlining mentioned earlier will have its great-
est impact. Spending time planning the research
while bouncing on the boat over the research site
is just plain wasted. Planning is best done on
shore before the dive. This includes planning for
safety and maximizing research time at the study

Science is largely a repetitive endeavor, and
it takes a great deal of time and many observations
to build up the data base to make the research
meaningful in the first place. It is important to real-
ize that good reef research will not result from a
single dive on any artificial reef. It will be the re-
petitive, sometimes seemingly monotonous work
built up over extended periods of time, even over
many years that will yield the most worthwhile re-
sults. Once again, caution must be used not to
change data collecting methods because of their
monotony. Time must always be taken into consid-
eration when planning and outlining the final re-
search project. Furthermore, time also has impact
on the final step in conducting the research; the in-
terpretation of all the data and experimentation that
has been going on up until now. One must con-
stantly take the time (between data collections) to
evaluate what one has done in order to direct one's
future work on artificial reefs.

Interpretation &
Science, as outlined in the foregoing pages,
is the overall method by which one discovers the
natural laws which are the language used to de-
scribe the real world. It is the means by which, the
artificial reef research diver will discover the
world of the artificial reef. Observation, experi-
mentation, and research are the methods of finding
and describing the facts upon which this language
will be based. Since we are conducting science, it
now becomes necessary for us to explain this work
so that others may know and make use of it. The
step in which one formulates his explanation of the
meaning of his work is known as INTERPRETA-
TION. Interpretation is the analysis of the re-
search findings from which the natural law and
ultimately the theories, is developed into some
communicable form. The interpretation can also
be called the conclusion, or summary, of the work
which conveys the discovered knowledge. Of all
the steps involved in research and the scientific
process, this will be the most difficult, the trickiest,
and the one that requires the most experience to do
properly. This is where the non-scientist must seek
the advice of professionally trained scientists.
The principle reason that the interpretation
or conclusion process is so difficult is that it is ex-
tremely easy to reach quick and often wrong con-
clusions before enough facts have been
accumulated. As artificial reef research divers, our
hardest task will be to keep from jumping ahead to
the end of the research process and prematurely
formulating an interpretation about the research re-
sults before the project is complete. In doing this
work it will always be tempting to take some sin-
gle observation or other small aspect of this work

and build it into a rather grand fact. This is under-
standable, for the hardest thing any researcher or
scientist must learn is that he or she must be pa-
tient and wait for the build-up and accumulation of
data that will either prove or disprove any given
hypothesis. The scientific literature, and indeed
the popular literature through the media, is already
scattered with the remains of research interpreta-
tions which were based on either too little data or
on the premature interpretations of that data. For
the artificial reef research diver, one of the most ef-
fective ways to avoid any premature interpretation
is to have a full understanding of what his role and
limitations are and how that role as a research
diver (technician) is carried out. He should leave
the interpretation in the hands of the professionally
trained researcher.

Role of the Research Diver
In the past, research was usually carried out
through the efforts of single, professionally trained
individuals who did the observations and measure-
ments, performed the experiments, accumulated
the data and facts, and then did the interpretative
work to formulate the laws and theories. During
the past hundred years or so this has changed to
more of a team approach. It is through this team
approach that you will most likely be working as
an artificial reef research diver. Because of the di-
verse nature of the disciplines involved in artificial
reef work (i.e. population dynamics, invertebrate
zoology, fisheries science, marine engineering,
etc.), no single diver or set of diving partners can
do all the work necessary to conduct research on
artificial reefs. Therefore, the role of the artificial
reef research diver is principally analogous to that
of the laboratory technician in a modem day re-
search laboratory. These technical people are re-
sponsible, by virtue of their training, to do the
observations and data gathering pertinent to the re-
search project and compile the data in a manner
relevant to that project. It is the professional scien-
tist who should interpret the data collected by the
artificial reef research divers.
The modem research team usually has a pri-
mary researcher, called the Principle Investigator,
who leads the research effort to meet the goals of
the research project.This primary researcher may
be a scientist or even a small team of scientists
leading the research. It will usually be this princi-
ple investigator who will set the project's research
goals, standards, evaluate the data, do the final in-
terpretation and analysis of the data, and finally if
applicable, publish the results. You, as the techni-
cal person, who collects the data, will play an inte-
gral and pivotal role in the research simply

because so much depends on your diving and data
gathering skills. The entire artificial reef research
process depends on the accumulation of relevant,
accurate, and precise data for its success. That is
the reef research diver's function. A hypothesis
will be supported or rejected on the basis of the
data taken. The natural laws or theories that
emerge will only be as good as the data that they
are derived from. In no small sense, the success of
any artificial reef research project will depend al-
most entirely upon the quality of its data; hence,
the divers who are responsible for obtaining it.

Science is a series of steps used to discover
natural laws. Scientific knowledge is built from
data collected over time and the findings from past
research and studies. In building our science of ar-
tificial reefs, we will be exploring new territory,
discovering new facts, and expanding our knowl-
edge of the real world. We can do so, however,
only because we are basing our work in the begin-
ning on the knowledge gained by those who went
before us.
The advent of the volunteer, artificial reef re-
search diver into the world of science is an excit-
ing one. It is perhaps one of the first real
opportunities in which a non-scientist can not only
experience the fun and joy of doing science, but
can also have direct and meaningful input into the
world of scientific research without having to have
the extensive training typical to most scientific dis-

Bolding, Kenneth E. 1980. Science, Our
Common Heritage. SCIENCE, 207:4433, p 831-
Bronowski, J. 1978. Magic, Science, and
Civilization. Columbia University Press, New
Bronowski, Jacob. 1978. The Common
Sense of Science. Harvard University Press, Cam-
bridge, Massachusetts.
Goldstein, M. and F. Goldstein. 1978. How
We Know. Plenum Publishing, New York.
Herrick, C. Judson. 1956. The Evolution of
Human Nature. University of Texas Press, Austin,
Ziman, John. 1976. The Force of Knowl-
edge. Cambridge University Press,Cambridge,

Chapter 3

Some Basic Considerations

Of Underwater Scientific Photography

Joseph G. Halusky

Photography is a powerful tool for a diver/re-
searcher. It enables the diver to return to the
surface with a visual record of his subject as it was
observed for moment in time. The camera-
equipped diver can gather a large amount of data
with a few snaps of the shutter, reducing the num-
ber of tasks he might need to get the same informa-
tion manually. With proper accessory equipment
and/or technique, the camera eye can capture phe-
nomena invisible to the human eye by using infra-
red film or by stopping rapid motion.
Many "scientific" photos share characteristics
common with "artistically" composed photo-
graphs, however, there are subtle differences.
They vary in the value of the story they tell, in
their eye appeal and in their composition. The "ar-
tistic" photos value is in its aesthetic eye appeal or
unusual quality while scientific or documentary
photos derive their value from the amount, quality,
credibility and accuracy of the data (information)
which they contain. Principally, the data photo is
used to reconstruct and document some event and
to capture qualitative and/or quantitative informa-
tion about the subject. Often a series of data pho-
tos is taken to record the progress of a project or
experiment or to show a progression of change
over time, such as "before" and "after" photos. Of
course, a good scientific photo can also have a
high artistic value and vice-versa.

Basic Components of a
Documentary Photo
Since the primary intent for a scientific photo
is to record data, each photo should have certain
key elements with it to make it acceptable as a sci-
entific document. The key elements should ap-
pear M or in each photo. Information is placed on
the photo after the film is processed and the print
made. Information is placed in the photo at the

time the picture is taken, and thus becomes part of
the photograph itself.

Key Elements of a Scientific
* 1. Date and lime photo was made.*
* 2. Location where photo was taken (includes de-
pth and precise geographic location).*
* 3. Name of photographer.*
* 4. Sale of photo. (The size of the subject
should relate to some known object, such as a
ruler, pencil or coin.)
* 5. Orientation of photo. (The subject of the
photo should be related to some known bench-
mark such as distance and direction from a
known point or experimental variable.)
* 6. Exposure information. (Film speed, shutter
speed, f-stop and any special lighting and fil-
* 7. Project Identification Name or code num-

* Indicates information which must accompany
each photograph.

Basic Methods for
Underwater Scientific
Camera technique used by scientific photogra-
phers is generally no different from techniques
used by amateur or professional photographers.
All "tricks of the trade," therefore, can be applied
and will not be discussed herein. Many suitable
texts already exist on camera techniques and the
reader can refer to them for further information.
The scientific photographer is faced with
deciding between two photographic approaches to

approach. It is the nature of the question being
studied which determines the method used.

Single-Event Photo Method
* Definition: In this method, the data needed is
contained in a single photograph. It is a photo
of a subject or phenomenon as it occurs. eg.,
photo of a fish, or a fish behavior; pictures of
scenes, activities, etc.
* Method: Single photo using still camera.
* Application: Used to:
document "it happened";
illustrate the "who, what, where, when and
how" of some event;
record patterns (as fish markings, distribu-
tion on reefs);
record angular relationships, colors, interac-
tions between individuals (as hermit crabs
and their shells or cleaning behavior of fish
at a cleaning station);
show relationships with their environment;
document experimental procedure, meth-
ods and progress.
can easily be made available for publica-
cannot document relationships over great
is inaccurate for comparing individuals not
in the same photo or for survey information;
cannot show elements of change over time
(however, single-event photos can be ana-
lyzed when made part of a series);
as a single photo, it cannot be used for as-
sembling quantitative data or making popu-
lation estimates.

Systematic Photo Series
* Definition: In this method, the data is obtained
by comparing a series of photos which were
taken so that each photo is related to others in
space and/or time. Example: series of photos
taken to make a strip map or a movie film. A
movie is a group of still photos taken in time se-
* Method:
a) Series in relation to a benchmark -- Pho-
tos taken in order, at regular intervals from
a known benchmark. (Bottom survey of in-
vertebrates along a transect line from a per-
manent benchmark.)

b) Series in relation to time Photos taken
at regular intervals of time of the same sub-
ject to show change. Movie or time-lapse.
(Growth of the same coral colony.)
c) Series in some pattern Photos taken
along a randomly placed transect using a
predetermined pattern, not necessarily re-
lated to a benchmark or regular time inter-
val. (Used in population surveys of a
variety of reefs.)

Note: Generally it is best to include photo iden-
tification information (see Key Elements) in the
photograph series rather than on the photo af-
ter processing.
SApplication: Series of photos can be used to:
survey an environment to obtain numerical
data, such as a strip census or to measure
distribution of organisms in relation to iden-
tified parameters or benchmarks;
make maps;
measure relationships between individuals
such as in fish schools (Slow motion mov-
measure animal behavior action patterns;
measure growth rates or otherwise unper-
ceivable changes as with time lapse photog-
raphy of slow moving organisms on reefs.
SDisadvantages: The series of photos:
takes more preparation and more space than
the single event photo, and may require spe-
cial viewing equipment. (Loss of one
photo could destroy value of the series);
not as useful for organism identification
since the photo series is not oriented to just
one subject, but instead oriented in space
and time. (A fish may not stay within the
limits of your survey area when the photo is
being taken);
may be costly, depending on the measure-
ment and orientation equipment needed to
get the series;
usually requires more than two divers and
more coordination and time to obtain the se-
may be difficult to analyze since the data
exists in more than one photograph.

Storage and Retrieval of Scientific
Taking the photo or photo series is only a
small portion of the work surrounding scientific

photography. A photograph is like any other
"specimen" or "data sheet" that should be safe-
guarded and filed for later use. Project photogra-
phers should consult with the archivist to insure
their work is entered into the archives properly.
Careful consideration should be given to purchas-
ing cabinets and film holding devices since pho-
tos, video tapes, movie film and negatives may
have special handling and storage requirements.
Like any specimen, each photo and negative
should be labeled with the minimum information
on it to include: date photo taken; location and
photographers name.
Organizing the photos for later retrieval can
be the greatest challenge. This requires a catalog-
ing system and some procedure for loaning out the
photos for those needing to use them. Library
techniques for assigning topic headings for various
photos would be useful for organizing the photo ar-
chives. One excellent publication titled "Organiz-
ing Your Photographs" by Robl (1986) offers
many good suggestions for filing the photos and
even computerizing information about them for
quick retrieval. Photos should be cross indexed
with the original data and dive log sheets stored in
the reef data archives. One good way of achieving
this is to store a photo log sheet in the specific reef
site files, or project file.

The diver/scientist/photographer has at his
disposal a powerful, time-saving tool for docu-
menting underwater phenomena. He must, early
in his project design, select the appropriate cam-
era technique and method (single event or system-
atic photo series) by which to gather his data.
When considering photography as a tool for data
gathering, careful consideration must be given to:
limitations of the equipment, lighting and film; en-
vironmental parameters which affect photography;

length and cost of the study; the nature of the ques-
tion being asked; and the need for accurate photo
record documentation.

Suggested References
Andrewartha, H.G. (1961). Introduction to
the Study of Animal Populations, The University
of Chicago Press. 281 pp.
Bass, George (1966). Archeology Underwa-
ter, Penguin Books.183 pp.
Church, Jim and Church, Cathy (1972). Be-
ginning Underwater Photography, 2nd Ed.,
Pischel Inc., Pasco, WA. 56 pp.
Church, Jim & Church, Cathy. (1986). The
Nikonos Handbook, Herff Jones Yearbooks, PO
Box 3288, Logan, UT 84321
Church, Ron (1971). Beginner's Guide to
Photography Underwater, Ron Church Publica-
tions, La Jolla, CA. 64 pp.
Frey, H. and P. Tzimoulis (1963). Camera
Below, Association Press, New York. 224 pp.
Hedgecoe, John (1979). The Photogra-
pher's Handbook, A.A. Knopf, New York. 352 pp.
Kinne, Russ (1962). The Complete Book of
Nature Photography, A.S. Barnes & Co. Inc., New
York 191 pp.
Kodak, Eastman (1972). Bibliography on
Underwater Photography and Photogrammetry. P-
124, E. Kodak Co. 30 pp.
Meyers, LS. and N.E. Grossen (1974). Be-
havioral Research: Theory, Procedure, and De-
sign, W.H. Freeman & Co., San Francisco, CA.
353 pp.
Robl, Ernest H.(1986). Organizing Your
Photographs. Amphoto or Watson- Guptill Publi-
cations, 1515 Broadway, New York, NY. 10036.
191 pp.


I %

Chapter 4

Oceanographic Data Collection

And Reef Mapping

Christopher P. Jones

The collection of oceanographic data by divers
is an important part of any artificial reef pro-
gram. The data are needed for: site selection, as-
sessment of physical changes to the reef over time
and assessment of biological productivity. While
some physical site selection data can usually be
gathered during a single dive, assessments of bio-
logical productivity and reef stability requires
many dives over an extended period of time.
The data are not the only consideration. Just
as important are such things as measurement tech-
niques, documentation of time and location of
measurements, storage and retrieval of data (See
Chapter 12: "Archives"). Unless the measurement
techniques are standardized, and unless the time
and location of the measurements are known, the
data will be of no value. Standardized techniques
for data gathering can help the diver make the
most efficient use of bottom time and get.maxi-
mum use out of the data. Reef maps can provide
one of the best ways to handle data and to docu-
ment changes to the reef structure over time. The
type of map to be used (and the oceanographic
data to be measured) will depend upon the goal of
the data collection program.
The important thing to remember is that the
reason for collecting data and noting artificial reef
changes is to increase our understanding of reef be-
havior under certain oceanographic conditions and
to improve siting and construction techniques. Un-
fortunately our present understanding of hydrody-
namic forces on reef elements and submarine soil
mechanics does not allow for accurate prediction
of reef stability. Furthermore, expensive data col-
lection programs using sophisticated equipment
are required to make even approximate predic-
tions. Since most artificial reef projects have mini-
mal funding, data collection programs must be
simplified; siting and construction decisions must
be based on limited information and carefully re-
searched principles. Divers will play an important
role in collecting data and monitoring reefs so that
these principles can be refined and improved.
Oceanographic data as used in this chapter will in-
clude such parameters as: current direction and
magnitude; direction, height and period of surface
waves; bottom sediment characteristics; water tem-

perature, salinity, turbidity and dissolved oxygen;
and water depth.
There are only a few references dealing specifi-
cally with the stability of artificial reefs (Kim, et
al., 1981; Aska, 1981). However, there are numer-
ous references dealing with submarine soil mechan-
ics and hydrodynamic forces related to pipelines
and offshore construction; much of the information
will be applicable to reefs (Grace, 1978; Chang
and Ford, 1978; American Society of Civil Engi-
neers, 1974; American Society for Testing and Ma-
terials, 1972; Schenck, 1975; Herbich, 1981).The
NOAA Diving Manual (Miller, 1979) is also a
good general reference for reef divers.

Reef Stability
Stability of an artificial reef can be defined
as the ability of the reef to resist settlement dis-
placement and deterioration. The long-term stabil-
ity depends upon many things: reef materialss,
water depth, waves and currents, bottom sedi-
ments, etc. A reef monitoring program should be
designed to document any changes in reef structure
and orientation, as well as material deterioration.
The program should gather sufficient oceano-
graphic data to correlate changes in the reef with
these data. The reason for looking at reef stability
is to note changes in the reef elevation, structure or
materials that affect the biological productivity of
the artificial reef. These changes can occur gradu-
ally over a long period of time or they can occur
suddenly, particularly during severe storms. For
these reasons, monitoring programs should include
periodic dives at a reef site, and should allow for
dives after storms as soon as conditions safely per-
Important changes can be divided into five
categories: settlement. siltation. collapse, disinte-
gration and scattering. The first four all result in a
loss of reef, while the fifth results in a dispersal of
reef materials over a wide area.

Settlement and Siltation
Settlement occurs when the bearing capacity
of the bottom sediment is not sufficient to support
the reef elements or when the sediment liquifies
during storm conditions -- the reef sinks into the
bottom. Siltation occurs when waves and currents

carry sediments into the reef area, where for one
reason or another they settle out, slowly burying
the reef elements.
Bottom characteristics should be investi-
gated carefully as part of any artificial reef site se-
lection process. This is to ensure that settlement
will not occur, or if it does, that the expected settle-
ment will not be a problem. Settlement of a reef
can be monitored by driving one or more steel rods
or pipes into the bottom at the reef site and measur-
ing the elevation of the reef elements with respect
to the tops of the rods. Siltation can be monitored
by measuring the distance from the tops of the
rods to the sediment. The rods can also be used as
horizontal and vertical control points for mapping

Collapse and Scattering
Collapse is used to describe the movement
of reef elements from their original configuration
to one of a lower profile. Individual elements re-
main intact during this process.
Scattering occurs when reef elements spread
out over the bottom (low density materials such as
tires are susceptible).
Measurements of collapse and scattering will
be more involved, due largely to the nature of reef
materials subject to these changes the elements
are usually small and placed in large quantities
(tires, appliances, culvert, rubble, etc.). In order to
measure collapse and scatter accurately, the diver
must have a complete and accurate post-construc-
tion map showing the locations and positions of
the reef elements. He must then return to the site
later to construct another map. Mapping can be ac-
complished with tape and compass, or with more
sophisticated (and expensive) equipment. Ray-
mond (1981) describes such a project, where side-
scan sonar and underwater photographs were used
to map a tire reef.
Ideally, differences between the maps should
be due only to collapse or scatter, but this may not
be the case. Poor conditions, limited visibility and
errors in measurement will all be reflected in the
differences between the maps. Divers should rec-
ognize that bottom time limitations and other con-
straints may not allow them to precisely locate
individual reef elements, and that maps will there-
fore contain some errors. This is acceptable, pro-
vided that divers accurately map the boundaries of
the reef, and the shape and height of its major fea-
tures. These data will allow gross changes in reef
structure to be documented. Remember, it will not
be worth the effort to map large numbers of indi-
vidual elements within a reef site, except during
highly unusual circumstances.

Disintegration refers to the deterioration of
reef materials. This occurs most commonly with
automobiles, appliances and other elements made
of thin sheet metal that corrode rapidly.
Disintegration may result in localized or to-
tal failure of a reef; it may occur slowly or rapidly,
depending on the type of material used to con-
struct the reef and the forces acting on it. Docu-
menting deterioration will require that
photographs and/or notes describing condition at
the time of placement be compared with similar re-
cords from a later date.
In many cases, deterioration will be obvious
(e.g., a broken hull or collapsed deck on a barge or
boat). Divers should concentrate on documenting
significant changes rather than the minor or not so
obvious ones. They should look for such things
as: changes in height, break up of large pieces into
smaller ones, enlargement of major cracks and
holes, corrosion and disappearance of metal sheets
or wood planks, etc. It is helpful to mark a piece
or part of a reef so that divers can return to the
same place to follow movement of tagged materi-
als to document change.

Oceanographic Data
Collecting oceanographic data is an impor-
tant part of any site selection or reef monitoring
program. Divers must collect the data systemati-
cally and record it carefully. Following the proce-
dures outlined in this chapter will help divers to
gather the most important data. Using a stand-
ardized data recording sheet (see Appendix B for
examples), will ensure that the necessary oceano-
graphic data area collected, and that other impor-
tant information is also recorded. This additional
information should include: surface position (lati-
tude and longitude, or LORAN), date and time (be
sure to note whether times are daylight savings or
standard), a brief description of meteorological
conditions (air temperature, wind speed and direc-
tion, cloud conditions, etc.) and the name of the
person making these observations.
Even though divers will not be able to col-
lect data during storms (when conditions will have
the greatest impact on reef stability), they will be
able to collect data during "normal" conditions or
shortly after such events, which are probably more
important biologically. The data can be analyzed
in conjunction with fish counts and other biologi-
cal observations to improve our understanding of
artificial reefs. Some analysis has been done (Bor-

tone and Van Orman, 1985a; 1985b) but more
data needs to be collected.

Currents are one of the most important fac-
tors affecting reef stability. It is the flow of water
past an artificial reef that creates hydrodynamic
forces capable of shifting reef elements, scouring
or depositing sediments, reducing the bearing ca-
pacity of the bottom and supporting the commu-
nity of filter feeders.
Unfortunately, the strongest currents (and
the greatest movement of reef elements) usually
occur during severe storms when divers cannot
make observations. If a self-recording current me-
ter can be installed at the reef site, measurements
of storm currents can be obtained and correlated
with observed displacements of reef elements.
Even if a self-recording current meter cannot be in-
stalled, a post-storm dive on a reef as soon as con-
ditions safely permit will yield valuable
Currents at a particular location can be the
result of several things: waves, tides, winds or
large-scale current systems (eg. the Gulf Stream).
Currents can move in one direction or they can be
oscillators (divers often refer to oscillator bottom
currents as "surge" or "wave surge"); they can
change speed or direction rapidly or they can be
slowly varying; they can be nearly uniform
throughout the water column or they can change
from surface to bottom. For these reasons, current
measurement programs should be thought out care-
fully. Over time it will be possible to establish a
current data base at a reef site, just as meteorolo-
gists have established climatological norms and
extremes for sites on land.
This data base should include the following
information: surface position; date and time of
measurement; surface current speed and direction
(note that current direction is specified as the direc-
tion in which the water is moving toward this is
opposite to the convention used for winds and
waves, which are specified according to the direc-
tion from which they come); bottom current
speed, direction and distance from the bottom to
the point of measurement (since the velocity de-
creases as you get close to the bottom). Be sure
that bottom current measurements are made "up-
stream" of any reef elements or obstructions (in-
cluding other divers) that might distort the flow
field. Note any rocking or movement of reef ele-
ments when the measurements are made.
Current measurement techniques need not
be complicated. In fact, the simplest are some-
times the best. At the surface, measure the time it
takes floating debris or foam to pass an anchored
vessel. Dividing the vessel length by the measured
time yields the current speed; a compass provides

direction. Bottom currents can be measured in a
similar fashion. Observe the time it takes fine sedi-
ment or other particles suspended in the water to
travel a measured distance along the bottom. Dye
pellets can be carried to the bottom in waterproof
packages by divers and then opened; the dye will
color the water and allow for speed and direction
measurements to be made. These simple tech-
niques have some advantages over the use of hand-
held or other types of current meters. First, there is
much less cost involved, and second, low veloci-
ties that are below the threshold for current meter
operation can still be measured.
The most practical way for reef divers to im-
prove our understanding of reef stability is by mak-
ing systematic current measurements and
observations of reef movement. Since it is difficult
to predict accurately the effects of currents on arti-
ficial reef elements, simple correlations between
currents and movement must be developed from
the data collected. Nevertheless, it is useful to re-
view the forces that will act on a reef element so
that divers will have a basic understanding of
them. (See Figure 4.1, which illustrates the vari-
ous forces acting on a single reef element in the
presence of a current with velocity V.)

Figure 4.1


The forces indicated in the figure are described
W = the weight of the reef element in air
FB = the buoyant force acting upward on the ele-
ment (note that the differences between the weight
and buoyant force Is the submerged wright)
FV & FH = the soil forces acting on the element
that tends to resists settlement and lateral move-
ment, respectively
FD = the drag force acting in the direction of water
FL = the lift force acting on the element in the verti-
cal direction due to the flow around an asymmetri-
cal element of to the alteration of the flow pattern
around the element due to the presence of the bot-
FI = an inertia force present only in accelerating
(wave-induced) currents

Note that the hydrodynamic forces (FD, FL,
Fi) depend upon the speed of the current and the
area or volume of the reef element; if the speed in-
creases then these forces will increase also. Like-
wise, if the size of the element subjected to the
current increases then the forces will increase.
The magnitudes of the hydrodynamic forces
also depend upon certain empirically determined
coefficients. For example, the drag force can be de-
scribed by the following equation:
FD = pCDA V2
Where p is the density of the water, A is the
projected area normal to the current and CD is the
drag coefficient. In general, CD will vary with the
shape of the element, the roughness of the element
and the speed of the current (i.e., CD is not con-
stant, but a function of V).
It is difficult without detailed field and labo-
ratory studies to calculate the drag force and other
hydrodynamic forces on a reef element, particu-
larly if it is of an odd shape or if it is surrounded
by other elements which distort the flow field.

Surface Waves
Most waves are caused by wind. As the
wind blows over the water surface energy is trans-
mitted to the water and waves are formed. Wave
characteristics depend on the wind speed, the dis-
tance over which it blows (the fetch) and the length
of time that it blows. The sea surface at a particu-
lar location may be calm or very irregular, depend-
ing upon local winds and the presence of waves
generated at far away locations; the surface may be
composed of waves travelling in a single direction
or of waves travelling in several directions.
Waves are classified according to the ratio of
their length to the water depth as deep water
waves, intermediate waves or shallow water
waves. Deep water waves are those whose length
is less than twice the water depth; shallow water
waves are those whose length is one-half the water
depth. Intermediate waves lie in between. This dis-
tinction is important since waves not only affect
the sea surface, but also the water column below:
waves generate oscillating currents that extend
down into the water (see Figure 4.2). The water

particles under a deep water wave tend to move in
circular orbits, while those under intermediate and
shallow water waves tend to follow elliptical paths.
The magnitude of the water particle motion
is greatest at the surface and decreases with in-
creasing depth.There is little decrease in the case
of shallow water waves currents at the bottom are
almost as strong as those at the surface. Deep
water waves, on the other hand, only affect the
water column down to a depth approximately
equal to one-half the wave length.Thus, while a
diver might find it impossible to work in 50 feet of
water with surface waves greater than several hun-
dred feet in length, he would not even be aware of
waves shorter than 100 feet in length. The effects
on reef stability would be analogous: deep water
waves would affect reef elements while intermedi-
ate and shallow water waves might move the ele-
ments (and bottom sediments) easily.
Observing waves at the surface will involve
three things: estimating wave height, wave
period and wave direction. This will be relatively
easy if only one wave train is present, but may be
more difficult if two or more are present. Never-
theless, the same procedures apply -just try to
observe individual wave trains separately. If the
sea is too confused, estimate the characteristics of
the dominant wave only.
Wave height Figure 4.2, is the vertical
distance between the top (crest) and the bottom
(trough) of the wave. If waves are very regular,
the height of each successive wave will be nearly
identical. If wave heights vary, the "significant
wave height" should be estimated this is the
average height of the highest one-third of the
waves. Estimate wave heights to the nearest foot.
Wave period is the time it takes successive
wave crests to pass a fixed point. When wave
period is measured, record the total time it takes
n wave crests to pass, then divide by n-1, where n
is large enough to average out variations in
period. Round the result to the nearest second. A
convenient value ofn is 11 since the total time is
then divided by 10 an easy calculation. Count
only the passage of crests from the larger waves
and neglect the smaller ones, if the surface is

Figure 4.2





Wave direction is the direction from which
the waves are coming, not the direction in which
they are moving. For example, waves approaching
from the northeast would be recorded as 450.
Measure direction to the nearest 50.

Water Temperature
The temperature of seawater tends to vary
with season, location and depth. Seasonal tempera-
tures can vary by 10 degrees centigrade, or more,
depending on latitude. Regardless of season and lo-
cation, there is usually a difference between sur-
face and bottom temperatures of a few degrees
(this may not occur in some cases where water
depths are shallow and where the water column is
well-mixed). This temperature drop may be grad-
ual from surface to bottom or it may be sudden, oc-
curring at an interface between two distinct layers
of water called a thermocline. In some cases where
water depths are great, there may be three (or
more) layers and two (or more) thermoclines.
When water temperatures are measured as
part of a reef siting or monitoring dive, the water
temperature should be measured in situ, just under
the surface, above and below a thermocline, and
near the bottom. The depths at which the thermo-
clines lie should be noted.

Salinity is a measure of the amount of dis-
solved solids in water. It is usually expressed in
parts per thousand (ppt), with normal seawater hav-
ing a salinity of 33 to 37 ppt. Salinity may be sig-
nificantly less near fresh water sources such as
river mouths, tidal inlets and offshore springs.
There is a unique relationship between the density,
temperature and salinity of seawater: knowing any
two specifies the third. Appendix C illustrates

Unlike water temperature, salinity does not
have to be measured in situ. It can be measured
on board a ship or on land from water samples
collected by divers. It can be measured by any
number of ways, but probably the simplest is with
a thermometer and a hydrometer. A more expen-
sive but simpler refractometer uses a visual
method to determine salinity by measuring the
refractive index of the water. It is independent of
temperature. Water samples should be collected
on the reef, since that is where encrusting organ-
isms and fish will be. There is no need to take
water samples in the water column unless pelagic
species are being investigated.

Transparency and turbidity are two terms
used to describe the clarity of water. Transpar-
ency is a measure of the avility of water to
transmit light, while turbidity is a measure of the
amount of particles suspended in the water: as
turvidity increases transparency decreases. These
measurements will vary with the number, size and
type of particles suspended in the water, and with
the nature and intensity of the illumination.
One of the simplest ways of measuring
water clarity is with a secchi disk a circular disk
whose surface is divided into quadrants painted
white or black. Oceanographers lower the disk
into the water from a ship and record the depth at
which the disk is no longer visible.
Divers can also emply a secchi disk, but in
a slightly different way by measuring the horizon-
tal distance along the bottom to a point when the
disk in no longer visible (See Figure 4.3). Note
that divers must be careful not to stir up bottom

Figure 4.3


20 cm

sediments when this technique is used; if clarity is
to be measured on a dive, this should be the first
task performed so that diver activity during other
tasks will not affect the results.

Dissolved Oxygen
Dissolved oxygen affects the health and dis-
tribution of finfish, shellfish and other creatures in-
habiting a reef. Unfortunately, it is difficult to
measure accurately. Since it varies with tempera-
ture and pressure, water samples cannot be col-
lected and brought to the surface for analysis
unless special techniques are employed.These may
be beyond the scope of routine reef monitoring.
For those that are interested, section 8.8.3 of the
"NOAA Diving Manual" (Miller, 1979) describes
procedures that can be used to collect and trans-
port water samples for later dissolved oxygen

Bottom Sediments
Bottom sediment characteristics are one of
the most important factors controlling the stability
of an artificial reef. If the bottom has a low bear-
ing capacity or if it is susceptible to liquification
during storms, reef elements will settle.
In general, it is very difficult to accurately
estimate the bearing capacity of bottom sediments
with either in situ or laboratory tests. This is due
to the fact that the results depend upon the type of
test performed and the degree to which the sedi-
ment sample is disturbed during sampling and test-
ing. However, there are some basic correlations
between the type of sediment, its resistance to
penetration and its bearing capacity. These will be
discussed later in this chapter.
First, it is necessary to adopt a sediment clas-
sification system (see Appendix D).Bottom sedi-
ments can be composed of a variety of types and
sizes of particles. Clay, silt, sand, gravel, shell
and rock are those most commonly encountered.
The finer particles (clay and some silts) are cohe-
sive there are electrochemical forces between par-
ticles that account for most of the strength of the
sediment. The coarser sediments (sand, shell and
gravel) are cohesionless and rely solely upon fric-
tion between particles for strength.
Rock may occur in large formations or as
fragments suspended on or in other sediments. It
sometimes occurs as outcrops on the bottom, but
is usually overlain by sediments a few inches to
several feet in thickness. Rocks occurring off-
shore of Florida are sedimentary in origin, with
sand and/or shell cemented together. These sedi-
mentary rocks possess varying strengths, and in
some cases may fracture or wear readily.

Gravel is a term used to describe small
pieces of rock ranging from many centimeters to a
few millimeters in diameter.
Sand particles are smaller than gravel, but
larger than silt. The division between sand and silt
is from .05 .074 mm, depending upon the classifi-
cation system used. Most sand-sized particles oc-
curring offshore are quartz particles or shell
Silt particles are smaller than sand but larger
than .002 .006 mm in size. Silts can display
some cohesive properties, but this is due usually to
the presence of small amounts of clay particles.
Clay particles are very fine (< .002 to .006
mm, depending upon the classification system
used). The most common clay minerals are mont-
morillonite, kaolinite and illite. Clays can be very
sensitive (losing much of their strength when

Sediment Correlation
Since there is a fairly good correlation be-
tween sediment type (i.e., size) and strength, it is
important that the reef diver be able to differentiate
between them. This can be accomplished in two
ways. First, sediments of various sizes can be ob-
tained and kept in containers for visual comparison
with sediment samples obtained from reef sites.
This method is useful for distinguishing between
gravels and coarse, medium and fine sands.
The second way of differentiating between
sediment sizes is more useful for distinguishing be-
tween coarse-grained sediments, silts and clays. It
involves placing a sediment sample in a jar of
water, shaking it and letting the particles settle.
The sand and coarse-grained sediments will settle
out in less than 1 minute, the silt particles will set-
tle in 10 minutes to 1 hour, while the clay particles
may take several hours to settle (Bowles, 1977).
By noting the thicknesses of the layers, one will
have an idea of the proportions of different size
sediments in the sample.
In general, fine-grained sediments such as
silts and clays should be avoided when siting artifi-
cial reefs, unless rock lies close to the sediment sur-
face. They are usually soft and reef materials
placed on them will tend to settle. Sediments com-
posed of sand, shell and gravel provide greater
strength and are preferred. Even these sediments
are subject to occasional settlement problems.
This usually occurs during periods of high wave ac-
tivity. The waves set up cyclic variations in the
pressure of water contained in the pores between
the sediment particles. When the pore water pres-
sure equals the pressure exerted by the submerged
sediment, the soil liquifies and loses its strength.

This may happen only briefly, but can allow reef
elements to settle.
Coarse-grained sediments that have nearly
equal proportions of various grain sizes are called
"well graded" and are not normally subject to liqui-
fication. Poorly graded sediments (i.e., sediments
composed almost entirely of a certain grain size)
are called "well sorted" or "uniformly graded" and
are more susceptible to liquefaction. Of these,
fine sands tend to liquify more easily than coarse
sands and gravels (Chang and Ford, 1983).
Those same sediments that tend to resist
liquefaction (well graded sediments composed of
sand, shell or gravel) also offer the greatest bear-
ing capacity. While it is a difficult parameter to
estimate accurately, reef divers can develop a feel-
ing for the suitability of various sediments for reef
construction with a simple tool called a penetrome-
ter (see Appendix F). A penetrometer is a rod that
is forced into the bottom a known distance by a
load that is measured. A sediment with a high
bearing capacity will require a greater load to push
the penetrometer into the bottom a fixed distance
than will a sediment with a low bearing capacity.
By using the penetrometer at several sites
where artificial reefs have already been con-
structed and where varying degrees of settlement
have been observed, reef divers can develop a cor-
relation between measured penetration resistance
and potential settlement. Of course, other factors
such as water depth, type of reef material, etc. will
have to be accounted for when the correlation is

Figure 4.4




Drive Head


This figure from the Naval Civil Engineering
Laboratory, 1985, shows one of several types
of penetrometers that might be used. It is a
good choice since it was developed specifi-
cally for use underwater.

Rock bottoms will provide a good founda-
tion for artificial reefs, particularly when overlain
by a few centimeters of sediment. The rock will
limit the depth of settlement while the sediment
will help stabilize the reef elements against move-
ment caused by waves and currents.
Determining whether or not rock lies below
loose sediment can be accomplished by pushing,
driving or jetting a probe into the bottom until it
will go no further. If rock is encountered, its depth
below the bottom should be measured. Note that
the reef diver is usually not interested in any more
than the first meter of sediment. If rock lies deeper
than that, it will be of little use in halting the settle-
ment of a reef, unless the reef is constructed of
very large elements.
Remember other factors besides bottom sedi-
ment characteristics must be considered when se-
lecting a reef site. Water depth, the influence of
currents and waves, and the type of reef materials
will all affect the success of a reef. For example,
steel fuel tanks with the ends removed (thus resem-
bling pipe) were placed in 70 feet of water off Jack-
sonville on June 1, 1983. By June 30, 1983 some
of the tanks had worked their way into a limestone
bottom as much as 70 cm. The tanks were from
1 m 2 m in diameter and 5 m 8 m in length,
with a wall thickness of about 6 mm. Concrete
pipes of comparable diameters were placed at the
same time, but settled only through a few centime-
ters of sand over the limestone. Calculations
showed that the submerged weight of the concrete
pipe (per m of length) was 2 to 3 times that of the
steel tanks a significant difference. Divers ob-
served that the steel tanks rolled back and forth
with only 1 2 foot waves at the surface, while the
concrete pipes remained still. The movement of
the steel tanks abraded the soft rock and the tanks
worked their way into the bottom.

Sediment Sampling
Reef divers may be concerned with both the
surface sediments and those below the surface,
which can include unconsolidated sediments as
well as consolidated sediments (rock).
The best way to sample unconsolidated sedi-
ments, both on the surface and beneath, is with a
thin-walled core tube (usually clear plastic or PVC
pipe, a few cm in diameter). The method (de-
scribed in Methods Summary) provides a consis-
tent way of sampling, while ensuring that all grain
sizes present in the sediment are retained in the
sample, and that there is minimal disturbance to
the sample. A clear plastic pipe allows the reef sci-
entist to examine any layers in the sediment and to
perform grain size analyses on the sample. If a
sediment sample is collected by hand and placed in
a container, the finer particles can slip through the

fingers or be suspended in the water and the sedi-
ment structure will be destroyed.
If a surface sample is all that is required, the
core tube needs only to be about 6 inches long.
Partially filling a longer tube is not good practice
since this allows the sample to shift in the tube and
the sediment structure to be altered during han-
dling. The tube should be pushed fully into the
bottom, capped at the top and then sealed at the
bottom with a flat plate or the diver's hand. The
tube is then removed, inverted and capped at the
bottom. Be sure to mark the tube so that the loca-
tion and time of sampling are known; make sure
the top of the sample is marked as well. Proce-
dures for obtaining longer cores are not much dif-
ferent, except it is usually necessary to drive the
tube into the bottom. Simple impact corers have
been devised to make this task simpler (Naval
Civil Engineering Laboratory, 1985; Sanders,
An important consideration in obtaining sam-
ples of unconsolidated sediments is that the loca-
tion from which they are obtained be
representative of the area being investigated. Oth-
erwise, the sample will not be useful in charac-
terizing the sediments in the area: it will give reef
scientists a false impression of what the bottom is
like. Pooling multiple samples from the same site
will be more representative than a single sample.

Mapping is a crucial part of artificial reef re-
search. Physical and biological measurements
may be of little value if the locations of the meas-
urements are not known, or if divers cannot return
to the same points later to take additional measure-
ments. Reef divers should become familiar with
basic mapping techniques so they can use them
during site surveys and monitoring surveys.
Divers should strive to make accurate, rather
than precise, maps (see Chapter 1 for discussion of

this). The desired degree of ac-
curacy should be determined
before any diver enters the
water, based on the intended
use of the data, bottom time
limitations, etc. Remember, it
will take much more time to
make measurements accurate to
one meter than it will to make
measurements accurate to five
meters or ten meters; in some
cases the less accurate measure-
ments may be sufficient.
Figure 4.5 and the follow-
ing table will assist reef divers
in determining the accuracy re-
quirements for locating an ob-
ject. Note that for a certain

allowable position error, the allowable angular er-
ror decreases and the length of a measured distance
increases. For example, if an object must be lo-
cated within five meters of its actual position, the
maximum allowable angular error over a distance
of 50 meters is 50; the maximum allowable angular
error over a distance of 100 meters is 2 1/20. In
most cases, however short the measured distance,
will an angular error greater than 100 be consid-
ered acceptable for mapping purposes.

Establishing Control Points
Whenever bottom features, reef elements or
data collection stations must be located, a point (or
points) of reference must be available; otherwise,
there will be no way to accurately relocate them.
These points of reference, called control points or
bench marks, should be established around and/or
through the reef site so that no object or feature is
very far from a control point. This also insures
that if a control point is disturbed or lost, another
can be re-established easily.
Control points can be made of anything that
is durable, that will remain in the same location
and that can be easily located and uniquely identi-
fied, perhaps with its own tag or number. A good
choice for many areas will be steel rods or pipes.
They should be long enough so that the top will be
two or three feet above the bottom, after the rod or
pipe is driven into the bottom several feet. Both
horizontal and vertical measurements can be refer-
enced to the control points. Each point should be
given a different name, number or letter to distin-
guish it from the others. It will be necessary to la-
bel the points underwater to avoid confusion
during mapping.
Once control points are installed, distances
(measured to the nearest meter) and azimuths3 be-
tween the points should be measured so that their
positions with respect to one another can be deter-

Figure 4.5

Ax---Position Error



mined. An azimuth is an angle measured clock-
wise from north; azimuths will lie between 00 and
3590. The elevation at the top of each control point
should also be determined (use a depth gauge to do
this). Divers may wish to refer to any basic land
surveying text for a discussion on how to check
the accuracy with which control points have been
mapped (look for discussion on traverse closure
and adjustment).
Please note that the exact position of a con-
trol point (i.e., latitude and longitude or LORAN
coordinates) need not be determined. Without
very sophisticated (and expensive equipment, it
will be impossible to perform this task. Instead,
the approximate surface position corresponding to
a control point should be determined so that the di-
vers can repeatedly find the control point and
make accurate measurements using it as a point of

Locating Objects on the Bottom
In order to locate an object (or data collec-
tion station), it is necessary to reference it to one
or more control points. The horizontal position
can be found given any one of the following:
the distance and direction from a single
control point or bench mark.
the distances from two control points and
an approximate direction from either con-
trol point.
the distances from three control points.
These are illustrated in Figure 4.6. Note
that in the case where an object is located using
two control points, distance measurements alone
will not suffice. For example, suppose an object is
determined to be 25m radius from point one and
another arc with a 35m radius from point two re-
veals that there are two intersections of the arcs.
Thus, there are two possible locations of the object
for the given distances. In order to determine
which location is correct, an approximate direction
from either control point to the object is required.
If three control points are used, the arcs will inter-
sect on only one point and directional information
is not needed.
Divers should be careful when making meas-
urements to pull the tape taught (gravity and cur-
rents may both cause the tape to sag or distort,
causing measured distances to exceed actual dis-
tances). Divers should also be careful when meas-
uring distances along a slope or from a point on
the bottom to another point above the bottom. In
such cases, the distance measured by the tape (the
slope distance) will be greater that the true horizo-
nal distance (see Figure 4.7). This error can be
corrected, if a diver measures the depth at both
ends of the tape with his depth gauge (be sure to

Figure 4.6

o) Using I Control Point


Ctrio Control
Point I I Point 2

alse Position

b) Using 2 Control Points

Control I Point .
Point 2
c) Using 3 Control Points

use a good quality, oil-filled gauge or electronic
dive computer which measures depth and be sure to
use the same gauge to measure at both ends). The
true horizontal distance is related to the slope dis-
tance and the difference in depth (elevation) of the
two points by the following equation:
X = S2 D2
X = true horizonal distance
S = measured slope distance
D = difference in depth between the two
Be sure to use consistent units, i.e., if X and S
are measured in meters, make sure that D is meas-
ured in meters, not in feet.
Vertical distances can be measured as de-
scribed above by reading a pressure gauge at two
locations and taking the difference between that
two readings.

Figure 4.7

Point I

American Society of Civil Engineers, Pip-
lines in the Ocean. 1974, 110 pp.
American Society for Testing and Materials,
"Underwater Soil Sampling, Testing and Construc-
tion Control", ASTM Special Technical Publica-
tion 501 1972.
Aska, D.Y., ed., "Artificial Reefs: Confer-
ence Proceeding", Florida Sea Grant Report 41,
Bowles, J.E., Foundation Analysis and De-
sign, McGraw-Hill, 1977, 750 pp.
Bortone, S.A. and Van Orman, D., "Biologi-
cal Survey and Analysis of Florida
Artificial Reefs", Florida Sea Grant Techni-
cal Paper 34. 1985a.
Bortone, S.A., and Van Orman, D., "Data
Base Information and Assessment of Biotic and
Abiotic Parameters Associated with Artificial
Reefs", Florida Sea Grant Technical Paper 35,
Chang, H.H. and Ford, J., "Pipeline Shore
Approach: Analysis and Design", ASCE Journal
of Transportation Engineering, VoL 109, No. 6,
Grace, R.A., Marine Outfall Systems: Plan-
ning. Design and Construction. Prentice Hall, Inc.,
Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1978.

Herbich, John B., Offshore Pipeline Design
Elements. Marcel Dekker, Inc., 1981, 233 pp.
Johnson, R.E. and Hilder, FA., "Isopycnal
Temperature-Salinity Diagrams", Old
Dominion University School of Oceanogra-
phy, Technical Report 41 1981.
Kim, T.I., Sollitt, C.K. and Hancock, D.R,
"Wave Forces on Submerged Artificial Reefs Fab-
ricated from Scrap Tires", Oregon State University
Sea Grant Publication T-81-003, 1981.
Miller, James W., ed., NOAA Diving Man-
ual. U.S. Department of Commerce, 1979.
Naval Civil Engineering Laboratory, "Deter-
mine Seafloor Soil Properties with Diver Operated
Geotechnical Tools", NCEL Techdata Sheet 85-
23, Port Hueneme, CA 1985.
Raymond, B., "Underwater Photogrammetic
Survey of a Tire Reef", in Aska, D.Y., ed., Artifi-
cial Reefs: Conference Proceedings", Florida Sea
Grant Report 41, 1981, pp. 211-218.
Sander, J.E., "Diver-Operated Simple Hand
Tools for Coring Nearshore Sands", Journal of
Sedimentary Petrology. VoL 38, No. 2, 1968, pp.
Schencek, H., Introduction to Ocean Engi-
neering. McGraw Hill. 1975.351 pp.

Chapter 5

Site Selection And Evaluation By Divers

By Heyward Mathews

The most critical phase of any artificial reef
construction project is the selection of its site.
A properly selected reef site will attract, for a long
time, large numbers of fish to a location which is
easily found by fishermen and divers. Improperly
sited, the reef can become lost, or settle into bot-
tom sediments, or attract only a minimal amount
of fish. It also can become a hazard to navigation
and bottom trawlers or even be found washed up
on some beach. The research diver plays a vital
role in the site selection process by providing first
hand observations of the sea floor that cannot be
provided by simple fathometer surveys.

Some General
Considerations for Reef Sites
In most reef building projects, a general lo-
cation for the reef site is usually selected, either by
local officials, a fishing or diving club or civic or-
ganization. There is a tendency among anglers to
select an existing favorite fishing spot to "sweeten
it up" or make a "good bottom" even better. If the
site has any type of natural reef or "live bottom"
then the use of such a site for an artificial reef is
discouraged by the permitting agency. Part of the
reason for this is that there is insufficient research
to determine what effects an artificial reef may
have on the functioning of a natural reef system.
In addition, the artificial reef materials may actu-
ally damage some of the existing natural bottom
community, such as incrusting corals and sponges.
When an artificial reef is built in the middle
of a flat, featureless bottom, it can serve as an oa-
sis in a desert of sand. Divers have observed great
concentrations of fish on new artificial reefs
within a few days of placement in such areas.
Most offshore areas which have such barren bot-
toms are usually well known to local divers and
fishermen. Where possible, the nearest site to a
sea buoy or inlet is preferable to save both time
and fuel costs for the users traveling to and from
the reef. The site should not be located in or adja-
cent to a heavily used shipping channel or fairway,
because these areas will be in use day and night by
small boats.
Another important consideration for the site
selection is local commercial fishing operations,

particularly those using nets or trawls. Often there
are obstructions or snags in an area that is already
avoided by net fishermen. The selection of such an
area will avoid any conflict with existing fishing
operations, and benefit the net fishermen by having
a buoy in the area of the obstructions that will al-
low them to avoid it completely. An existing
wreck can be an excellent starting point for an arti-
ficial reef, and the addition of materials can only in-
crease the fisherman's choices around the wreck
(see Appendix F for further information on site se-

Role of Divers in Site Planning
Divers and diving clubs can make a very im-
portant contribution during the planning stages of a
reef project by surveying local fishing spots and
potential artificial reef sites. Often anglers have
only a general picture of the bottom based on depth
sounder tracings. They can seldom tell if the bot-
tom has living corals, sponges, or other live bottom
organisms, especially if they are low profile. The
fathometer tracing will not show the supporting
ability of the bottom, so the diver must test the sub-
strate with his hand, some type of bottom probe, or
retrieval of a bottom sample to determine if it will
properly support the reef materials. Chapter 4 pro-
vides further discussions about testing and describ-
ing sediment for its ability to support reef materials.

Preliminary Surface Survey
Once a general area has been selected, the
diver/biologist should make a systematic fathome-
ter survey of the area unless it has already been sur-
veyed and fished extensively in the past. If
possible, a permanent record of this survey should
be made by using a paper tracing or video of the
fathometer readings. A series of transects using a
good quality fathometer is the least costly and time
consuming way to do this. In most areas the "live
bottoms" are rock ledges or outcrops. Generally,
these structures may have some lateral orientation
with respect to the coastline. This occurs as the
continental shelf slopes seaward where it intersects
rock strata that form the ledges and outcrops which
have become covered with benthic communities.
Knowing that such structures run at some angle
with respect to the shore-line, makes it easy to es-
tablish transect lines. They should be set up to run
at right angles to these structures to reduce the

chance of one being missed. Once the transect
lines indicate an area devoid of any hard bottom
communities, then the physical survey of the bot-
tom can begin.

Underwater Site Survey
Before any reef site is finally chosen, there
must be an underwater survey by divers to verify
that there is no live bottom and make a physical
and visual check of the bottom type and measure
its supporting ability. Generally, the surveyors
should swim a 50-meter radius around the poten-
tial site to verify there are no significant "live bot-
tom" communities in the site area. Significant
"live bottoms" would include any large rock
ledges or outcroppings having an incrusting (at-
tached) or fouling community. Even the bare sand
bottoms have some marine life living in or on it,
but cannot support a large community of incrust-
ing invertebrates and fish. The divers should docu-
ment fish and benthic organisms along a 50-meter
transect line. It is best to count the organisms for
a one to three meter width on either side of the
transect line. Generally, a two-diver team is used
and the lead diver swims in a constant direction
from some starting point with a slate, and the sec-
ond diver follows and plays out the measured tran-
sect line until the correct distance has been
covered. If possible, replicate transects should be
run in different parts of the site permit area to esti-
mate the patchiness of the biological community.
If a known point can be used for the transect line,
then later runs along the same line after construc-
tion, it will provide excellent data as to the effec-
tiveness of the reef building effort. If possible, a
specimen of any organisms that cannot be identi-
fied by the divers should be collected and pre-
served for later identification by a qualified
biologist. If collection is not possible, a photo
should be made instead.
Surveys by a towed camera for hard bottom
are inadequate, for they can sometimes be mislead-
ing. They may show a bottom that looks solid, but
in fact may have a firm sand overlay on soft silt or
clay sediment. While it is unusual, there are some
locations where divers have observed a thin sand
layer which has covered a much softer sediment
which cannot support reef material. Only a diver
using a long (at least a five-foot steel or fiberglass
rod) sediment probe can check the sediment to pre-
vent later loss of reef material by sinking.
In such instances, where there is evidence
that soft sediment exists, reef materials should be
selected that will provide profile and habitat even
after some sinking has occurred. If, for example,
the reef is to be built from bridge rubble, then a
layer of small sized rubble could be placed first to
provide a base, then the larger sections and pilings
could be placed on top to provide maximum pro-

file. It may be possible to use low-density materi-
als such as tires, on soft bottom sites. However,
great care must be taken when using low-density
reef materials since these materials are prone to
shifting during storms. Any reef that is in exposed
waters (those receiving direct waves from the open
sea) should be constructed of only high-density ma-
terials in depths of less than 80 to 90 feet. In many
areas, the Army Corps has stopped permitting tire
reefs in offshore waters because of the possibility
of the materials shifting off the reef site and even
ending up on the beach (see Appendix G for more
information on reef materials and construction).

Biological Survey Report
Once the underwater survey is completed, a
written initial biological report should be made
(See Appendix H, pages 3 and 4 for example).
This report is often required by the various permit-
ting agencies as part of the original application.
This report should include a careful description of
the bottom material (sand, shell, mud, etc.) the de-
grees of firmness (as measured by sediment probe
and core sample described in Chapter 4) and a de-
scription of the biological community present on
the site. The exact position of the site should be de-
termined by Loran C reading and several compass
bearings to fixed points on land if it is in view.
This initial biological report is not only im-
portant for the permit application, but it is also im-
portant to provide a comparison of the site before
and after the reef construction. In most instances
of a reef failing to remain on site or its loss of ef-
fectiveness, the initial site survey, or the lack of
such a survey was a major cause in the failure.

Post-Deployment Survey
Usually a post-deployment reef survey is re-
quired to verify placement and fulfill the terms of
the construction contract with the barge and tug
crew. Some serious problems have occurred in the
past when the actual site placement was several
hundred yards away from the site surveyed by the
divers.If the site is near any live bottoms, be sure
to have the dive team present before the first place-
ment to make a final check. Often the use of a
small marker buoy will insure that the materials
are placed in the exact location selected. This
marker buoy will also help prevent the materials
from being scattered by the barge crew. The pro-
file of the materials appears to be very important,
so the maximum piling up of the materials is de-
sired, and a small jug on the site will help greatly.
A post deployment map and photographs should
also be prepared to document the scatter and pro-
file of materials immediately after the deployment.
This will be useful for later comparisons to deter-
mine changes over time.

Divers play an essential role in reef site se-
lection well before and even after a reef site is de-
veloped. They can insure that existing "live
bottom" habitats will not be harmed, they can pre-
vent loss of reef material in soft bottoms and they
can document the scatter and profile of the reef
materials after the reef is constructed. Feedback
from trained diver-observers is essential for maxi-
mizing the effectiveness of reef site selection and
construction efforts.

Mathews, Heyward H. Artificial Reef Site
Selection and Evaluation. August 1979. Florida
Sea Grant Publication # MAFS-20.

Mathews, Heyward H. Artificial Fishing
Reefs, Materials and Construction. September
1983. Florida Sea Grant Publication # MAFS-29.
Mathews, Heyward H. Artificial Reefs:Per-
mit Application Guidelines.October 1984. Florida
Sea Grant Publication # SGEB-4.
Burchfield, Bill. Constructing an Artificial
Reef Buoy. June 1979. Florida Sea Grant Publica-
tion # MAFS-9.
To receive these publications, write Flor-
ida Sea Grant College Program, Building 803,
University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32611.


Chapter 6

Collecting Biological Data:

Benthic & Planktonic Plants & Animals

by Quinton White

The presence of plankton and benthic organ-
isms and plants are important reasons why
many species of fish are attracted to an artificial
reef. These organisms make up a living commu-
nity which provides food and shelter and are the
major living components of the artificial reef com-
The sampling necessary to look at the pm-
ducivity of an artificial reef must include not only
the fish, but the benthic (bottom living) and plank-
tonic (free-floating) organisms which are associ-
ated with it. Biomass is the term used to define
the total amount of living material in a given area.
When the biomass is measured at a specific point
and time, it is called the standing crop of the area.
Standing crop differs from productivity in that it
does not look at the change in biomass amount
over the time, nor at the rate at which biomass is
produced. Productivity is the change in biomass
per unit time.
To understand how productivity on a reef
changes, we can construct a food chain or food
web. The food chain illustrates "who eats whom."
It is based on photosynthesizing plant materials
which are called the primary producers. This plant
biomass, in turn, is consumed by herbivores (ani-
mals that eat plants), and then the herbivores are
consumed by the carnivores (animals that eat ani-
mals). This can be illustrated by the food pyramid
shown in Figure 6-1.

Figure 6.1

Why Sample Benthic &
Planktonic Organisms?
To understand how a reef functions and to
unravel the question of which fish are attracted to
the reef and why; you must understand the reef's
living components and interrelationships. Since
the benthic and planktonic organisms associated
with any reef comprise "food" for fish, it is an es-
sential part of the puzzle that needs to be deter-

The Difficulties Sampling
Benthic & Planktonic
The complexity, or at least the potential com-
plexity, of the planktonic and benthic invertebrates
and plants on an artificial reef structure is im-
mense. Over time, different organisms become at-
tached to a reef and compete with their neighbors
for space. In some cases, one or two species will
dominate, whereas in other cases a number of spe-
cies will crowd together. It is impossible to inven-
tory the entire reef structure, therefore we are
forced to divide it into small subsections which
can be studied in detail This is sampling. Since
we are not going to examine every square centime-
ter of the reef, it is important that the sampling be

Predators: Animals that eat
other Animals

S0E Carnivores: Animals that eat Animals
g_ P Herbivores: Animals that eat plants and other Primary
g Primary Producers: Phytoplankton, Algae and Plants

Food Pyramid: Each box represents the relative biomass of plant materials and benthic inverte-
brates found in the food chain associated with natural and artificial reef ecosystems.

done systematically so that it may be repeated accu-
rately on other similar structures for comparisons.
It is essential that systematic sampling be done, us-
ing replicate efforts, so that meaningful compari-
sons can be made. Isolated observations are useful
but not meaningful for making comparisons or de-
termining causation, as is systematic quantification
and sampling.
It is beyond the scope of this chapter to dis-
cuss the philosophy and statistics behind sampling
theory. Be aware that a single observation is use-
ful, but it gives you no information about change
over time. The single observation merely shows
that the event happened "once." To accurately fol-
low the changes that may be occurring on a reef, it
is necessary to use repetitive sampling techniques
that are as nearly alike as possible. For example,
Diver Dan makes a series of observations using a
six-inch square area as his sample size. He takes a
series of closeup photographs and scrapes this area
and places the sample in a plastic bag to be ana-
lyzed. Scuba Sam makes a similar dive at a later
date, but uses a square foot as his sample area. He
photographs the area and also scrapes material into
a plastic bag for future analysis. Later, Data Ana-
lyzer Debbie looks at the two samples. If she did
not know that they came from different size sam-
ple sites, the analyses and her conclusions might
be very misleading. Remember, it is important to
be consistent in sampling methods. Once you have
decided on a sampling method, stick with it. If
you find it needs to be modified, take special care
to record these changes in method on the data

Identification of Plants &
Encrusting Organisms
Depending on the time of year and the gen-
eral location of an artificial reef, the potential for
finding variation in the plankton and benthic com-
munities is tremendous. There are approximately
1,500,000 species of living things now described
and named in the scientific literature. Luckily,
800,000 of these are non-marine insects, but that
still leaves approximately 700,000 species. Per-
haps you are beginning to get the idea that it is
very difficult to know exactly what might be found
where. Most organisms can be identified only af-
ter they have been properly sampled, preserved
and returned to a laboratory. References listed at
the end of this chapter are a partial bibliography of
books and reference material for identifying inver-
tebrates. Even when experienced scientists iden-
tify an organism down to the genus and species
level, they will often send it to an independent
authority for verification.
Scientists would like to identify organisms to
the species level. This is where you see the genus

name capitalized and underlined, and the species
name just underlined without caps (for example
Millepora alciconis. Fire Coral). The genus and
species names are underlined because they come
from Greek or Latin derivatives and are foreign
words in our print. We italicize the print in books
for such names; but since we do not have that ca-
pability with typewriters, we normally underline
them. This is also true in handwritten cases.

Planning & Preparation for
Standardize Everything
It is essential that regular and repetitive sam-
pling be done in order to detect any trends or bio-
logical patterns that develop. Much care should
be taken when deciding how much sampling can,
or should be done. For example, it is better to take
a number of small samples rather than one large
sample. This is because you have a greater chance
of getting more and different species in a number
of small samples than you do in one large sample.
You should therefore decide how many small sam-
ples you can take in a given research dive. Re-
member that each diver is limited by bottom time,
experience, and sampling capability. The diffi-
culty of working underwater compounds the sam-
pling problems. Experience has shown that most
divers are initially overly optimistic in their objec-

tives. They think that they can gather more sam-
ples than is actually possible. However with
experience, you will find that task loading from
having to work safely underwater will limit how
much you can accomplish. One general guideline
is to think about what you can do and then try to
do half of it; then be happy if you get at least half
of that done.
In standardizing everything, be sure that the
collecting routines and the information that is col-
lected each time is consistent and repetitive. It
does not do any good to have one set of divers re-
cording salinity and turbidity, while the next set of
divers is only observing temperature. Prioritize
the information that is needed and make sure that
it is obtained on each and every sampling event.

How Big is a Sample?
It is difficult to give an a piori (before the
fact) desirable quantitative size for each benthic
sample. What can be done will be partially based
on the type of reef being studied and the nature of
the question to be answered. Benthic communi-
ties are normally attached to the bottom or some
substrate associated with the reef. A number of
large pieces of concrete placed on the bottom as
an artificial reef will be impossible to bring to the

surface to examine. If the need to collect benthic
samples is a possibility, place small, removable
pieces on the reef that could be easily returned to
the surface for analysis. Typically, on any one trip
to a reef site, at least three samples should be
taken. The number three is useful because it is an
odd number of samples from which data can be ex-
tracted and better analyzed statistically.

Whenever possible, a series of photographs
should be used to document benthic growth. Some
suggestions for successful scientific (data) photo-
graphs of benthic life are:
1) Include a scale or some known object for
scale in the photograph;
2) Take the photograph at an oblique angle
in order to show some degree of three-di
mensional structure--hence, it is often best
not to shoot straight down on a subject,
but rather to shoot at an angle (note how
ever, you would shoot straight down on a
subject when accurate quantification is
needed from the photograph;
3) Get close to the subject. Broad sweeping
photographs are not good for species iden
tification, but can be used to indicate the
quantity of growth present in a given area;
4) Include a date and location tag in the
photo series;
5) Make sure the photos are recorded in a
photo log book.

In general, collected specimens should be
preserved as soon as possible after they are
brought to the surface. This can be done in a 10
percent formalin solution then later transferred to a
40 percent isopropyl alcohol or 70 percent ethanol
to make it easier (less irritating smell) on the per-
son doing the identification. For plant specimens,
initial as well as final preservation in alcohol is
adequate as natural pigmentation will usually be
lost using either technique.

How to Collect Samples
One of the most difficult things to tell a diver
is how to collect specimen samples. What works
for one diver will not always work for another. Di-
vers often vary tremendously in the degree of com-
fort and efficiency they show underwater. It will
be necessary for you to develop some of your own

techniques by trial and error. Think through ex-
actly what you want to accomplish and carefully
plan how to best complete the task. Collecting
most benthic (fouling) organisms, will usually re-
quire some scraping device and a container for the
sample. Use of a simple putty knife and plastic
zip lock bags often suffice. Fabrication of special
scraping tools may be needed, especially if the
sample is to be quantified.

Materials and Methods
Some thought should be given in advance re-
garding materials needed to handle the kinds of
specimens brought back to the surface. A number
of handy items include plastic bags and refrigera-
tor containers in which to place your specimens,
along with the necessary formalin for preserva-
tion. If the substrate to be sampled is large and im-
movable, then a small scraper, or hammer and
chisel may be necessary to dislodge the speci-
mens. During sampling, care should be taken not
to disrupt the substrate surface, and to prevent the
loss or escape of mobile organisms. The sampled
specimens can usually be placed in a plastic bag or
box, and returned easily to the boat. In planning
your dive, it would be wise not to attempt to carry
too many individual pieces back to the boat. This
simply increases the chance that some might be
lost. It also means that they may be confused or
mixed up. Confused or jumbled data is worthless.
Once on board the boat, the diver should preserve
the samples quickly, or at least keep them cool in
an ice chest until brought to shore. Immediate
processing can be important as many organisms
will die and deteriorate in the heat and low dis-
solved oxygen of the small sample bags or boxes.

Ideally, it would be nice to identify by name
all the specimens obtained using the scientific bi-
nomial nomenclature because these names are
unique. In practice, however, for much of the
work on artificial reefs, it will only be necessary
to recognize the fact that a given organism is a dif-
ferent species and not that it be identified to the ge-
nus species level. A general biology textbook can
be used as a source for the descriptions and classi-
fications of animals into related taxonomic groups
called Phyla, and plants into related taxonomic
groups called Divisions. Appendix I is a general-
ized classification scheme. These species lists can
also be used to suggest what species are generally
present on these reefs. References can be used to
identify species found along the Florida coast.
This reference list is fairly extensive and serves as
a good bibliography for invertebrate and marine
plant identification.

Once a specimen has been identified, it is a
good idea to save it for the reference collection. It
can be used later to help with future identifica-
tions. The reference collection will serve as an in-
valuable tool for training future reef research
divers as well. Much time can be saved by train-
ing new research divers to identify reef organisms
from reference specimens, before they actually
dive on the reef site.

Suggested References
Available from commercial bookstores.
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Amos, Stephen A. and William H. Amos.
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Arnold, Augusta Foote. The Sea-Beach at
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490 p.
Brattegard, Torleiv. 1970. Mysidacea from
Shallow Water in the Bahamas and Southern Flor-
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Cain, Thomas D. 1972. Additional Epi-
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Calder, Dale R. and Morris L Brehmre.
1967. Seasonal Occurrence of Epifauna on Test
Panels in Hampton Roads, Virginia. International
Journal of Oceanology and Limndogy 1 (3): 149-
Calder, Dale R. 1977. Guide to the Com-
mon Jellyfishes of South Carolina. South Carolina
Sea Grant Marine Advisory Bulletin 11. 13p.
Calgren, O. and J.W. Actiniaria, Zoantharia
and Ceriantharia from Shallow Water in the North-
western Gulf of Mexico. Published by the Insti-
tute of Marine Science, University of Texas 2 (2):
Chace, Fenner A. 1972. The Shrimps of the
Smithsonian-Bredin Caribbean Expeditions with a
Summary of West Indian Shallow-water Species
(Crustacea: Decapoda: Natania) Smithsonian Insti-
tute Press. 98: 179p.
Chitwood, B.G. 1951. North American Ma-
rine Nematodes. The Texas Journal of Science
(4): 617-665.
Coe, Wesley R. 1951. The Nemertean Fau-
nas of the Gulf of Mexico and of Southern Florida.
Bulletin of Marine Science of the Gulf and Carib-
bean 1 (3): 149-186.

Cook, David G. and Ralph O. Brinkhurst.
1973. Marine Flora and Fauna of the Northeastern
United States. Annelids: Oligochaeta. NOAA
Technical Report NMFS CIRC-374 21p.
Correa, Diva Diniz. 1961. Nemerteans from
Florida and Virgin Islands. Bulletin of Marine Sci-
ence of the Gulf and Caribbean. 11 (1): 44p.
Cutler, Edward B. 1977. Marine Flora and
Fauna of the Northeastern United States. Sipuncula
NOAA Technical Report NMFS Circular 403 7 p.
Day, John H. 1973. New Polychaeta from
Beaufort with a Key to all Species Recorded from
North Carolina. NOAA Technical Report NMFS
Deichmann, Elisabeth. 1939. The Holothuri-
ans of the Western Part of the Atlantic Ocean. Bul-
letin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at
Hvavard College. 71 (3): 44-226.
de Laubenfels, M. W. 1949. Sponges of the
Western Bahamas. American Museum Novitates.
No. 1431 25p.
de Laubenfels, M. W. 1953. A guide to the
Sponges of Eastern North America. University of
Miami Press.
de Laubenfels, M. W. 1953. Sponges from
the Gulf of Mexico. Bulletin of Marine Science of
the Gulf and Caribbean 2 (3): 511-557.
Dowds, Richard E. 1979. References for the
Identification of Marine Invertebrates on the South-
ern Atlantic Coast of the United States. U.S. De-
partment of Commerce. (NOAA Technical Report
NMFS SSRF-729) 37p.
Downey, Maureen E. Starfishes from the Car-
ibbean and Gulf of Mexico. Smithsonian Contribu-
tion to Zoology 1261: 158.
Dorjes, Jurgen. 1972. Georgia Coastal Re-
gion, Sapelo Island, U.SA.: Sedimentodogy and
Biology. VII Distribution and Zonation of Macro-
benthic Animals. Senchenbergiana marit 4: 169-
*Emerson, William K. and Morris K. Jacob-
son. 1976. Guide to Shells. Land. Freshwater. and
Marine from Nova Scotia to Florida. Alfred A.
Knopf, New York. 482p.
Farrell, Douglas H. 1979. Guide to Shallow-
water Mysids from Florida. Florida Department of
Environmental Regulation, Tampa 71p.
Fauchald, Kristian, 1977a. The Polychaete
Worms: Definition and Keys to the Orders. Fami-
lies and Genera. Natural History Museum of Los
Angels County, Science Series 28.
Fauchald, Kristian, 1977b. Polychaetes from
Intertidal Areas in Panama with a Review of Pre-
vious Shallow-Water Records. Smithsonian Institu-
tion Press, Washington, D.C. No. 221.

Field, Louise Randall. 1949. Sea Anemo-
nes and Corals of Beaufort. North Carolina. Duke
University Press 5: 29p.
Fox, Richard S. and Kenneth H. Bynum.
1975. The Amphipod Crustaceans of North Caro-
lina Estuarine Water. Chesapeake Science. 16
(4): 223-237.
Fox, Richard S. and Edward E. Ruppert.
1985. Shallow Water Marine Benthic Macroinver-
tebrates of South Carolina. University of South
Carolina Press, Columbia. 329p.
George, David and Jennifer. 1979. Ma
rine Life: and Illustrated Encyclopedia of Inverte-
brates in the Sea. John Wiley and Sons, New
York, 288p.
*Gosner, Kenneth L 1978. A Field Guide
to the Atlantic Seashore. Houghton Mifflin Com-
pany. Boston. 329p.
*Gosner, Kenneth L 1971. A Guide to the
Identification of Marine and Estuarine Inverte-
brates: Cape Hatteras to the Bay of Fundy. John
Wiley & Sons, Inc. New York. 693p.
Gray, I.E., Maureen E. Downey and M. J.
Cerame-Vivas. 1968. Sea Stars of North Caro-
lina. Fishery Bulletin. 67 (1): 127-163.
Hartman, Olga. 1945. Marine Annelids of
North Carolina. Duke University Marine Station
Bulletin. 2: 53p.
Hiltunen, Jarl K. and Donald J. Leimm,
1980. A Guide to the Naididae (Annelida: Clitel-
lata: Oligochaeta) of North America. U.S. Envi-
ronmental Protection Agency Ohio.
Holme, N. A. and A. D. McIntyre, eds.
1984. Methods for the Study of Marine Benthos.
Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford. 387p.
Holthuis, L. B. 1955. The Recent Genera
of the Caridean and Stenopodidean Shrimps
(Class Crustacea, Order Decapoda. Supersection
Natantia) with Keys for Determination. Rijks-
nuseum van Naturrlijke Historie. Netherlands.
Kaplan, Eugene H. 1982. A Field Guide
to Coral Reefs of the Caribbean and Florida includ-
ing Bermuda and the Bahamas. Houghton Mifflin
Company, Boston. 289p.
Kaplan, Eugene H. 1988. A Field Guide to
Southeastern and Caribbean Seashores: Cope Hat-
teras to the Gulf Coast. Florida and the Caribbean.
Petersen Field Guide Series; Houghton Mifflin
Company, Boston. 425p.
Keer, George A. 1976. Indian River
Coastal Zone Study. Compass Publications. Ar-
lington Va. (Prepared by T. Wolcott). 105p.
Kirkland, Patricia A. 1981. Identification
Manual for Common Estuarine Invertebrates of
the Little Jetties St. Johns River. Marine Science
Education Center, Mayport, Florida. 19p.

Klemm, Donald J. 1982. Leeches (Anne-
lida: Hirudinea) of North America. U.S. Environ-
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Kramp, P. L 1959. The Hydromedusae of
the Atlantic Ocean and adjacent water. Dana Rep.
46, 284p.
Larson, Ronald J. 1976. Marine Flora and
Fauna of the Northeast United d States Cnidaria:
Scyphozoa. U. S. Government Printing Office.
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tacea: Amphipodat of Western North Atlantic. U.
S. National Museum Bulletin 278 147p.
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Nemerteans from Marine and Estuarine Waters of
Virginia. The Journal of the Mitchell Society.
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Flora and Fauna of the Northeastern United States:
Pvynogonida. NOAA Technical Report NWFS
CIRC 386 12p.
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Marine Invertebrates of Beaufort, North Carolina.
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the Northwestern Atlantic Ocean. (Crustacea: De-

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branchs from American Atlantic Warm Waters.
Bulletin of Marine Science of the Gulf and Carih-

bean. 10(2): 129- 203.
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Pawson, David L 1977. Marine Flora and
Fauna of the Northeastern United States. Echino-
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Chapter 7

Sampling And Studying Fish

On Artificial Reefs

by Stephen A. Bortone and
JamesA. Bohnsack

An Introduction to Fish
About 30,000 species of fish are thought to
inhabit the world today. The potential number of
species which one may encounter on a marine arti-
ficial reef is quite high. Of all the species of fish
known today, about 58% occur in the marine envi-
ronment. Of these, 40% inhabit the warm, shallow
continental shelves, the areas where artificial reefs
are usually located. Fish have existed on earth for
about 600 million years and in that time have
evolved and adapted into a wide variety of forms
specialized for a wide variety of habitats. Most liv-
ing fish are boney fish but a number of jawless (ag-
nathous; e.g., lampreys and hagfish) and
cartilaginous (boneless) fish (sharks, skates, and
rays) are also known.
Fish are aquatic, cold-blooded vertebrates
with gills and fins. They occur in fresh-, brackish-,
and saltwater and individuals of some species can
survive in waters below freezing in the Antarctic
Ocean while others have been found in warm
water springs hotter than 1040 F (400 C). In addi-
tion, they have been recorded in mountainous areas
at altitudes as high as 3.1 miles (5 km) and to
depths of 6.8 miles (11 km) in the oceanic
Fish occur in a wide size range. Adult fish
can be as small as 5/8 of an inch long (15 mm; the
dwarf pygmy goby) and as large as 69 feet (21 m;
the whale shark). All fish start out either as an ex-
ternally or internally fertilized egg. Most eggs re-
leased into the water are externally fertilized and
become either free living (pelagic) or attached to
something (demersal) until hatching into a larvae
stage. After a few weeks, the free swimming lar-
vae often transform into juveniles which may re-
semble adults except for color and minor
differences in shape. Eggs for many species do not
undergo external development. They remain in-
side the body of the female where they are fertil-
ized, nurtured, protected, and born resembling
small adults.

Reasons and Objectives for
Studying Artificial Reef Fish
There are many important reasons for study-
ing the fish which live on artificial reefs. Many
study reef fish simply because they are fascinat-
ing. It is no wonder that aquarium keeping is one
of the most popular hobbies in the world today.
Artificial reefs serve to enhance fishing and may
increase fish abundance in local areas. By study-
ing how the fish are associated with artificial
reefs, we can discover what features, factors, or at-
tributes of reefs help contribute to their potential
effectiveness. We can assess the relative fitness or
condition of the area, by observing an artificial
reef for the kinds of fish, their numbers, and their
condition. Even minor changes in environment
may lead to noticeable dramatic changes in the
composition of a fish community, since fish re-
spond to changes in environmental conditions in
the ocean. A data base of information collected
for over a period of time on a fish community will
permit us to detect the effects of environmental
changes caused by naturally or human-induced ac-
The three most common goals of sampling
studies on artificial reef fish populations are to:
1) monitor the reef fish community composi-
tion over time;
2) compare the fish populations between arti-
ficial and natural reefs;
3) evaluate various reef construction meth-
ods, materials and configurations, for
the desired effect.
These studies can target a specific group
such as a commercially important species or they
can treat all observable species.
Several different kinds of data may be gath-
ered to accomplish the above goals. Comparisons
can be made within and between artificial reefs us-
ing a cumulative species list. This entails main-
taining a list of species observed during each dive
or survey on that site. An improvement on the spe-

cies list data would be to include some ESTI-
may be done subjectively (i.e., by using words
like: abundant, common, few, rare, etc.) or objec-
tively by including some method of quantification
by counting. Improvements on a relative estimate
of species' abundance would be to determine as ac-
curately as possible the ABSOLUTE ABUN-
DANCE which could in turn be related to species
density. A further improvement of the data may
be made by obtaining not only an estimate of num-
bers but also of the sizes of individuals present.
The methods designed to obtain these data will be
discussed later.
Notes on the condition of individual fishes
can be used to assess and determine the differ-
ences, similarities, or changes that may have taken
place on a particular reef or between several artifi-
cial reefs. These data could include notes on the
health of individual species, such as, the presence
of open sores or wounds on their bodies, the num-
ber and types of parasites from specimens, and the
general overall behavior of the fish. In short, just
about any attribute of fish or their community can
be recorded, monitored and analyzed to assess the
differences and similarities of fish communities on
various artificial reefs.

Problems Associated with
Assessing Fish
On Artificial Reefs
A discussion of the problems associated
with the assessment process is essential in order to
become aware of the limitations of particular meth-
ods and to correctly interpret and evaluate the
data. These problems can be found at several lev-
1) problems involving the fish;
2) problems involving the habitat;
3) problems involving the observer that can
be overcome; and
4) problems that cannot be overcome.
Fish all move to some degree. Some move-
ments are relatively obvious such as those per-
formed by: pelagic (free swimming) species,
which form schools; or by those that shift or
change position frequently. However, even those
species which are sedentary (bottom dwelling and
lethargic) move as well. Fish may also come to-
gether to form clumps, schools, or aggregations,
which may themselves move. These clumps, ag-
gregations, or "patches" of fish may result from
one or more factors. Included among those are
random chance, where no factor causes the aggre-
gation. Most groupings, however, occur for one or
more reasons. Many species congregate or dis-

perse over an area because of changing require-
ments in their natural life history (i.e., way of life).
For example, aggregations can form for reproduc-
tion, feeding or predator avoidance.
Fish may form loose aggregations or schools
that can be very well ordered. Schools can be com-
posed of one or several different species, and this
can complicate underwater identification. Many
fish have a particular habitat preference. For exam-
ple, certain species are always found on the under-
side of a structure, and thus, may be abundant only
where the reef has many overhanging features
(such as a shipwreck having many exposed decks)
or even absent from reefs without this type of
cover (such as a barge with the hull intact).
Some species show very obvious patterns of
daily activity which affect their apparent abun-
dance. Day, night, and crepuscular (dusk and
dawn) activity patterns in various species can se-
verely affect our ability to observe the fish commu-
nity on a reef. This must be considered in the
sampling strategy. Some night-active (nocturnal)
species, although common on an artificial reef,
may seem absent because individuals are "resting"
in crevices out of view of the daytime observer.
Changes or differences in water conditions
can also influence the presence or relative abun-
dance of fish species on artificial reefs. Lunar, so-
lar, and other tidal factors may greatly influence
current flow which, in turn, affects the dispersal
and aggregation potential of fishes, especially on
the shallow, inshore reefs, and around estuaries or
entrances to bays and harbors. In some areas even
minor tidal changes may produce extremely strong
bottom currents, which may alter the turbidity
(water clarity), temperature, and salinity. These
changes can affect a species' chances of being seen
since they may influence them to move from one
place to another. This movement will, of course,
affect the observed composition of a community as-
sociated with a given reef. The accuracy and con-
sistency of underwater visual assessment
techniques are also greatly affected by water clar-
ity (turbidity), which impacts the effectiveness of
each method as we will see later. When water clar-
ity, and consequently visibility is reduced, the ef-
fective volume or area observed is reduced.
Therefore, if one makes a visual assessment when
the underwater visibility is 50 feet and then makes
another assessment in the same place at another
time when the visibility has been reduced to 10
feet, the actual volume of water observed has been
drastically reduced. Depending on the method cho-
sen, water clarity can have rather severe effects on
the repeatability and subsequently, the comparabil-
ity of the study.
Most of the sampling methods divers employ
in studying artificial reefs involve some type of vis-
ual sampling. Behavior, color, and morphological

(shape and size) differences among species can in-
fluence visual detectability. Large fish are usually
more noticeable than small fish; and brightly col-
ored, actively swimming fish are more noticeable
than sedentary or cryptically (camouflaged) col-
ored species. Secretive species, even when
brightly colored, may be missed because they are
hidden from the field of vision. Schooling species
present their own sampling problems because of
the geometry, size, and species composition of the
school One study has shown that divers consis-
tently overestimate abundance of fish in a small
school and typically underestimate abundance in
large schools (Klima and Wickham, 1971).
Human activities can also influence a fish
community. Continual harvesting by both com-
mercial and recreational fishermen (this includes
hook-and-line as well as spear fishing) can very
quickly alter the community composition, espe-
cially on a small reef. This may occur in selective
removal of all larger food fish or by the removal of
only one or two of the preferred food fish. This re-
moval can have indirect effects. For example, if a
valuable food fish is removed from a reef by over-
fishing, it may be replaced by another perhaps less
desirable fish, which could now exist on the reef
because of reduced competition. Studies have
shown that the faunal composition of a community
shifts dramatically when the major predators are
no longer present.

Collecting Data
On Artificial Reefs
Physical Environment
The physical data or information describing
the structure and environmental conditions associ-
ated with an artificial reef can be just as important
as the data on the fish community itself. Physical
data provide a basis to fully evaluate an artificial
reef and establish its effectiveness or compare that
to itself or another reef. Data are needed to help
determine what factor or factors may be associated
with, or responsible for, the differences in the fish
communities. This is possible only through a care-
ful examination and comparison of both the physi-
cal and biological data which will then allow us to
understand or predict fish community structure.
Appendix J provides the minimal types of
physical data which should be recorded during any
assessment of the fish community on an artificial
reef. The reader should refer to the other chapters
in this handbook, specifically, "Chapter 4, Oceano-
graphic Data Collection and Reef Mapping" and
"Chapter 5, Site Selection and Evaluation by Div-
ing" for specific methods of properly obtaining
physical data.

Fish and Fauna Data
Perhaps the most important aspect of any
study assessing the fish on artificial reefs is that
the species' identifications must be accurate. reli-
able. and verifiable. The very basis for compari-
sons and evaluations is based on correct species
identification. With a little training, practice, pa-
tience, and care, anyone can accurately identify
most of the species encountered on artificial reefs
in the coastal southeastern waters of the United
States, especially in water shallower than 130 feet.

Probably more problems, misinformation, and just
plain bad data have resulted because of the use of
local names. An example from the northern Gulf
of Mexico illustrates this point rather well. Off
Pensacola there occurs a species of grouper scien-
tifically called Mycteroperca microlepis (note: sci-
entific names for organisms are usually underlined
or printed in italics). Its official and correct com-
mon name is the gag grouper. Unfortunately local
fishermen refer to it as the black grouper. This in
itself is not a major problem, except that off south-
ern Florida there is another species of grouper
whose official common name is the black grouper,
Mycteroperca bonaci. This situation actually oc-
curs very frequently. The result is that anyone not
familiar with local common names will have great
difficulty using data from a survey made in an-
other area when local common names have been
used. If data between two areas are compared,
there would be a very real possibility of making
false conclusions on the comparative abundance of
two species, thought to be the same, but which are
in reality quite different.
The American Fisheries Society has set
standard common names for fishes in North Amer-
ica. This has resulted in a publication:
A List of Common and Scientific Names of
Fishes from the United States and Canada", 1980,
C.R. Robbins et al., available from the American
Fisheries Society, 5410 Grosvenor Lane, Be-
thesda, Maryland, as Special Publication Number
12 ($10 paperback or $15 hardbound as of January
Most books, handbooks, and texts for identi-
fication of fishes use the common names as
adopted and established by this American Fisher-
ies Society publication.
One way to ensure that the fish are accu-
rately identified, is to establish a voucher or refer-
ence collection of accurately identified and labeled
fishes representing those species that are usually
observed on the artificial reefs being studied. By a
voucher collection we mean that at least one or

more individuals (some males, females, and juve-
niles) should be collected, properly preserved,
identified, labeled, and then saved for reference.
The voucher collection can be used to train divers
or serve as a kind of review for key characteristics
that will aid them in fish identification. It will also
aid in identifying observed fish suspected as being
unusual or different. A correct fish identification
can be assured by an observer who has taken the
time and made the effort to become familiar with
the one or two key or main anatomical features
which aid in correctly determining a species' iden-
tity. Familiarity with the specimens in a voucher
collection along with a knowledge of the descrip-
tions and illustrations in various field identifica-
tion books of fishes are important in this regard.
Photographs and videotapes taken at study sites
can be valuable because they show colors and pat-
terns which may fade in preserved specimens.

Fish Collection
Collecting techniques used to make voucher
collections are varied and no one single technique
is effective on all species. Sometimes special tech-
niques may have to be developed in order to obtain
an especially difficult to catch species. Before us-
ing any technique, however, check local regula-
Hook-and-line fishing is good for collecting
most of the commercially and recreationally impor-
tant fish species associated with artificial reefs.
Using smaller hooks and/or special baits may help
in collecting species not normally collected by
usual fishing methods. Sometimes divers can actu-
ally use the hook-and-line method underwater to
obtain certain fishes needed for the voucher collec-
tion or to verify a sight identification.
Baited fish traps are also useful in obtaining
specimens but may require special care and ex-
pense on the part of the user. Some divers use a
baited, large clear glass jar. Many small reef fish,
such as wrasses and damsel fish, will venture in-
side the jar to obtain the bait even in the presence
of a diver. Once the fish is inside a diver merely
covers the mouth of the jar to trap the specimen.
Hand held nets or dip nets can be used to ob-
tain smaller species such as gobies, blennies, and
juveniles of larger species, such as snapper, grou-
per, grunts, and porgies. One technique found use-
ful when using a hand net (1/4 or 3/8 inch mesh is
good for most purposes) is to chase the fish into a
corer or crevice, place the net over the entrance
and use the other hand to force the fish out of its
hiding place into the net. It is often useful then to
transfer the fish to a holding bag. The holding bag
can be constructed of scrap 1/4 or 3/8 inch nylon
net material with a drawstring, or purchased from

most dive shops under the colloquial name of
Cast nets of various diameters and mesh
sizes can be used by divers in collecting fishes. A
diver merely swims to a position above a speci-
men or even a small school of fish and drops the
parachute-like net over them. The lead or bottom
line conforms to the substrate and blocks the es-
cape of the fish in all directions. Once entrapped,
the fish is forced against the netting material
where it can be held before transfer to a holding
bag. A piece of 1/4 or 3/8 inch mesh nylon net-
ting cut in a circle with a diameter of 3 feet and
weighted with a piece of chain or some lead
weights along the perimeter can serve as a mini-
ature cast net. This net is especially useful for col-
lecting smaller fishes. It is easy to make, easy to
use, inexpensive, and effective.
A slurp gun, which is simply a large bore di-
ameter clear plastic tube fitted with a plunger, can
also be useful when capturing small fishes around
artificial reefs. When operated, the plunger acts to
create a vacuum in the tube and the fish is literally
sucked in. The tube entrance must quickly be
blocked to prevent escape. Many fishes tend to
swim up-current. With this in mind, one can force
water out of the tube and cause a fish to swim "up-
current" into the mouth of the slurp gun where
they can then be more easily "slurped". Much
practice and patience is needed to be truly effec-
tive with a slurp gun.
Spear fishing has been, and will continue to
be, one of the most popular and effective ways of
capturing fishes on artificial reefs. Spear fishing
can be used to obtain specimens but care must be
taken not to excessively damage the fish. Many
anatomical features of fish, especially those about
the head area, are important for accurate identifica-
tion. Obviously, smaller fish are the most suscep-
tible to damage from spear fishing, especially if a
large spearhead armed with a double or single
barb, is used. An Australian (three-pronged, pyra-
mid pattern) spearhead minimizes damage and is
especially effective on smaller fish down the 3 or
4 inches in length. Sling-type spears may also be
more useful to divers when trying to capture small
specimens under turbid conditions.
Care should always be taken with speared
fish because the blood from the speared fish may
attract sharks. This problem can be relieved some-
what by quickly removing the fish from the water
and by conducting the spear fishing at the end of
the visual census period. Every effort should be
made to keep fish slime and odors off the boat
deck and off the divers. Hook-and-line fishing
should be conducted as a last order of business in
an area also. Taking these minimal precautions
should reduce the chances of having a survey bi-

ased, interrupted or terminated by an unwanted
hungry guest.
Trawls and other commercial fishing gear
may prove useful in obtaining voucher specimens.
Although commercial gear is generally not used
directly in an area where an artificial reef is lo-
cated, it can be extremely effective in sampling
the adjacent fish fauna. Gill nets set over an artifi-
cial reef are useful for obtaining pelagic or free
swimming fish. This type of gear is generally
more effective in turbid water. Again, check local
regulations regarding the use of any commercial
fishing gear.
Photographic techniques using still photog-
raphy, motion pictures, or video tapes (especially
in color) are very good ways to "capture" a speci-
men. While it certainly is preferable to have a
specimen "in hand" when trying to establish its
correct identity, the next best thing would be to
have a good clear photograph or motion picture.
It would also be a good idea to have a picture of a
living or freshly collected specimen'to be used in
conjunction with the actual specimen when trying
to identify it. Live color characters are often im-
portant for identifying many fish species. We
have avoided suggesting collecting methods
which employ chemicals such as rotenone or ex-
plosives such as dynamite. While under certain
conditions and with expert care, these can be effec-
tive in obtaining specimens, the obviously nega-
tive features preclude their use by most
non-professionals. Their use requires proper train-
ing and legal permits.
There are few methods which can be used to
capture fish on artificial reefs. Remember that in-
genuity often prevails over frustrating attempts to
employ "standard" techniques to capture particu-
larly elusive specimens. The important thing is to
collect a voucher specimen because without it
there may be a question or doubt raised about a
fish's correct identity.

Specimen Preservation
Once a fish has been collected, it should be
photographed before color loss then care taken to
permanently preserve it as a voucher specimen for
reference and identification purposes. The pre-
ferred method for handling fish is to place them in
a container of 10 percent Formalin as soon as pos-
sible then later preserving in alcohol. Formalin is
prepared by diluting concentrated formaldehyde
(obtainable at most pharmacies) with nine parts
water (preferably with water from where the speci-
men was collected). Caution should be exercised
when handling this chemical as it can burn or irri-
tate the skin and is a possible carcinogen. Special
precaution should be taken to avoid breathing, in-
gesting, or getting Formalin in open cuts, sores, or

eyes. If this should happen, immediately flush the
affected area with clean water and consult a physi-
If possible, fish should be alive when placed
in the Formalin. If this is not possible, the fish
should be quick-frozen upon capture and allowed
to thaw in the Formalin. Less preferably, captured
fish should be placed on ice and then put directly
in the Formalin.
If specimens are larger than 4 or 5 inches, it
will be necessary to make a small (1 or 2 inch) slit
into the body cavity on the right side of the fishes'
bellies (by tradition the left side should remain in-
tact unless it is already damaged). This will allow
the fixative, in this case Formalin, to more quickly
penetrate the body cavity to insure proper fixation
(fixation merely means making the tissues less vul-
nerable to bacterial decay) of the internal organs.
On very large specimens (over 2 feet long) it is ad-
visable to make a longer cut into the body cavity.
Do not force the fish into its container so
that it becomes distorted and twisted. The fish
should not be packed tightly in the container with
very little Formalin fluid since plenty of fixative
must surround each specimen to reduce bacterial
Fish should be kept in Formalin for at least 3
days but no longer than a week. Then they should
be transferred to a STORAGE FLUID OR PRE-
SERVATIVE, which is usually made of alcohol.
While Formalin is very good for fixing (killing)
cells and stopping bacterial decay, it has a ten-
dency to cause tissues to become soft with time,
and the fumes can be irritating to the eyes, making
handling quite unpleasant. The best and easiest
way to transfer specimens from the fixation fluid
to the preservative fluid isopropyll or rubbing alco-
hol) is simply to pour off the Formalin in a well
ventilated area, and replace it with the preserv-
ative. Isopropyl alcohol, available at most pharma-
cies, when diluted with an equal amount of tap
water, becomes 50 percent isopropyl alcohol and
makes a good and inexpensive preservative. It
should be noted that the Formalin may be reused a
couple of times, then disposed of as a hazardous
The containers that specimens are kept in are
also important. Clean glass jars should be used.
For aesthetic purposes, the jars should be of the
same type and generally plain in design. The jar
lids should be plastic (either Bakelite or polypro-
pylene). Metal lids should not be used for they
quickly corrode, especially in the presence of For-
malin. Good quality glass jars can be obtained
from bottle and jar distributing companies. A par-
tial list of North American bottle distributors, pre-
pared by the American Society of Ichthyologists
and Herpetologists, is found in Appendix K.

Larger voucher specimens (too large for gal-
lon jars) may be maintained in tight sealing plastic
buckets. Wooden boxes or containers lined with fi-
ber glass resin and filled with preservative can also
be used as holding or storage tanks when preserv-
ing larger specimens.
Whether the specimens are placed in tight
sealing glass jars or wooden boxes with loose fit-
ting tops, it will be necessary to periodically in-
spect the containers. Because the preservation
fluids can evaporate rather quickly, fluid levels
should be checked at least twice a year. If the
amount of evaporation has not been too severe,
merely "topping off" the containers with additional
preservative should suffice. Extreme loss of fluids
indicates a leak somewhere. To insure that the jars
do not undergo excessive evaporation, it would be
a good idea to keep them in an air conditioned
It is important to properly label all speci-
mens with the appropriate field location and collec-
tion data. Labels should always be placed in the
jar with the specimen and not on the outside of the
container. Below are two typical labels which
should serve as examples for size, format, and the
minimal information necessary to insure proper
identification of specimens: Figure 7-1.
Plastic papers, such as an underwater paper
called Plaspyrus (available from Bel-Art Products,
Pequannock, New Jersey) may be useful for mak-
ing labels, but this paper may not accept indelible
writing inks as will the rag paper. One advantage
of this plastic paper is that it has other uses in our
artificial reef assessments. A technical writing or
drawing pen should be used with such inks as ordi-
nary fountain pens will clog rather easily. Possible
alternatives might be to use waterproof "laundry"
pens or even No. 2 lead pencils. One should never
attempt to use felt-tip or standard ball point pens.
The ink will inevitably dissolve and a blank label
(and missing data) will result.

Figure 7.1

Specimen Labels
Preprinted labels with fancy lettering is nice
but not essential. it is only important that
the information be recorded and legible. The
paper that the labels are made from is impor-
tant, since normal paper deteriorates rapidly
in alcohol or Formalin. The "best" paper for
labeling is 100 percent cotton rag paper. The
Byron Weston Co., of Dalton Mass., pro-
duces a paper called Byron Weston Resistall
Linen Record, which is very good for this pur-
pose. In the southeast this paper may be obt-
sained from the following dealers:
Strickland paper Co., Mobile, Ala.
Dillard Paper Co., Atlanta, Ga.
Knight Paper Co., Atlanta, Ga.

Species Identification
Any research concerned with surveying fish
must first begin by identifying and learning the
species likely to be encountered in the study area
while still on dry land. Our aim is to be able to
visually identify fish species underwater with the
aid of identification guides and voucher collec-
H. D. Hoese and R. H. Moore's book enti-
tled "Fishes of the Gulf of Mexico" (1977, Texas
A and M University Press, College Station, Texas)
is an excellent book introducing anyone to the
methods of identifying fish. It includes a good
general account of each species and is comprehen-
sive enough in its scope to include most, if not all
species one might encounter on an artificial reef in
Florida's inshore as well as offshore waters.
Some other books that are useful are: "A Field
Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes of North America"
by C.R. Robins, G.C. Ray & J. Douglas (1986
Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston), "Caribbean
Reef Fishes" by J. E. Randall (1963, TFH Publica-
tions, Jersey City, New Jersey); "Guide to the Cor-
als and Fishes of Florida, the Bahamas, and the
Caribbean" by Iday and Jerry Greenberg (Sea-
hawk Press, Miami, Florida); "Fishwatchers Guide
to West Atlantic Coral Reefs" by C. G. Chaplin
(1972, Livingston Publishing Co., Wynnewood,
Pennsylvania); and "Hand Guide to the Reef
Fishes of the Caribbean" by F. J. Stokes (1980,
Lippencott & Crowell, New York).
These books are narrower in scope, how-
ever, and tend to include only the more popular
and colorful fishes found on natural coral reefs.
They might suffice for studies in the southern por-
tion of Florida, but probably will prove somewhat
inadequate in areas north of Tampa and Fort Lau-
derdale. They will supplement and complement
each other and together all the above books will
provide a good literature basis from which to be-
gin a study.


Cat. .. C.L to.
Co... Sc...____

DeTp* -T ____
Date ------ ur ____

FmUIy __________________ CL _____
C SpX.cl.
Sute CW_

Ol C.L N..
Cot. bp

Many fish have color patterns that allow
them to be identified from photographs of draw-
ings. Others do not have features which make
them easily recognized. Therefore, it is important
to become familiar with the species likely to be en-
countered before making a dive to collect data.
This is done by studying the drawings and photo-
graphs in the texts, and taking the time to collect
and identify the voucher specimens.
At this point, the research diver should be
ready to enter the water and begin some actual
sight identifications. Before an actual survey be-
gins, however, all the participants should make at
least one or two inspection dives or trial runs in
the area to do some preliminary identification.
Once in the water, a plastic writing slate or
pad of underwater writing paper to record the spe-
cies seen will be needed. Special anatomical char-
acters should, of course, be noted. It is highly
probable that one might see a species that is totally
unfamiliar, but by writing down some distinguish-
ing features, confirmation of its identity is more
certain. Notes should immediately be written
down regarding the species' notable charac-
teristics, color patterns, and other features that will
make it easier to identify. Underwater color photo-
graphs (or better yet, color transparencies) will be
a great aid, especially if the specimen is suspected
as being different or unknown and cannot be cap-
tured. It is important to compare notes with fel-
low observers and just as importantly, to learn to
accept (or reject if need be) the identifications
made by others. There are ichthyologists and fish-
ery biologists at most of the universities through-
out the Southeast, who can be called upon to help
you with your identifications. We emphasize
again that while variation and inaccuracies in data
gathering on artificial reefs is inevitable, the data
base must contain accurate species identifications.
While it may not be possible to identify each indi-
vidual to the species level an alternative would be
to identify each individual at least to its correct ge-
nus or family.

Importance of Field Notes
Too many trust their memories only to learn
(or worse, never find out) that they have forgotten
some character, species, or observation critical to
a study. This happens most often when consider-
able time takes place between the dive and note
writing or data recording. Even the best of us
have problems keeping track of information when
several dives are made on the same day, or the
weather is rough and/or the excitement of the mo-
ment causes a lapse in memory. We suggest, in
addition to recording the physical data as outlined
previously, that a field notebook be used to write
down your immediate impressions and observa-

tions. A three-ring, loose-leaf notebook or a sur-
veyor's notebook will do for this and don't forget
to use waterproof ink pen or pencil when writing.
Figure 7-2 is an example of a field note
sheet preprinted with the typical data one might
want to jot down after a dive. Appendix B offers
some additional examples. (Please see Figure 7.2)
The blank space below the preprinted lines
is to record the species observed, characteristics of
the fishes which might aid in their identification
(i.e., color, size, etc.), relative abundance (rare,
common, abundant, etc.), life stage (juvenile or
adult, male or female), and any interesting behav-
ioral or ecological features.
The data most desired by scientists concern-
ing fish on artificial reefs are species composition,
relative abundance, and estimates of individual
sizes. A species listing by itself has relatively lit-
tle value. However, if this is the only kind of data
possible to collect, given the circumstances, condi-
tions, or experience of the diver group, even some
kind of comparison within and between reefs is
still possible. It is preferable to use a sampling
strategy which obtains a representative sample of
the community. These data can be used directly
as an index of relative abundance or they can be
treated mathematically to estimate total abundance
on a reef.

Figure 7.2


S. _______ __
f______w______ WM Su* W ____,____ W

CLj ______________ L ____ ______________s__ wTm_,nm


.....M ______________._______D M...._________________
tV I-" ----------------------------. --
m"" ,, ____________________________________
i-l ... _____ ___ ..____ ___.____.__________.___
C n-it _________ Tid _____ r__ utbd h _____

M 9 lo _____________ i-nWdh __________

Field Note Sheet

Beginners can start by simply identifying
and recording species of interest. Thompson and
Schmidt (1977) and Jones and Thompson (1978)
developed a method in which divers swim ran-
domly around a reef and attempt to locate and iden-
tify all possible species within a 50 minute period.
Species are given a score of 5 to 1 depending on
which respective 10 minute time interval they were
first observed. This is an excellent method for pro-
ducing a species list and for training divers on fish
Advanced divers, using methods described
below, should collect more quantitative data which
estimates abundance and even sizes. Measuring
sizes under water can be a problem because objects
appear closer (and therefore enlarged). Divers who
desire to estimate fish sizes should carry a measur-
ing device of some type. One which we prefer con-
sists of a rod approximately 3 feet long with a ruler
attached perpendicularly on the far end. This will
help avoid problems in estimating true sizes. Di-
vers should practice estimating sizes of various ob-
jects from a distance and then compare their
estimates to the measured size underwater.
Visual census data are most easily recorded
with a pencil on plasticized paper held by a clip-
board. We do not recommend using data sheets
with preprinted species' names because they tend
to bias the diver's observations and usually do not
save time. It often takes considerable time to read
and find names on a list underwater. Scientific
names can usually be abbreviated using the first
three letters of the genus and the first four letters of
the specific name (e.g., the red snapper, Luljanus
campechanus becomes "lut camp". Plastic paper
provides a convenient permanent recording me-
dium. The Plaspyrus brand paper referred to ear-
lier is good for this. Heavy rubber bands will help
in holding sheets on a clipboard. Another method
of recording data consists of using opaque (white)
sheets of plexiglas which have had their surfaces
roughened with sandpaper. These "slates" can be
reused as they can be cleaned with scouring pow-
der or sandpaper. Pencil can be used to write un-
derwater on both materials (you can even erase
underwater as well with a plain old rubber eraser).
A simple way to transcribe the data on the slate, to
paper, is by using a copy machine.

Sampling Methods
In order to properly assess fish on artificial
reefs, we must have a firm understanding of the at-
tributes and limitations of the methods we wish to
employ. Below are two methods designed to
quickly and simply visually monitor the reef fish
populations. The first method, Moving Transect
Samples, is used to sample specific species of inter-
est, such as snapper and grouper, although the
method can be used on any species or group of spe-

cies. The second method, Fixed Point Sampling,
provides an index of abundance of all observable

Moving Transect Sample
The lack of structural uniformity over space
and time on artificial reefs often makes traditional
transect sampling strategies difficult or impossible.
For this reason, we recommend using a fixed
search route or a timed search period in which all
individual fish of interest are located and counted.
In situations where the reef structure is relatively
constant, like a ship wreck, a prescribed search
route can be established. Careful attention should
be given to precisely following the same route for
each sample. The same starting and ending point
should be used. A route map should be made for
later use. Target species are recorded as they are
observed. The data can be influenced by differ-
ences in water visibility. This can be minimized
by recording only those individuals observed
within a predetermined distance. The distance cho-
sen should depend on prevailing conditions.
In complex habitats, a timed search period of
15 minutes per sample is suggested. During this
period all observed individuals of the predeter-
mined target species are recorded. Likely hiding
places for particular species can be searched. In or-
der for results to be comparable, a constant swim-
ming speed should be maintained during the
search. Swimming speed should be the slowest
speed necessary to adequately take data on the
densest concentration of the desired target species.
Distance covered can be estimated by calibrating
distance as a function of time at the established
swimming speed, although in areas with strong cur-
rents such calibration may not be effective.
Several independent, small samples are gen-
erally more desirable than one large sample. Multi-
ple samples are more desirable for statistical
treatment. Therefore, small increments of search
distance or time are recommended. More samples
can be taken in large habitats and the average or
mean values used. Buddy team members should
collect data in order to provide a variance estimate
between observers. The first sample collected on a
given day can be used for comparison purposes in
situations, where fish populations are affected by
counting, such as when individual fish are fright-
ened away from a reef by the presence of divers.

Fixed Point Sampling
This method is more suited for sampling all
species on reefs with complex or diverse communi-
ties. Studies which concentrate only on a few spe-
cies might not reveal all the information which is
biologically important. larger species are likely to
be attracted to sites because of the presence of

smaller "trashfish" or "baitfish" species. Scientists
would like to know more about the relationships
between the large and small species.
With this method, fixed points are selected
from which data on community composition are
collected. Points can be randomly selected (pro-
vided points chosen are truly random in the statisti-
cal sense) or they can be fixed at certain locations
for purposes of comparison. On a particular artifi-
cial reef, such as a wreck, sites might be chosen
which can be easily relocated, such as on the an-
chor, the fo'c'sle, or a point along the hull on the
upcurrent or downcurrent side. Permanent points
are recommended for detecting temporal (i.e., time
associated) changes and when different divers are
monitoring the same site.
At each point, both members of the buddy
team first record all species observed within a pre-
set distance of a 3600 arc during a five minute pe-
riod. This distance used should be constant. We
recommend 8 meters (about 25 feet) in areas with
prevailing clear water although shorter distances
may be used. The distance to be sampled should
be measured and marked at one point. Several
brands of fiberglass tape measures are commer-
cially available, which can be submerged in salt
water. Usually a stationary object on the bottom
will serve as a handy reference point for each sam-
Any fish that swims within the imaginary cyl-
inder extending from the bottom to the surface
within the five minute sample period is recorded.
At the end of the sample period an estimate of the
number of individuals observed for each species is
then recorded. Minimum, average, and maximum
size estimates for each species can also be re-
corded. Only a few individuals of most species ap-
pear within the sample radius during the five
minute sample so their numbers can usually be eas-
ily remembered. Individual fish which are not
likely to leave the sample radius can be counted af-
ter the five minute sample period by starting at one
point and rotating around 3600 until all the view-
able area is covered. We recommend counting
only one species at a time and working up the list
from the bottom to avoid bias caused by a ten-
dency to count each species when it is particularly
noticeable or abundant. Working systematically
back up the list reduces the chance of overlooking
a species that remains within the sample area for
only a short time can be counted as they appear
during the five minute sample period. Usually
only a few species are in this category.
When large schools of fish are present, it
might be necessary to count by 10's, 20's, 50's, or
even 100's. This method relies on detecting rela-
tive abundances so do not be concerned about ob-
taining absolute accuracy. The maximum number
of individuals seen at one time can be used for spe-

cies that continually swim through the sample area.
This procedure will reduce chances of recording
the same individuals more than once. Data on bot-
tom features within the sample radius may be re-
corded for later reference. Photographs of the site
may be helpful
Again, great care must be taken to record
and keep track of all essential information about
the dive. Otherwise the data collected will be use-
less. Copies of raw data sheets and dive log sheets
should be kept together, although later, the data
can be recopied and organized for analysis. Names
of divers, date, weather conditions, depth, name of
reef and sample locations should be recorded.
Numbering each sample is recommended. Any ad-
ditional information that can be provided should be
recorded such as visibility, sea conditions, tidal cy-
cle, cloud cover, and unusual observations.

Fish Survey Data Type
Any analysis of the data obtained in a visual
survey must be considered as to kind as well as
quality of data. The kind of data will generally be
at least one and perhaps all of the following:
1) species list;
2) qualitative species abundance;
3) relative species abundance;
4) absolute species abundance.
The appropriate ways to handle each of these
data types will be considered below. In all cases
you must compare data of the same type. For ex-
ample, it would be erroneous and misleading to
compare the seasonal changes in abundance of red
grouper at a particular artificial reef, if some of the
surveys recorded relative abundance and others
used qualitative estimates. To analyze the data in
the above example, one would have to go to the
lowest common denominator of similarity in data
type. In the above example, the relative abundance
data would have to be converted into qualitative
data to allow a meaningful analysis.

Species Lists
It is possible to compare artificial reefs
merely based on a list of species known to inhabit
them. Granted, the analysis may be crude, but
there are some things which can be said in a study
using these types of data providing one is aware of
the assumptions necessary to validate the compari-
A dive team may survey a reef and merely
note the species observed at the site at a particular
time of day or time of year. It may be possible to
use the presence/absence of certain species to gain
some insight into the nature of artificial reefs. Be-
low are some hypothetical examples of the uses

made from the kinds of information someone
might gather from a simple species list.
1) A certain species of fish may have been
absent at one time of the year and present
the remainder. This implies a seasonal
preference by the species.
2) A species may be absent at one type of
reef, yet present at another reef which is
close by but composed of a different type
of material. This implies a habitat prefer-
ence by the species.
3) Presence of a species only when another
species was absent might imply compet-
tion between the two species.
4) Higher numbers of species consistently re-
corded on one reef in comparison to others
implies that something in the nature of the
structure allows or permits this to remain
because of some factor such as size of the
reef, amount of fishing pressure, proxim-
ity to natural reefs, or some other factor
not easily recognized without further
There are several basic assumptions which
are made when comparing artificial reefs by spe-
cies lists. The first is that when a species is noted
on a particular survey, it was in fact present (again
errors in species identification can invalidate this
assumption). The second assumption is that just
because a species was not seen or recorded does
not mean that the species was truly absent from the
area. It is of course probable, although unlikely,
that after a series of surveys on a particular reef
that one might miss seeing a species when it was
actually there all along. This may happen because
of the geometric configuration of some artificial
reefs, the behavioral features of some species, also
the species' abundance, or variation between ob-
servers to see some species. It should be noted
that even though a species list really only notes the
presence of species, species abundance is impor-
tant as it is theoretically easier to miss a species
which is rare, especially if it is small and crypti-
cally colored.

Qualitative Species Abundance
Species' abundance data of this type are pre-
ferred over species lists. This is because in a com-
munity, fish are not just present on a reef, but are
also there in varying abundances. For example,
even though gray triggerfish are present on two ad-

jacent reefs, they may be vastly more numerous on
one of these structures.
Qualitative abundance data are generally re-
corded on some type of verbal or numeric scale.
A species may be said to be abundant, common,
few, rare, or given a number score for the abun-
dance assessment (e.g., 5,4,3,2,1) to signify the
verbal qualifiers above. The verbal or numerical
scales can vary of course. An extremely abundant
fish could become a perfect 10 on a 10 point scale.
It is preferable that if qualitative abundance scores
are used, that they be accompanied by some rela-
tive abundance definitions: e.g., abundant = more
than 100 individuals; common = 25 to 100 indi-
viduals; few = 5 to 24; rare = less than five.
If defined in some similar manner as above,
qualitative data can be treated as relative abun-
dance data and analyzed accordingly. The prob-
lem is that because of the wide ranges in potential
species abundance and the necessarily narrow
range of qualitative categories, a lot of useful in-
formation in our visual surveys may be lost.

Relative Species Abundance
Relative species' abundances are perhaps
the most appropriate kind of data for scientific
analysis of the fish fauna assemblages associated
with artificial reefs. Most of the data gathering
techniques outlined previously record relative spe-
cies abundance. The abundance figures for each
species are considered "relative" because they are
relative to the particular technique used. For ex-
ample, an estimate of grouper using a moving tran-
sect technique gives a number of grouper relative
to that technique and would not be comparable to
grouper abundance data gathered by a fixed point
count technique.

Absolute Abundance Data
An improvement of the relative abundance
data by species is the absolute abundance which re-
lates the relative abundance to some special pa-
rameter such as the surface area of the reef and its
value should be independent of the census
method. For all practical purposes, these type of
data will not be considered further because of the
degree of sophistication required in their collec-
tion and verification. This is because in order to
qualify as absolute abundance data, accuracy must
be achieved on all levels of data gathering. The
area of the reef must be determined with certainty
and must be accompanied with accurate and pre-
cisely collected fish faunal data. Unless extreme
care is taken to handle all possible variation in

data due to experimental design, it is best to leave
this type of data collecting to research scientists.

Data Analysis
Volunteers should rely on professional scien-
tists for data analysis. It is imperative that the vol-
unteers appreciate the need for accuracy and
consistency in their fish data collection. The major
objectives of any study that assesses or surveys the
community of fish on an artificial reef should be to
look for changes in the fish fauna abundance
and/or composition that occur within an area or to
look for differences between areas. Whatever our
objective, the most important aspect, allowing for
further analysis of the data regardless of the
method employed, is to obtain reliable data that
have been recorded and reported consistently.
This is essential, not only for the analysis of the
fish assemblage data themselves, but also for the
physical data that were recorded on each survey.
One of the outcomes of any data gathering study is
that the differences in measurements (species abun-
dances or physical features) may occur. It is im-
perative that any differences we find not be caused
by changes in the technique used to obtain the
data. For example, let us say that your dive team
wants to compare two artificial reefs. One dive
team always surveys the shallowest reef and the
other the deepest reef. In comparing the abun-
dance data you notice there are always more red
snapper at the deeper reef and more gray snapper
at the shallow reef. While the differences may be
real and reflect a natural habitat affinity for the two
species in question, we must be sure that both dive
groups conducted their surveys in the same manner
and both groups knew the differences between red
and gray snapper. Our analysis might conclude
that deeper reefs tend to have more red snapper
and shallower reefs more gray snapper. If the dif-
ferences in species abundance were caused by misi-
dentification of one group's preference to
overestimate red snapper, then our conclusions that
the depth difference between these two structures
was responsible for the species abundance differ-
ence is likely to be false.

Graphic Analysis
Graphs are probably the simplest and clear-
est way to begin an analysis of artificial reef cen-
sus data. A "first cut" of the data permits a
"picture" of the census results and may lead one to
conduct further analysis, which answer more so-
phisticated questions of the data. Graphs can be of
several types, based on the kind of examination
one would like to conduct. Perhaps the simplest
type of graph is a plot of the abundance level of a
particular species versus some feature of the physi-
cal data. This could be a plot of the total number

of species or the total number of individuals of all
species versus collection data. The relative abun-
dance or qualitative score of individuals observed
is located on the vertical axis while the date,
month, season, or time of day is located on the
horizontal axis. These plots can be represented
either as a series of points connected by a line or a
histogram (bar graph) as depicted in Figure 7-3.
It is also possible to use graphs to look for
factors which may be related to the number spe-
cies or number of individuals present. For exam-
ple, a plot of abundance of white grunts versus the
temperature recorded on a site may show a rela-
tionship like that in Figure 74.

Figure 7.3

0 I 1 I I I .I I



J F M A MU J A S O 0

Relative Abundance Data
vs. Month to Date Samples

Not carrying the analysis far enough is an-
other point to watch. In the example of a hypo-
thetical relationship between temperature and
abundance of white grunt (Figure 7-4), the tempta-
tion is to say that an increase in temperature
caused the increase in white grunt. To state this
would, however, make an assumption that tem-
perature caused the abundance levels when the
data only indicate that temperature is related to
abundance. We might just as well have argued
that white grunt abundance caused the temperature
change! While increased temperature may have
been the cause of the increased fish abundance,
our observation of the temperature-abundance rela-
tionship only allows us to infer what the cause
was. In fact, the increased abundance of the white
grunt may have resulted from an increased food
supply independent of temperature. This is a ma-
jor point and must be understood before proceed-

ing with any analysis which uses a plot of a rela-
tionship between the census data and a physical
feature of the artificial reefs.

Figure 7.4


so- *

10 5I 20 25 30

Hypothetical Relationships-It is nec-
essary to define and carry the analysis far
enough to properly define the relationship.
This hypothetical graph of temperature and
abundance of white grunt shows how incom-
plete analysis can skew results.

Prediction & Trends
Through the process of plotting census data
of fish communities (either the community as a
whole or particular target groups within the com-
munity) it may be possible to eventually predict
the status of the fish community by obtaining data
on one or a few of the environmental factors
which seem to have a relationship when we plot
the data. For example, after examiining a series of
fish census data we might conclude that more
snowy grouper occur on a reef when the tempera-
ture and depth are at a certain level
While it is doubtful that accurate prediction
of numbers of fish on a reef will always be possi-
ble using the technique above, it should be noted
that by using more sophisticated statistical analy-
ses with the same data, reasonably reliable predic-
tions could occur. Again, university or research
institution personnel should be able to aid you
with these analyses as long as the data have been
collected accurately and in a consistent manner.
Prediction in and of itself is interesting and
may be important, but a potentially more impor-
tant value of plotting data is to question the data
that do not "fit". For example, let us say that a
very strong relationship exists between the amount
of surface area of artificial reefs and the number of
species it normally has living on it, regardless of
season. If a survey done on a very large reef has
very few species on it (in other words, it doesn't

seem to have as many species as it should have),
then we are left with the interesting and often re-
warding task of asking some additional questions
such as:
1) Was it the technique?
2) Was there something about the conditions
on the day that the study was conducted
that might account for the unexpected dif-
ference (such as unusual weather or very
low visibility)?
3) Was the reef in question newly con-
structed (it may take several years for a
reef to "mature" and attain its "adult" or
climax status)?
4) Were there some other recent factors,
which weren't quite usual for the area
such as a red tide, hurricane, or intense
fishing pressure?
This searching and questioning aspect is
what science is all about. First, establish what is
out there; second, determine and document the re-
lationships among the fish and their environment;
and then try to explain why some of the data do
not fit the expected pattern of relationships.
The above mentioned way of analyzing data
allows us to look at trends among and within artifi-
cial reefs. In addition, we might also want to com-
pare the species list or relative abundance of a
particular species between two reefs. Here a nu-
merical comparison is perhaps best. For example,
reef A on a yearly basis tends to have 20 species
offish on it with a minimum of 15 and a maxi-
mum of 25 and a low average number of red snap-
per at 35 per survey. Reef B has fewer numbers
of species on an annual basis 10 (minimum = 7,
maximum = 15) but red snapper were more numer-
ous with an average of 50 per visual inspection.
Logically, we would first have to determine if the
differences in number of species of red snapper
are important or significant. Then we might try to
determine what the differences in factors or fea-
tures on the two structures are, which may have in-
fluenced the differences in the census data we
observed. Whether or not the differences are sig-
nificant is really a statistical question, which can
only be answered by someone well versed in the
subject of statistics.

Species Relationships
Another way to analyze the abundance data
of artificial reef fishes is to plot the abundance of
one species versus another. This will help deter-
mine the relationship that exists between any two
species. For example, when the abundance of
white grunts is plotted against the abundance of

black sea bass, we might see a generally positive
relationship that indicates that when there are a lot
of white grunts, there are usually a lot of black sea
bass. This might mean that the habitat features are
favorable to both species. Let us say, however,
that when we plot the abundance of white grunts
versus pinfish we find the opposite to be true.
That is, when white grunts are abundant, pinfish
are rare or few. This could mean, in addition to
the reverse for the similar habitat argument posed
previously, that perhaps there was some competi-
tion taking place between the two species and that
whenever one species becomes abundant it tends
to exclude or outcompete the other.

It is not possible to go into all the fine details
of the data analysis in this short introduction to the
subject. It is, however, important to keep in mind
some basic ideas when analyzing artificial reef fish
visual census data.
1) Make sure the methods used to gather the
data for any given analysis have been
taken with a CONSISTENT method of
2) Double check the data for accuracy and be
suspect (that doesn't mean throwing
them away) of data that do not fit your ex-
pected pattern.
3) If they don't fit, try to determine why:
a) natural phenomenon?
b) error in data recording (yes, it happens
to the best of us)?
4) Examine or inspect the data by graphi-
cally displaying them.
5) Look for relationships between commu-
nity and species abundance with other
.species or environmental factors by plot-
ting the data.
6) Try to use your graphs to help predict the
abundance of a species.
7) See if your prediction works. If it does-
n't, try to find out why.
If the species identification, abundance and
environmental data have been collected accurately
and with consistent procedures, you will have a
valuable data base from which we can all learn a

lot about the fishery potential and community dy-
namics of artificial reefs. Finally, store your data
in such a way that others, in the future, can find
and understand it. To do anything less, will render
all your work worthless.

Bohnsack, JA. 1982. Effects of piscivorous
preditor removal on coral reef community struc-
ture. pp. 258-267.In: G.M. Caillet and CA.
Simenstad. Gutshop '81: Fish Food Habits Stud-
ies. Washington Sea Grant Program. Seattle.
Chaplin, C.G. 1972. Fishwatchers Guide to
West Atlantic Coral Reefs. Livingston Publishing
Co., Wynnewood, Pennsylvania.
Greenberg, I. and J. Greenberg. 1977.
Guide to Corals and Fishes of Florida, the Baha-
mas, and the Caribbean. Seahawk Press, Miami,
Hoese, H.D. 1977. Fishes of the Gulf of
Mexico. Texas A and M University Press, College
Station, Texas.
Jones, R.S. and MJ. Thompson, 1978.
Comparison of Florida reef fish assemblages using
a rapid visual technique. Bull. Mar. Sci. 28: 159-
Klima, E.F. and DA. Wickham. 1971. At-
traction of coastal pelagic fishes with artificial
structures. Trans. Amer. Fish. Soc. 100(1): 86-99.
Randall, J.E. 1963. Caribbean Reef Fishes.
TFH Publications, Jersey City, New Jersey.
Robbins, C.R., R.M. Bailey, C.E. Bond,
J.R. Booker, EA. Lachner, R.N. Lea, and W.B.
Scott. 1980. A list of common and scientific
names of fishes from the United States and Can-
ada. 4th edAmer. Fish. Soc. Spec. Pub. No. 12,
Bethesda, Maryland.
Robbins, C.R., G.C. Ray & J. Douglass.
1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes of
North America. A Peterson Field Guide. Houghton
Mifflin Company, Boston. V-XI, 354p.
Stokes, FJ. 1980. Handguide to the coral
reef fishes of the Caribbean. Lippencott and Crow-
ell, New York.
Thompson, MJ. and T.W. Schmidt 1977.
Validation of the species/time random count tech-
nique for sampling fish assemblages at Dry Tortu-
gas. Proc. Third Interat. Coral Reef Symp. 1:

Chapter 8

Survey Techniques: Identifying

the Economic Benefits of

Artificial Reef Habitat

J. Walter Milon and
Ronald L. Schmied

Artificial reefs represent man's attempt to aug-
nment the natural productivity of the oceans.
While these structures may increase biological di-
versity and abundance, their ultimate success de-
pends on the pleasure they provide to sport
fishermen and sport divers. In the past, sportfish-
ing clubs, civic groups and local governments have
provided manpower and funds to establish reef pro-
jects. However, with increasing emphasis on fiscal
conservation, artificial reef projects are being
forced to compete with other civic and recreation
projects for public spending. As a result, it is nec-
essary to document the benefits of existing reef
structures and to determine the potential benefits
and costs of new reef projects. Neglect of eco-
nomic factors can lead to underinvestment in reef
habitat by government and/or private concerns.
This chapter provides an overview of alterna-
tive techniques to assess the economic benefits of
artificial reefs. Since artificial reef use is not con-
trolled through entrance gates or admission fees
like many other recreation facilities, it is necessary
to use survey techniques to determine usage and
the associated recreational benefits. The first sec-
tion discusses the basis of economic benefit meas-
ures for recreation activities where there are no
explicit admission or user fees, as artificial reefs.
The second section discusses three alternative
methods for estimating economic benefits: 1) com-
parative valuation, 2) travel cost valuation and 3)
contingent valuation. Examples of the survey ques-
tions that could be used for each method are pro-
vided as Appendices L & M. The third section
assesses the relative merits of alternative data col-
lection techniques for artificial reef usage surveys.
Since it is not possible to provide a complete over-
view of economic benefit and cost techniques
within the space of this handbook, the interested
reader should consult "A Handbook for Economic
Analysis of Coastal Recreation Projects" by J.W.
Milton and Grace Johns. This publication is avail-
able through the Sea Grant Extension Program,

Building 803, University of Florida, Gainesville,
Florida 32611. The cost is $2.00.

The Basis for Economic
There is a common perception that artificial
reefs are just like other marine habitats and should
be available to everyone. The difference, how-
ever, is that artificial reefs are often created at pub-
lic expense and are not a gift of nature. While
they are open and available to everyone, everyone
does not have the right to demand more artificial
reef construction. Local or state governments for
example would not be fiscally responsible to their
taxpayers if they built artificial reefs which did
not provide larger economic benefits than the
costs incurred. The analogy to a private recrea-
tion facility should be obvious. No businessman
would invest in a fishing pier unless he expected
the economic returns to be at least equal to the
We assume that artificial reefs provide an
environment in which a food chain is established
that encourages the propagation or recruitment of
socially desirable marine species. Sport fisher-
men and divers benefit from the structures be-
cause they enjoy recreational experiences that
might not otherwise be available or they would
have to travel longer distances to enjoy a compara-
ble experience. The task in identifying the bene-
fits of artificial reefs is to determine how much
the users of these facilities would be "willing to
pay" for the right to continue using an existing
reef or to use a new reef.
It is difficult to determine how much an arti-
ficial reef user would be willing to pay for the ex-
perience since it is not possible to charge an
admission fee. Therefore it is necessary to use in-
direct methods to determine how much fishermen
and divers would pay for a typical "user day".
This amount becomes the basis for establishing
the total benefits of an artificial reef. If the num-
ber of user days per fishermen/diver can be deter-
mined and the total number of users in a given

year, the total annual benefits can be established
through the formula:

For example, if the average diver were will-
ing to pay $5.00 per trip to an existing artificial
reef, the average number of trips to that reef was

four per year, and the total number of divers using
the reef during the year was 1,000, the total annual
benefits for divers would be:

$20,000 = $5.00 x 4 x 1,000

A comparable calculation for sport fisher-
men could be made to determine the total annual
benefits of the reef.
One of the difficulties in establishing these
user day values is the exact nature of the "recrea-
tion experience." Is this experience on an existing
reef or on a new reef? Is this new reef the first in
the area or do several already exist? Are the types
of experiences different on artificial reefs at differ-
ent water depths? All of these are relevant con-
cerns in establishing economic value, however,
each creates a separate research problem. In the
following discussion, we will assume that we are
trying to estimate the economic benefits for an ex-
isting artificial reef. We will look at three alterna-
tive methods (comparative, travel cost, and
contingent valuation) of establishing user day val-
ues and the total benefits for the reef. After a dis-
cussion of the three methods, we will conclude
with some suggestions for assessing the value of
new reef projects.

User Day Value Methods
Comparative Valuation Method
The comparative valuation method is per-
haps the simplest but the least precise approach.
The basic premise is that the price of a comparable
recreational experience can serve as a proxy for
the user day value of a particular recreation. For
example, in order to establish the user day value
of an artificial reef to divers, a comparative valu-
ation would use the cost of a private charter dive
trip to some local reef site. If the going rate is $15
per trip, then it would be assumed that this is the
user day value for diving experiences in the area.

The advantage of this method is that it is
quick and data are easy to collect. The disadvan-
tages are numerous. First, this approach only
measures the cost of getting to the dive site, not
the actual value of the dive experience.This is
similar to saying that the only value in going to
Disney World is the expense of getting there. Sec-
ond, there is no distinction between the quality of
the recreation experiences. An artificial reef may
be more or less enjoyable than a natural reef or
other dive site but this method cannot allow for
these differences between different destinations.
Finally, establishing a measure of the user day
value is only one part of determining the total
benefits of an artificial reef. It would still be nec-
essary to determine the number of user days per
diver and the total number of divers using the reef
during the year. The next method offers some
help on these aspects.

Travel Cost Method
The travel cost method depends on users' ex-
penditures to get to a site as a measure of their
willingness to pay for that site. This method has
been used since the 1950's to value recreation
sites for Federal projects, including the US. Army
Corps of Engineers. It can be shown by using a
simple example. Suppose that a survey procedure
has been set up so that interviews can be con-
ducted with divers at an artificial reef site. The in-
terviewing is done randomly among divers at the
site and the interviews are conducted at different
intervals during the season (year). The interview
questionnaire (see Appendix L) is designed to de-
termine the diver's place of permanent residence,
the distance traveled to the site (local marina or

Cell One Cell Two Cell Three

Total Annual Willingness to Number of User Total Number of
Benefits pay Per Day Day Per Diver Divers
This total equals Cell One times Cell Cell Two times Cell
Two Three

ramp), the number of dives made at the site per
year, the number of divers in the party and the ex-
penses incurred enroute. Suppose the following

data had been collected and broken down into
three groups on the basis of distance travelled
(travel zone).

(1) (2) (3) (4)
Average Distance Number of Divers Number of Dives at Average Expenses
Traveled from Travel Zone Site/Year Incurred
200 miles 200 1 $150
100 miles 200 2 $100
50 miles 400 4 $50

This information can now be used to deter- ship lists from local diving clubs and certification
mine economic benefits for all divers. First, it is lists from a diver certifying agency. Cross check-
necessary to estimate the total number of potential ing was used to eliminate double counting. We
reef divers in each of the travel zones. Suppose can combine this information with the survey infor-
for our example that this was done using member- mation in the following table:

(1) (2) (3) (4)
Travel Zone Total Number of Participation Total Number of
Divers in Travel Zone RateTrips Per Travel
200 miles 1,000 25% 250
100 miles 1,000 25% 500
50 miles 1,000 50%/ 2,000

The participation rate (Column [3]) is deter- Total benefits are determined by making
mined by dividing the number of divers from each two assumptions: 1) the travel costs of the divers
zone by the total number of divers sampled. The from the farthest zone measure the maximum will-
total number of trips per travel zone is determined ingness to pay for use of the site, and 2) the differ-
by multiplying the participation rate times the total ence between maximum willingness to pay and
number of divers per travel zone and then multiply- the costs incurred by divers from other travel
ing by the average number of dives at the site per zones is a measure of benefits received. Thus to-
year. tal benefits can be calculated as follows:

Travel Zone Average Benefit Per Total Number of Total AnnualBenefits
Trip by Travel Zone Trips Per Zone
200 miles $150 -$150= 0 250 0
100 miles $150 $100 = $50 500 $25,000
50 miles $150 50 = $100 2,00 $200,000

The travel cost method uses a number of sim-
plifying assumptions to determine an annual bene-
fits estimate. There are a number of alternatives
that can be used to introduce more realistic assump-
tions but these extensions are beyond the scope of
this discussion. The interested reader should con-
sult pages 36-50 of A Handbook for Economic
Analysis of Coastal Recreation Projects.

Contingent Valuation Method
One alternative to using a proxy such as
travel cost for the "willingness to pay" of divers
for an artificial reef site is to ask them directly
what value they place on the dive site. The pri-
mary advantage of this approach is that is provides
a direct estimate of benefits without the restrictive

assumptions of the travel cost model The major
shortcoming is the hypothetical nature of the ques-
tions. Respondents may not understand the ques-
tion or they may not respond seriously or the
interviewer may bias the responses by certain re-
marks or gestures. Some of these shortcomings
can be overcome by careful instructions and proper
question design.
The simplest form of the contingent valu-
ation approach is direct questioning. For example,
an interviewer at a dive site could ask divers the
following question:
"If an annual permit system was established
for diving at this site, what is the maximum
amount you would be willing to pay for this per-
The average amount that divers indicate as
their willingness to pay is a measure of the average
benefits and could be combined with other informa-
tion on the total number of divers at the site to de-
termine the total annual benefits. The main
objection to direct questioning is that it is too open-
ended to produce realistic responses. An altera-
tive is to use iterative bidding instead. The
objective is to introduce some payment vehicle
(e.g. a dive site permit or increases in fuel costs)
and then suggest dollar amounts. The respondent
will eventually converge to a final response and
this will be the willingness to pay. Let's consider
an example. The interviewer asks the following
questions and receives the answers in parentheses;
the process stops when the respondents' maximum
willingness to pay is reached.
1) If an annual permit system was estab-
lished for this reef site, would you buy a
permit if it cost $50? (No)
2) Would you buy one if the cost was $20?
3) Would you buy one if the cost was $30?
4) Would you buy one if the cost was $25?
Thus a maximum willingness to pay of $25
has been established.
It is very important that the respondent under-
stand that the purpose of the question is not to
"tax" them for diving or to actually institute a per-
mit system. This could lead to deceptive re-
sponses. An example of the type of introduction
that could be used is given in Appendix M. An-
other consideration is the starting point in the itera-
tive bidding process. In general when an
interviewer starts off with a high initial price, the
respondent will end with a higher willingness to
pay than if a lower starting point had been selected.
This problem can be avoided by randomly switch-

ing between high and low starting points (say,
$200 and $50). In addition, the interviewer should
not deliberately change the starting point because
of perceived differences in income of the respon-
Since much of the same basic information
needed for the travel cost method is also needed
for the contingent valuation method, it is useful to
combine the two in a questionnaire. In this man-
ner the annual benefits per diver can be compared
and a range of economic benefits determined.

Survey Methods
Most recreation surveys collect two types of
data: 1) basic descriptive data about frequency of
site use, purpose of trip, hometown, etc., and 2)
measures of benefits such as travel costs or will-
ingness to pay for the recreation experience. In at-
tempting diving/fishing surveys there are two
critical issues: determining how to contact divers
using the site and determining how many divers in
total are using the site. In general, a sampling pro-
cedure can be set up that uses either mail, tele-
phone, or personal interview methods to
determine the total number of divers. For exam-
ple, local dive club lists and certification lists
could be used to determine the total number of di-
vers in the immediate area that could be using the
artificial reef. Then either a mail or telephone sur-
vey of these divers could be used to determine if
they use the artificial reef. Information of type (1)
could be gathered in this manner and the total
number of users determined.
The difficulty arises in collecting informa-
tion of type (2). It is possible to use mail and tele-
phone surveys to collect this information but there
are serious questions whether these methods are
accurate for this information. Personal interviews,
preferably on site or at a local marina or boat
ramp, are preferred since they allow the inter-
viewer to correctly interpret the questions for the
respondent. The major problem with the inter-
view approach is cost. It is expensive to keep an
interviewer at a site and to repeat this process in
order to provide a sufficiently large sample. How-
ever, if accuracy is very important to the final re-
sults, the interview approach is highly

These considerations are summarized in the
following table. The ranking runs from A most
preferred to C least preferred. These rankings
are based on general results of recreation studies
for other types of facilities and the personal experi-
ences of the authors.

Survey Method
Mail Telephone Site-interview
Response Rate C B A
Purpose of Trip C B A
Expenditures A B B
Valuation questions C B A
Cost of Information A B C
(A = most preferred, C = least preferred)

The best approach to surveying reef users
for economic benefits would be to consult with
your local Sea Grant Extension Agent before you
begin any survey work. Your agent can put you in
touch with qualified university researchers who
can assist you in designing and implementing a
survey for artificial reefs in your area. This will
save you money in the long run and will assure
that you collect the right kind of information.

Ditton, R. B. et al "Predicting Marine Rec-
reational fushing from boat Characteristics and
Equipment." Transactions of the American Fisher-
ies Society, Vol. 109 (1980): 644-648.

Milton, J. W. and Johns, G. A Handbook
for Economic Analysis of Coastal Recreation Pro-
jects, Florida Sea Grant Report Number 45, Uni-
versity of Florida, Gainesville Fla. 32611
Thompson, M. E. and Roberts, K. K. "An
Empirical Application of the Contingent Valida-
tion Technique to Value Marien Recreation"
(draft), Louisiana State University, Center for
Wetland Resources, Baton Rouge, La. 70803.


Chapter 9

Disseminating Information on Reef

Research Activities

by Thomas M. Leahy

information obtained through monitoring of reefs
or other reef research activities is relatively use-
less unless it is passed on to those who need it and
those who, although not necessarily in need, are in-
terested. As a result, divers who have this informa-
tion are almost certain to be faced with
communicating it to others in one way or another.
In fact, communication of research information is a
vital element of a reef research program.
This does not mean that divers must also be
professional communicators. They do not need the
trained voice of a broadcaster or the writing skills
of a veteran newspaper feature writer, but it helps
to be able to think logically and clearly, to speak
distinctly, and to write literately-qualifications it
is assumed the divers already possess.
The purpose of this chapter, then, is not to at-
tempt to teach writing or speaking, but to discuss
the most effective channels for disseminating infor-
mation and methods for using these channels.
But first, two cautions to remember. In most
cases the divers will not be scientists. They are
trained as diver technicians, and are qualified to
gather data, to map a reef, and to report on what
has been observed. They are not qualified to inter-
pret the data and should not attempt to do so. Any
request for information which depends upon inter-
pretation of collected data should be referred to the
scientist who has been given the information.
Also, the importance of accuracy should al-
ways bekept in mind. Sometimes, despite the ut-
most care in reporting, errors will creep in. This is
evident in the fact that although newspaper report-
ers and editors are trained to provide accuracy in
published news stories, incorrect information still
continues to appear in print from time to time.

How to Use Channels of
There are a number of ways or channels of
communication available to the divers for relaying
information. The channel or channels used will de-
pend upon the type of information to be conveyed,
the audience to be reached, and the purpose to be
achieved by reporting the information.

The channels can be arbitrarily divided into
two broad categories: personal and mass media.

Personal Channels
Person-to-Person Contact on a One-to-
One Basis
This informal channel is the simplest and
most direct means for conveying information and
can also be the most effective: Immediate feed-
back from the person receiving the information is
possible, any questions can be answered on the
spot, and any misunderstanding immediately
cleared up. The disadvantage to this method of
communication is that it is feasible only when a
few people must be contacted. It is slow and time-
consuming and in many cases would not serve the
purpose intended.
No special skills or instructions apply to use
of this channel since it is something we all do
every day. It is important, however, to remember
the importance of "intelligibility" in what is com-
municated. This can be assured through good
speech characteristics and logical development of
the subject. Listening critically to one's own
speech as well as to that of other people will cre-
ate an awareness of improvements which are

Person-to-Person Contact at Group
This, too, is a relatively simple and direct
means for conveying information and if the group
is not too large it can also be very effective. As
with the one-to-one contact, immediate feedback
from the audience is possible (or, if not immedi-
ate, during question session following the formal
presentation at which time any misunderstandings
can be cleared up). More people can be reached at
one time than in the one-to-one method but it is
still much slower and reaches far fewer people
than is possible through other means.

Using this channel requires more organiza-
tion of the information to be presented so some
time must be spent in preparation in order to make
the remarks effective. In preparing the report, con-
sideration should be given to the composition of

the audience and the reaction which is expected or
desired from them. If the purpose of the presenta-
tion is to inform, then the reaction desired would
be an increased understanding on the part of the
audience. If on the other hand the purpose is to
stimulate action, then the audience must not only
be convinced of the necessity for such action but
actually persuaded to take the steps to accomplish
In relating information concerning the condi-
tion of artificial reefs or in discussing information
concerning a planned artificial reef program or any
other related information, it can be assumed that
the audience will have an interest in the subject
and therefore the speaker will not have to be par-
ticularly concerned with motivating the audience
to listen.

Presenting the Information
The size of the audience will have a definite
influence on the way in which the information is
presented. If a small group is being addressed, the
presentation may be very informal with the speaker
and audience sitting around in a random circle of
chairs and discussing the situation point by point.
If it is a much larger group, the presentation may
be more formal and with the speaker using a micro-
phone and questions being delayed until comple-
tion of the formal talk. The latter situation requires
a greater amount of preparation on the part of the
speaker to organize the material for presentation to
the larger audience.
The best rule for speaking to a group has
been used so often it is almost a cliche: Tell them
what you're going to tell them; tell them; tell them
what you told them. In other words-state your
purpose, deliver your message, and summarize it
briefly. You can't do much more than that.

Use of Slides
In making a presentation before a group of
any size it may be helpful in terms of audience un-
derstanding to have some visual materials, particu-
larly slides to accompany your talk.
If the information is such that it will be
shown a number of times to different groups, it
might be advantageous to prepare a slide/tape
show with an electronically pulsed cassette tape to
move the slides at the appropriate time. This, of
course, requires special equipment to pulse the
tape as well as projection equipment which will
permit coordination of the tape and slides.
Some guidelines for working with slides are
contained in Appendix N.

A periodic newsletter can be a very effec-
tive channel for dissemination of information to a
selected audience such as members of a local fish-
ing club, the local artificial reef committee, com-
munity officials charged with making decisions
concerning local reefs and the reef program and
other interested persons. It may be desirable to
compile information for dissemination on a regu-
lar basis (quarterly for example) to keep those in-
dividuals informed as to the progress of any
current monitoring efforts or reef research which
is planned or already underway.
Using this channel does require some effort
but the advantages over the mass media are fairly
obvious. The writer of the newsletter has com-
plete control over the information because it will
not be edited in any way. The writer and distribu-
tor also have control over who gets the informa-
tion and when the information is distributed.
None of this can be controlled if the information
is to appear in the mass media. It is true that the
newsletter has to compete for attention with all
other items in the mailbox leaving the possibility
that it might not be read, but on the other hand,
the recipient would be presumed to have an inter-
est in the information and therefore this should
not be a problem.
Using a newsletter for dissemination of in-
formation requires compiling the information,
writing it in an acceptable style, having it dupli-
cated and finally distributed.

Writing the Newsletter
Most writing in newsletters is a rather infor-
mal, chatty style of writing along the lines of a
personal letter. Some newsletters are produced
with the writer sitting down and typing out each
bit of information until finished, and then perhaps
signing his or her name. Others are set in type by
a professional typesetter, with professional design
and layout. Even when the letter is typed rather
than typeset it is generally preferable to have two
columns than to have the material typed across
the entire page. This makes the information eas-
ier to read.

Packaging the Newsletter
If the newsletter is to be an "economy
model" it can be, and should be, as neat and attrac-
tive as possible. This means a neat typing job,
adequate margins, and a clean duplicating effort.
It may have a title or a heading along with a logo
if the organization has a logo. Color can be added

by using a colored paper. If it is to be printed or
mimeographed on both sides of the paper the
weight of the paper should be heavy enough so
that there will be no "show through."
How simple or elaborate the newsletter is,
depends upon such factors as the amount of
money available to produce and distribute it, the
expertise of the person who prepares it, etc. When
a newsletter is aimed at a specific group interested
in the subject matter it is not necessary to package
it expensively to attract attention and promote
reading. Presumable the recipient will want to
read it anyway.

Distribution of the Newsletter
Distribution of the newsletter requires devel-
opment of a mailing list and keeping the list up to
date. Small mailing lists are relatively easy to han-
dle but larger lists have a greater turnover and re-
quire more effort to keep current with additions,
deletions and changes of address.
Maintenance of mailing lists may be a so-
phisticated or as simple as time and equipment per-
mit. If you have access to a computer and a
qualified computer operator the maintenance of
the mailing list can be accomplished quickly and
accurately and the computer can also be used to
sort and print mailing labels. Much more time
consuming but still satisfactory is to maintain the
list manually using a card file or other method.
Mailing labels can be typed or even written by
hand if the list is small For larger lists where this
is impractical, mailing labels may be printed on
pre-gummed labels sheets from a master list using
a xerox or similar type copier. If necessary to di-
vide your list by special audiences (divers, fisher-
men, reef supporters, community planners, etc.) to
provide flexibility in mailing certain information
to some groups but not to others, a coding system
may be improvised for filing and sorting. With a
computer, of course, this task is handled much
more quickly and efficiently than in a manual op-
Regardless of the means used to maintain
your mailing list, to be most effective it should be
surveyed periodically to determine if those receiv-
ing the newsletter want to continue to receive it
and to locate those addresses which are no longer
A newsletter requires some effort but it is
usually worthwhile and may be the most effective
communication tool available. The proof of this is
the tremendous number of newsletters issued
every week by thousands of organizations country-
wide ranging from churches and small service or-
ganizations to huge corporations and government
enterprises. In addition to the fact that they are
timely and useful, surveys have shown that many

newsletter recipients save copies of the newslet-
ters for future reference.

Mass Media Channels
The local newspaper, whether daily or
weekly, can be a very effective way of reaching a
large audience. Many counties, depending upon
the population, will have at least one daily paper
and several smaller weekly papers. All represent
a channel through which information may reach
the decision makers and other influential and inter-
ested people in the area covered by the paper.
Remember, however, that the newspaper is
a business and like any other business, it must
make money in order to keep on operating.
Whether a paper makes money depends upon its
circulation and the amount of advertising sold.
How much a paper may charge for advertising
usually depends upon the size of the circulation,
and circulation depends on news. This means sim-
ply that the editor is not interested in items which
are only self-serving pieces of information for
some group, but in items that are newsworthy and
of interest to the readers of the paper.
Remember, also, that most newspapers have
access to far more material than they can use and
therefore must be selective in what is run in the pa-
per. Thus it is extremely important that a news re-
lease, or a call to an editor or reporter suggesting
an interview be based on material that is newswor-

Using the Newspaper
There are essentially two routes to getting
material into a newspaper. Providing information
to a writer or reporter for the newspaper who then
writes the story, or preparing a press release for
submission to the newspaper.
In the first instance, the reporter might con-
tact you and request an interview for a story, or
you may have information of news value to the pa-
per and you will call a reporter, or reporters if sev-
eral papers are involved. If the request is initiated
by you it is very important that the material is
newsworthy. If not, the next time you call the re-
porters they may not respond at all.
A media contact's role is to provide accu-
rate and complete information to the reporter who
will be responsible for assembling it into a story
for publication in the newspaper. The reporter
will probably not show you the story before it is
run so it is important that information given the re-
porter be accurate. Even then, by the time the
copy is typeset and proofread there is a chance for

error to slip in. With accurate information from
the beginning this is less apt to happen.
The second possibility is for you to prepare a
press release for submission to the newspaper.
Since, as mentioned above, newspapers have more
material than they can use, it is more difficult to
place information in the paper this way, than if re-
porters for the paper wrote and submitted it, but
there will be times when you have information
which you feel is important to place in the newspa-
per but not newsworthy enough to call a reporter.
Since writing and typing a press release in final
form will take some time, a good rule of thumb to
follow is that if you have information which is
timely, which should appear in the newspaper's
next issue, call the reporter, if it is information
which lends itself to "feature" material rather than
"hard news" then you have time to write and de-
velop the press release yourself.
Getting to know the editorial staff writers in-
creases the chances of placing material in a news-
paper. A visit to the newspaper where you hope to
get publicity will be well worthwhile. On daily pa-
pers the city editor is the person who deals with lo-
cal news and is the best person to see. If the
newspaper has an outdoor editor he can also be a
valuable contact for you.

Preparing the Press Release
Appendix O, "Guidelines For Preparation of
Information For the News Media," contains infor-
mation on the actual writing of a press release, spe-
cific information on how the release should be
presented and packaged, and an example of a sam-
ple press release. Since all copy is edited before
appearing in the newspaper, a press release, if oth-
erwise interesting and newsworthy, would not be
rejected solely because it did not conform strictly
to the newspaper's style. However, preparing a
professional press release is beneficiaL

Writing occasional articles for magazines
can be a very rewarding experience. In addition to
providing information to readers of the magazine.
It may also prove to be quite profitable. Most of
the general interest magazines of years past have
ceased publication. Taking their places on the
newsstands are special interest magazines which
focus on a particular subject such as health, fash-
ion, beauty, women, family, business, computers,
diving, outdoors, fishing, boating, sailing, natural
history, science etc. The list is almost as endless
as the interests of people.
Some of the magazines which may be inter-
ested in articles concerning artificial reefs, diving
to monitor reefs and related ideas are Florida

Sportsman, Florida Fishing News, Pleasure Boat-
ing, Florida Scuba News, Sea Frontiers, Skin
Diver, National Fisherman and even larger more
general magazines with national coverage such as
Smithsonian, National Geographic, Natural His-
tory and Scientific American. However, it should
be understood that placing an article in large circu-
lation national magazines is extremely difficult. In
many cases, articles are assigned by editors to writ-
ers of known quality.
Placing stories in appropriate smaller maga-
zines with primarily local, state, or regional cover-
age, while still difficult, is easier than breaking
into the national media. But since magazines
come and go, before submitting an article, make an
on the spot assessment of just which magazines are
now on the newsstands or in the library or other-
wise available in your particular area. From the
above comments it can be seen that the magazine
market is difficult to fit into a regular channel for
dissemination of information. The exception
would be those rare cases in which a magazine
would agree to run a column by a diver/writer in
each issue. Such an opportunity would most likely
be found in the smaller, local magazines serving a
community, the state or a particular region of the
state. It would be, for all practical purposes, ex-
tremely difficult to arrange this with a national
But despite the obvious obstacles, this mar-
ket should not be neglected for it functions well as
an additional channel when there is information
which can be appropriately packaged for readers of
some particular specialized magazine.

Writing the Magazine Article
Before beginning the writing of a magazine
article you should determine the purpose of the arti-
cle and the intended audience. This will have
much to do with the way in which you prepare and
present the material in the article.
The next step will be to decide which maga-
zines may be interested in the article. Study these
magazines to see what type of articles they publish
and how the articles are written. At this point you
could begin writing the article attempting to
"slant" it to one particular magazine. It will prob-
ably save time, however, to first write to the editor
of the magazine stating that you have an idea for
an article which you believe will be of interest to
the readers of the magazine and explain briefly
what it is. If the editor does not respond favorably,
write to another editor and another until one indi-
cates an interest in the material Although writing
and sending out these query letters takes some
time, in the long run it may save a lot of writing
time because the editor who indicates interest will
most likely have certain requirements to pass on to

you such as the length of the article and how the
subject should be treated.
And remember-whenever you send in a
query letter or a completed manuscript always en-
close a stamped, self-addressed envelope for reply.
Help in writing and preparing the manu-
script in an accepted format is addresses in Appen-
dix P).

Radio has been called a very personal and in-
timate channel of communication because it can
bring the speaker right into the presence of the lis-
tener. Radio is everywhere. There is hardly a
place in the world where radio cannot be found.
In a sense, communicating through the means of
radio is much like a person-to-person contact on a
one-to-one basis or speaking in person to a group,
except that the speaker cannot see the listener audi-
ence, cannot judge the impact of what is being
said, and is not aware of any questions the listen-
ers may have. But the audience reached at one
time may be much larger. Instead of one person,
the radio broadcast may be reaching hundreds or
even thousands.
But radio has disadvantages, too. Like
newspapers, a radio station is a business and must
make a profit to stay in business. It usually has
more material than it can use so if it is to be broad-
cast, the message must be newsworthy and of in-
terest to the radio audience. Although as part of
the licensing procedure a station agrees to operate
in the public interest, convenience, and necessity
and indicates what types of public service pro-
gramming it plans to have, there is usually not
enough available air time to accommodate all of
the requests the station receives to broadcast non-
commercial, public service announcements
Another disadvantage of radio is that the
message is fleeting and appeals to only one sense--
hearing. It is spoken and then gone. If the listener
does not have the radio turned on or is momentar-
ily distracted while the message is being aired, it
is missed altogether. Usually a radio listener is do-
ing something else while listening such as driving
a car, eating, or doing some type of work. In such
cases the message cannot be readily written down
and filed away for future reference. If it cannot be
easily remembered it will probably be forgotten
very quickly. Radio, then, is good for some infor-
mation dissemination and not good for others and
is most effective when the message to be delivered
is simple, short and to the point--something that
can be remembered without being written down

Most radio programming today features a
music/news format with a five minute news seg-
ment every half hour or every hour. It is primarily
"headline" journalism. Interspersed with the mu-
sic are commercials, brief commentaries, or some-
times PSAs. But it moves at a rapid pace and in
brief segments with very little time going by with-
out returning to the music. To fit into such a for-
mat any message must be brief and to the point.
PSAs, for example, run no longer than 60 seconds
and most frequently no longer than 15 or 30 sec-
onds. There are some stations which have a talk
format with much more news and commentary in-
terviews. Such a station, offers a more flexible for-
mat and greater opportunity to participate in
longer programs.
Material which is of a broad, general interest
has a greater chance of being aired than does infor-
mation which is focused on a much narrower lis-
tening audience.

Using Radio
Radio use will probably be in one of three
ways-through brief news items on the local news,
PSAs at whatever time the station can fit them in,
or by participating in an interview or on a talk
show. Also, there is always the possibility of a
personal five-to-fifteen-minute program on a recur-
ring basis, for example once a week or once a
Getting to know the staff at the local station
or stations is a good public relations practice. De-
pending upon its size, most stations will have, at a
minimum, a station manager who is responsible
for the entire operation, a program director who is
responsible for the programming and for regular
and special broadcasts, and a news director who is
in charge of news gathering and reporting. At
smaller stations the manager may also be the pro-
gram and news director.

Being Interviewed
An interview could come about in different
ways. For example, the station might request an
interview with you if you have information which
they want to report. Or you might suggest to the
news director that you be interviewed because you
have news of local interest to their listeners. In
either case, the interview might occur in the stu-
dio, or on location where the news is happening,
or it might be a telephone interview wherein your
comments on the phone are taped for later airing.
The interviewee's function in the interview
is simply to provide the information you have in

as clear and logical a way as possible. A trained
radio voice is not necessary but speaking clearly
and distinctly is necessary. A halting monotone or
an obvious and irritating speech habit distracts the
listener, who may miss the importance of the infor-
mation being presented.
One word of caution. There is an old say-
ing, "Before opening mouth put brain in gear."
This is very good advice and you should always
think before answering a question since an experi-
enced interviewer can sometimes cause you to say
something you did not want to say or should not
say. One way to counteract this is to come to the
interview with a list of prepared questions for the
interviewer to use. He may not want to restrict the
questions to the list but you will at least have es-
tablished the general area in which you are willing
to speak.

Your Own Program
When you are the host of a program, even if
it is only five minutes long, listeners will be aware
that you are not a professional broadcaster and
will not expect perfection, but the program will be
more enjoyable for everyone concerned if you
speak as professionally as possible. Don't be
afraid to be human though! There's no need for
belabored apologies for mistakes made on the air.
In this type of situation, localize the pro-
gram as much as possible for this is important in
holding listeners. Personalize the information us-
ing names when appropriate and not making gen-
eral references.
The ratio of available time to material is
very important. It will be quite obvious to the lis-
tener if you attempt to fill some extra time by ad-
libbing. At the same time don't try to cram in too
much. The best way to insure that your material is
of the proper time length is to time it beforehand.
Adding music at the beginning and end will set
the tone and familiarize the listener with your pro-
gram as they become accustomed to hearing it
each time.

Writing For Radio
Writing for radio is a specialized kind of
writing. Sentences must be short, easily read, and
easily understood. To aid the announcer who is
reading the copy over the air, hard-to-pronounce
or often misunderstood words must be written pho-
netically or in some cases even spelled out for clar-
ity. This applies also to symbols which are
written out such as pounds, degrees, and percent,
and to numerals and sums of money which are
written out differently for easier reading. In addi-
tion, a news item submitted for broadcast over the

radio is prepared in a specific format. The same
applied to PSAs.
For these reasons it is suggested that you not
spend time in attempting to prepare news or PSAs
for a radio station as they would most likely be
completely rewritten before use anyway. A news
release that has been prepared for submission to
newspapers may also be mailed to the radio sta-
tions. If the station considers it newsworthy
enough for broadcast over the local news program,
the newscaster will rewrite it in acceptable style
for reading over the air or will call you for an inter-
PSA information should be prepared in as
brief a form as possible, typed and submitted to
the station. If the station decides to give it air
time, it will be rewritten in an acceptable form for
easier reading.
Of course, if you already have the knowl-
edge and training to prepare a news story or PSA
to be read over the radio, your chances for having
it used are increased. Taking the information to
the station and discussing it with the program di-
rector or news director is strongly recommended
and will greatly increase the possibility of the ma-
terial being broadcast

Television is the giant of communications
tools available today. It reaches millions of peo-
ple and has had more impact on social and eco-
nomic patterns in our country and throughout the
world than any other medium
The strength of television and its tremen-
dous ability to communicate is based on its unique
combination of sight, sound and motion. Since it
appeals to both the sense of hearing and sight, the
viewer is more apt to retain the message longer.
Research into using television as a teaching tool
has shown that students learn as readily by watch-
ing TV presentations as in listening to a teacher in
person. Since viewing TV requires both sight and
hearing the viewer is not apt to be engaged in any-
thing other than viewing, except perhaps eating, so
there is more of an opportunity to record a mes-
sage on paper to be remembered later.
Despite its advantages, television also has
many of the disadvantages of radio. It is a big
business and must make money to continue opera-
tion and although committed to some public serv-
ice time, that time is very limited. The message,
although appealing to two senses, is still fleeting
and must be seen and heard at the time it is aired.
As with radio, any Public Service Announcement
presented for possible use on television should be
simple, short and to the point.

There is overwhelming evidence that televi-
sion is effective. And it should certainly be consid-
ered in any type of information dissemination
program. But in doing so, the limitations must
also be taken into account and the message pack-
aged accordingly.

Preparing a Public Service
Announcement (PSA)
It may be that information concerning a com-
munity's artificial reef program will not lend itself
to presentation as a Public Service Announcement
(PSA) on television. But if a situation exists
where this appears feasible you should plan your
announcement to fit the intervals where the station
interrupts its programming for commercial mes-
sages or to identify itself. PSAs may run as long
as 60 seconds or as short as 10 seconds and are
usually of two basic types-a videotape, or for the
shorter announcement, for example 20 seconds, a
single 35mm slide with a spoken message. Re-
member, your PSA must be broadcast quality.
That means VHS or Beta tapes produced with
home video cameras are not acceptable. As a re-
suit, you'll have to obtain services of video profes-
However, since television stations vary
widely in what their public service and program
departments will accept in the way of PSAs, it is
highly recommended that you first check with the
station to determine what type of announcements
are used, and where they are inserted in the pro-
Moreover, preparation of a PSA either on
videotape or for a slide spot requires a certain
level of professional knowledge, skill and special
equipment. You will most likely need to seek help
on this. Station personnel may be able to direct
you to someone who can assist.
The recommended course of action is to
have your material in mind, whether it be for a
videotape presentation, or for a slide spot, and
then approach the public service department at the
station for recommendations on how to proceed.
For a videotape presentation, have in mind what is
to be taped and a suggested script for the spoken
part of the message. For the slide spot, have the
slide or the idea of what the slide will be and a
script of the spoken message which will accom-
pany it.

Using Commercial Television Stations
Access to a local independent or network af-
filiated commercial television station or a Public
Broadcasting System (PBS) station could be
through appearance on a local news show or pres-
entation of a 10, 20, or 30 second Public Service

Announcement. Local news programs are the
most likely outlet for information on the condition
of certain reefs and the artificial reef program in
the community. Some stations will also have
other local programming such as interviews, or
talk shows which conceivably could be devoted to
the subject of artificial reefs. These shows are usu-
ally scheduled for early morning or other off-time
viewing hours rather than for the prime evening
viewing time when regular network shows are pro-
The procedure recommended for bringing
news to the attention of radio stations is suggested
for the television stations as well. A prepared
news release for the newspapers should also be
sent to the television stations. Again, establishing
a personal identity with the station manager and/or
the news director is beneficial.
Interviews will most likely be in the studio
or onsite. Portable television cameras now permit
videotaping almost any place for instant use back
in the studio. But remember that being on televi-
sion is not the same as being on radio. You are be-
ing seen as well as heard. Concentrate on the
person doing the interviewing--not on the camera
or other distractions. Onsite there may be only
two people involved in interviewing and filming
the sequence--the person operating the camera and
the person doing the interviewing. In the studio
there will be more people--most likely a producer,
a director, a floor manager and several cameramen
depending upon the number of cameras being

Using the Local Cable TV Channel
The growth of cable TV in many communi-
ties, especially those away from larger urban ar-
eas, has opened up possibilities not available at
commercial stations. Contracts governing cable
TV companies operating in a community may
specify that at least one or more cable channels
must be available for local programming at certain
times. This provides the opportunity for local pro-
gramming and presentation of information of local
interest such as conditions of locally established
artificial reefs as determined by reef research di-
vers, etc. It is also easier to get time on the cable
channel than on the commercial television station.
The disadvantage is that the audience reached will
be smaller because programming on the local ca-
ble is often not regular programming so there may
be no preprinted program.

Appearing on Television
It is important on television as on radio to
speak as well as you can, and be natural. A good
conversational voice is best. And remember that

any unnecessary movements, gestures, facial ex-
pressions, etc. (although you think you are off
camera) may be seen and may be a distracting in-
fluence during the interview. If you are seated in
a rocking chair, for example, the temptation to
rock may be overpowering but if you persist in
rocking, it may become very disconcerting to the
viewer. If you must point to some visual aid such
as a map, for example, deliberately move slowly
so the cameraman can follow you. Fast move-
ments cannot easily be tracked.

Summing Up
Choices for dissemination of information ex-
ist, with potential audiences from 1 to a million.
Although impersonal channels newspaper, maga-
zines, radio and television--have the potential of
reaching far greater numbers, the fleeting radio or
TV spot, or the newspaper item glanced at over a
hurried cup of coffee, will not have the impact of
personal contact, either one-on-one or in a group
or contact through a direct mail newsletter. If
your objective is to try to inform as large an audi-
ence as possible with no expected reaction from

them other than that they are aware of your mes-
sage than the mass media may be a good channel
to use. If, on the other hand, you seek feedback or
need assistance from certain specific interest
groups, the personal channels are the ones which
will work best.
Audiences to be reached and messages to be
disseminated should determine the media channels

Suggested Reading
Communications Made Easy: A 4-H Guide
to Presenting Information, 4-H Youth Programs,
Cooperative Extension Service, Michigan State
Communications Handbook, 3rd Edition.
1976. American Association of Agricultural Col-
lege Editors. The Interstate Printers and Publish-
ers, Inc. Danville, Illinois.
Millward, Celia, 1983. Handbook for Writ-
ers, 2nd Edition. Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
New York, New York. i-xii, 1-523p.

Chapter 10

Training Volunteer Divers to Research

and Document Artificial Reefs

For Their Community

by Joseph G. Halusky

Artificial reef construction in Florida is largely
result of volunteer efforts. Properly trained
sport divers with training, can assist the reef build-
ers by providing feedback information about the
success or failure of their reefs so that the most ef-
fective reefs can be built for the least amount of ef-
fort and money. Volunteer divers can provide a
valuable public service by establishing their own
professionally supervised reef research, monitoring
and documentation projects and storing this infor-
mation in a publicly accessible reef data archives.
The basic philosophy and strategy for a train-
ing program is outlined so that volunteer sport di-
vers can:
1) assist reef builders with site selection;
2) design and implement their own reef docu-
mentation and monitoring projects with ad-
vice from professional scientists and assist
visiting scientists with reef research;
3) store reef information in a local public
reef data archives and specimen reference
4) communicate their observations to the reef
builders, their community, appropriate
agencies and the scientific community, in
a credible manner.
Properly trained volunteer divers can provide
the following services:
SURVEY reef sites. They can gather infor-
mation to document, evaluate and monitor man-
made reefs BEFORE and AFTER reef placement.
FIND & VERIFY the existence of old and
alleged artificial reef sites and live bottoms. Many
sites that were built prior to the use of the LORAN
C radio navigation system were frequently "lost".
The rediscovery and verification of these old reefs
would provide a significant contribution to the
knowledge about long term physical changes and
biological succession, since so many of these reefs
have been down for well over 25 years.

MONITOR existing reefs by coordinated
teams of trained divers, to regularly document
physical and biological changes over long periods
of time.
about their FINDINGS (ie. Documented Observa-
tions) about the reefs. This is accomplished
through presentations to civic organizations, legis-
lative delegations, fishery managers and sport fish-
ermen with talks illustrated by underwater
photographs, videos and maps. Such local feed-
back is essential for gaining the taxpayers' support
to encourage local and state government involve-
ment in artificial reef projects.
ENCE COLLECTION to deposit reef data, photos
and videos, physical and biological samples which
could be used by scientists, educators, citizens,
agencies and reef builders. Since properly built
reefs may last for hundreds, perhaps thousands of
years, this information would be most valuable for
future professional reef researchers who are finan-
cially unable to conduct such long-term projects or
accurately reconstruct the reef building history.

Role Of The Sea Grant
Extension Program
In Florida, some limited research in artificial
reef technology has been transferred to many reef
builders through local Extension Agents of the
Florida Sea Grant Extension Program (SGEP) and
from a Sea Grant supported, Artificial Reef Re-
source Team. Florida SGEP agents have worked
with reef builders, sportfishing clubs, county and
state government agencies and diving groups since
the mid 1970's. They have organized artificial
reef conferences, local workshops, and presented a
variety of talks to assist with the transfer of reef
technology from the scientific community. The
SGEP has published reef conference proceedings,
a comprehensive bibliography on reef research
work and fact sheets on site and materials selec-
tion, buoy construction and permit application pro-
cedures (See references for a listing of Florida Sea
Grant Reef Publications). The Sea Grant Reef Re-

source Team, has assisted the SGEP by consulting
with various reef building groups, performing pre-
liminary site surveys for new reef permit applica-
tions and assisting with reef research diver training.
The original Florida Artificial Reef Research
Diver Training Program (ARRDTP) was initiated
by the in N.E. Florida Sea Grant Extension Agent
at Daytona Beach in 1980. The resulting series of
seven workshops, spread over a seven month pe-
riod led to the model agenda that follows.
The SGEP Marine Agent plays a central, co-
ordinating role in organizing the training agenda.
While the marine agent may not necessarily dive
himself, he functions to find and schedule the
proper teaching staff in the variety of subjects cov-
ered. As a member of the Sea Grant Network, he
or she has access to many professional researchers,
many having underwater research experience, who
can provide the theoretical background necessary
to teach the program. Consequently, an essential
first step for organizing an ARRDTP begins with
identifying a marine agent who can help to organ-
ize the a special ARRDTP planning committee.

Planning Committee
When the community determines it needs an
Artificial Reef Research Diver Training Program it
should communicate with a Sea Grant Marine Ex-
tension Agent to create a special ARRDTP Plan-
ning Committee. The committee functions to
identify and link up all local program supporters as
well as nearby academic resources. A program of
this nature requires many resources as boat trans-
portation, classroom and limited laboratory space,
special data gathering equipment (which may need
to be purchased or fabricated) and a professional
certified diving instructor to serve as the course di-
vemaster. Where possible, these items or services
should be contributed, to keep costs down, and fa-
cilitate involvement and cooperation between vari-
ous community groups. If possible, the committee
should have representatives from local dive and
fishing clubs, dive shops, local government agency
involved with reef building, professional academic
researchers) and commercial fishing industry.
This assures community involvement and support
for the project from the beginning.
Once the ARRDTP Planning Committee has
identified all the needed resources, received com-
mitments from various supporters of the program,
the selection of trainees and teachers arranged, the
final agenda can be established. (Trainee selection
criteria will be discussed below).
Normally a registration fee is charged to help
defray expenses of guest speakers, purchase equip-
ment and supplies, and cover boat transportation
costs. Since many reef research jobs may not in-

volve actual diving, non-diving "auditors" may
also participate for a lesser fee. An important con-
sideration for a fee rate is that it is a measure of
the degree of commitment by the trainee for the
program. A higher fee usually results in less ab-

Student Selection
Selection and acceptance of participants in
the ARRDTP requires the organization of a small
screening committee, made up of those who are
developing and coordinating the agenda. It should
have representatives from the reef building group,
as well as leaders in the diving community, such
as dive club officials, dive shop owners or key in-
structors. The Sea Grant Extension Agent, who
may serve as the overall course director, should in-
sure that at least one representative of the scien-
tific community is involved in the selection
Selection of fully enrolled students (those
that actually dive during the training) should be
limited to between 12 and 24, depending on the
availability of qualified divemasters, instructors,
and boat support. Normally, most dive instructors
are limited by their liability insurance coverage to
having no more than eight to ten students in the
water at any one time, unless they have qualified
assistant instructors to help. The number of Audi-
tors, who do not dive, may be limited only by the
size and availability of adequate meeting facilities.
Qualifications of the fully enrolled student,
should be based on: their diver certification (at
least advanced open water); physical condition (in
compliance with minimum AAUS standards-see
Appendix A); experience in the local reef environ-
ment; maturity; interest in the subject and WIlL-
IN REEF RESEARCH after the training is over.
Of prime consideration are additional skills the
diver may have, that would make him an asset to
the reef research effort. These include such things
as underwater photography and video, computer
experience, mapping and drafting, public rela-
tions, specialized hobbies, etc. Since one premise
of the training is that the graduates will train oth-
ers, then evidence of teaching ability and leader-
ship skills should also be considered.
Obviously, great care should be given dur-
ing the selection process, if a reef research pro-
gram is to continue after the training is over.
Immature, macho-types should be avoided. Em-
phasis should be placed on solid, grass roots indi-
viduals, who have a sincere interest in supporting
their communities' reef building interests as a

The Artificial Reef Research
Diver Training Program
Model Description
The Florida Sea Grant Artificial Reef Re-
search Diver Training Program (ARRDTP) primar-
ily is a practical, hands on course in underwater
data collection and storage methods for the non-
scientist, trained experienced sport SCUBA diver.
Secondarily, it provides limited training for non-di-
vers in data handling, storage and retrieval meth-
ods and public relations.
It is a course in UNDERWATER DATA
It is NOT a diver training course.

The AIM of the ARRDTP
To train volunteer, non-scientist, SCUBA
divers and non-divers, how to OB-
STORE physical and biological informa-
tion and specimens from their commu-
nity's artificial reefs.
To gather and store artificial reef informa-
tion in such a way that it is acceptable, re-
trievable and useful to the reef builders
and the scientific community through the
establishment of a public reef data AR-
To communicate and exchange artificial
reef information with reef builders, other
reef research groups, the scientific com-
munity, government agencies and the pub-
lic. NOTE: Particular attention is given
towards cautioning ARRDTP students to
NOT interpret their observations or draw
conclusions from them, but merely report
what they observe thorough maps, photog-
raphy or quantified data summaries only.
Data interpretation falls within the realm
of the professional scientists) who advise
the reef research divers.
To encourage volunteer divers to take
leadership in designing their own reef
data gathering projects in consultation
with a professional underwater researcher.
To involve and train others to observe
and gather needed artificial reef informa-
tion. This includes developing some form
of organizational structure that would in-
sure consistency and longevity in reef
monitoring projects and the archives.
The ARRDTP is merely a simplified course
that teaches the first step in the scientific method -

MENT IT! It is specific in that it focuses on under-
water data collection methods within the limits of
sport SCUBA equipment and standard practices. It
is unique in that it concentrates on teaching volun-
teers how to design data collection under scientific
supervision, and lead and store information from
their own artificial reef documentation projects.
On completion of the training, the students are
NOT certified, for this is not a diver certification
program. Instead they receive acknowledgement
that they have received training in collecting data
in underwater environments, expedition leadership
and public relations.

ARRDTP Course Outline &
The ARRDTP course series of two to three
day workshops over a seven-month period is pre-
ferred since there are a large number of guest lec-
turers from a variety of academic and government
institutions, who are sometimes drawn from great
distances. Part of the intent of the program is to
give the participants enough time with each
speaker so that they get to know them on an infor-
mal basis to building working relationships for fu-
ture projects. This would not happen if many
guest speakers were limited to a tight and busy
agenda. The opportunity for developing an evolv-
ing leadership is another effect of the program last-
ing over several months.
Each workshop is usually made up of a one
day lecture, discussion or lab exercise followed by
a one day underwater field experience. The under-
water experience coincides with the lecture mate-
rial presented with the guest lecturer serving as the
"chief scientist" for the field exercise. Where pos-
sible, field exercises are held under conditions typi-
cal for the region where the students will be
working after the training. Near the end of the
workshop series, an intense, three-day leadership
training expedition is held, usually at some remote
marine lab. This gives the students an opportunity
to experience planning, organizing and leading the
documentation of a real reef site. The students ac-
tually plan and lead the exercise under limited su-
pervision from the staff. The last workshop is
focused on local project design, with the assistance
of a local professional scientist.

Model Arrdtp Agenda
WORKSHOP I--Orientation to Scien-
tific Diving & Diving Skills Review
Lecture Session This session introduces
the student to the basic concepts of artificial reef
technology and strategies for gathering and storing
data from an underwater environment. (Chapters 1

& 2). It makes a clear distinction between Scien-
tific Diving (Diving for Science) and Diving Tech-
nology (Science of Diving) to insure the student
understands that the workshops focus is on the for-
mer, that is, learning how to gather information un-
derwater. Discussions center around defining
what data and documentation is, specimens and la-
beling, and the function of a reef archives and ref-
erence collection. Some time is spent reviewing
safe dive procedures to be used in the course. A
standardized logbook and dive log procedure is
outlined and used to review repetitive dive proce-
dures. (See Appendix B for example log sheets).
Water Session Usually in a well control-
led, open water setting, where basic dive skills are
reviewed and final screening of fully enrolled stu-
dents is accomplished by the course divemaster
and course director. They may at this time screen
out any student who cannot demonstrate an ade-
quate and safe level of performance. A human per-
formance (compass accuracy) exercise is run to
familiarize students with scientific diving organiza-
tional procedures, the concept of task loading and
logbook and data storage methods. See Appendix
B for underwater compass skills training.

WORKSHOP H--Underwater Science
Photography and Public Relations.
Lecture Session Describes how still,
movie and video photography is used as a data
gathering tool to document artificial reefs and asso-
ciated marine life (See Chapter 3). The public rela-
tions training is focused on how non-scientist
volunteers can present their reef data to the com-
munity without discrediting themselves or their
work (See Chapter 9). Practical exercises on radio
and TV interviewing are given in which students'
interviews are recorded and critiqued.
Water Session Underwater still- and video-
photography data-gathering methods are practiced.
These exercises focus on using the camera to sys-
tematically sample some physical or biological
phenomena such as distribution of reef materials
along a transect, or the amount of substrate cov-
ered by encrusting organisms.

WORKSHOP II--Artificial Reef Site
Selection, Documentation, Mapping,
Engineering, Construction and Collect-
ing Physical Data.
Lecture Session These presentations de-
scribe how to evaluate a reef site for its suitability
for supporting reef materials on the bottom includ-
ing how to create a deployment map of reef materi-
als and how to standardize and document physical
data from a reef site. Topics include such things
as; measuring visibility, currents, water tempera-

ture, salinity, sediment characterization and sam-
pling depth, reef profile and configuration. (Chap-
ter 4).
Artificial reef construction practices are also
described. This includes materials selection, han-
dling, how to configure materials on the bottom
and what features are most desirable in the reef
structure based on the best research available
(Chapter 5).
Water Session This is a practical exercise
designed to actually document bottom conditions
on a potential reef site and develop a written re-
port about it. Also, an underwater mapping exer-
cise of an existing reef site provides the students
with at least a beginning experience for learning
how to produce greatly simplified maps of reef

WORKSHOP IV--Artificial Reef Bio-
logical Sampling and Building
a Reference Collection Emphasis on
Water Session This workshop, unlike the
others, begins with a water session. After a short
discussion on how to observe and collect biologi-
cal samples of encrusting invertebrates from a reef
structure, a collecting dive is held. Specimens
gathered are stored and used in the lecture/lab ses-
sion on the following day. A systematic photo sur-
vey method is also used to document the amount
and distribution of invertebrates on the reef.
Lecture/lab Session Students learn, in a
lab setting, how to properly preserve, quantify and
identify the encrusting invertebrates and plants
gathered from the reef on the previous day. They
learn how to catalog their specimens and develop
their own reference collection. Discussions center
on marine ecology, the succession of encusting
organisms and their relation to fishes on the reef
(Chapter 6).

WORKSHOP V-Sampling and Docu-
menting Artificial Reef Fish Popula-
Lecture Session Students learn how to
identify reef fish, and learn of their limitations for
accurately counting and identifying fish in their
natural setting. Descriptions of various fish count-
ing methods are given, with comment about their
limitations and accuracy. The volunteers are also
encouraged to survey reef fish populations, by us-
ing still photography and video methods (Chapter
Water Session Various methods (includ-
ing photo survey) for counting fish on an artificial
reef site are practiced. Some sampling of fish for

addition to the reference collection is employed in
this exercise.

WORKSHOP VI--Artificial Reef
Research Expedition Leadership
A three day practical field exercise. This
exercise should be held at a remote marine re-
search lab where students have access to wet labs,
shoreside facilities, a research vessel and dive
locker facilities to refill air cylinders and store
equipment. The exercise lasts a full 24 hours/day
for three days. Its purpose is to train students how
to plan, organize and lead their own artificial reef
documentation expedition while under limited
time pressure (Chapter 11).
Workshop begins with a briefing. The
staff appoints one student as "chief scientist" and
another as "divemaster". They are assigned to
document a known reef site which is selected by
the staff. From that moment on, the appointed stu-
dents actually lead the research expedition. The
course staff serve as consultants to the expedition.
The staff does not make decisions or otherwise in-
terfere with the expedition unless an unsafe deci-
sion is made by the students. An in-depth
debriefing is held at the end of the exercise.
This workshop is also used to encourage
leadership development within the group that will
carry on well after the training is over.

WORKSHOP VI--Planning an
Artificial Reef Documentation
Program for the Community.
Lecture Session This is the first planning
session for designing an artificial reef research
program for the volunteer divers. Workshop staff
consisting of the course director and a profes-
sional scientists) first discusses various brain-
storming and prioritizing techniques then serves
as discussion facilitators and consultants to the
dive group. Then a brainstorming session is lead
to develop a list of potential projects for the
group. Leaders from the reef construction effort,
local authorities, academic representatives and vol-
unteer divers participate in the discussions to pri-
oritize reef program information needs and design
a strategy to meet them. Individual projects are se-
lected, with project leaders appointed.

Hopefully, by this time, an organizational
structure has emerged from within the group that
will keep the volunteer group together well after
the end of the training. Leadership should be offi-

cially turned over to the one of the students as the
Reef Research Team Coordinator. (See Chapter 13
and Appendix Q for an example organizational
structure and job descriptions).
Water Session This is the first working
dive for the volunteer divers that begins their ef-
fort to document their reef sites. It is based on the
previous day's discussions and communication
with the reef builders.
On completion of the training, the partici-
pants in the ARRDTP are encouraged to design
and lead their own reef research projects, with the
assistance of some academic researcher. The pro-
fessional researchers oversee their projects to in-
sure that the data remains acceptable to the
scientific community, and that their project design
remains sound. The researcher benefits by having
access to new data that he would otherwise never
receive. The Sea Grant Extension Agent contin-
ues to serve the volunteer group as their advisor
and contact with the research community.

No additional diving skills beyond those re-
quired in a good advanced open water SCUBA
course are needed for this type of activity. How-
ever, if local reef conditions warrant that addi-
tional training is needed to safely conduct
underwater research, additional training should be
required. For example, deep diving methods or
diving in overhead environments, as may be found
in shipwreck penetration, may be essential Accu-
racy in compass work and good dive logging pro-
cedures are essential. A basic premise is that:
"Good data comes from a comfortable
Diver And Good Leadership and
"Never should safety be sacrificed for
All Dive Planning and sampling procedures
should aim towards this end. This requires a pro-
ject leader to use sound, mature judgement to
avoid unnecessary stress and physically exhaus-
tive data gathering procedures. Unnecessary time
pressure and task loading should be avoided. If it
is not, the additional stress on the diver will render
the data suspect, and it may need to be discarded.

Volunteers with proper training, can play a
vital role in the development of artificial reef tech-
nology. They can be the eyes and ears for the sci-
entific community on the leading edge of this new
form of aquaculture. As coastal fisheries habitats
become increasingly stressed by human develop-
ment, volunteer reef research divers will be

needed to provide the long term information and
sometimes unique insights necessary for the proper
assessment of artificial reefs as a fishery manage-
ment tool.

References & Suggested
FriedmAnn, Peggy. 1982. Divers Monitor
Our Artificial Reefs, Jacksonville Magazine, Vol
19, No. 4, pgs. 22-26, 93.
Friedmann, Peggy, 1985. Researching the
Reefs, Florida Sportsman, January Issue, Vol. 16,
No. 1, pgs. 12-15.
Leahy, Thomas M., 1983. Sport Divers
Monitor Artificial Reefs, Sea Grant Today, Vol.,
13, No. 1, pgs. 6-7.
Miller, James W. 1979. NOAA Diving Man-
ual: Diving for Science and Technology, 2nd Edi-
tion, U.S. Government Printing Office,
Washington DC 20402. Stock No. 003-017-00468-
Parker, Jr., R. O., R.B. Stone, C.C. Bucha-
nan & F.W. Steimle, Jr., 1974. How to Build Ma-
rine Artificial Reefs, Fishery Facts 10, Stock No.
0320-00091, Supt. of Documents, U.S. Govern-
ment Printing Office, Washington D.C. 204302, I-
IV, pgs. 1-47.
Rioux, Margaret A. 1987. Bibliography on
Diving and Diving Safety for a Scientific Diving
Program. Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Technical Report WHOI-87-29.
Seaman, Jr., William & D. Aska, 1985. The
Florida Reef Network: Strategies to Enhance User
Benefits. In Artificial Reefs Marine and Freshwa-

ter Applications Ed. by Frank M. D'Itri, Lewis
Publishers, Inc. 121 S. Main St, Chelsea, MI
48118, pgs. 545-560.

Florida Sea Grant Artificial
Reef Publications
There is a minimum fee for some publica-
tions. Contact the Florida Sea Grant College pro-
gram to order publications. Write to:
Florida Sea Grant Extension Program
Building 803
University of FLorida
Gainesville, FL 32611.

MAFS-9 Constructing an Artificial Reef
MAFS-20 Artificial Reef Site Selection
and Evaluation.
MAP-29 Artificial Fishing Reefs Materi-
als and Construction.
MAP-30 Atlas of Artificial Reefs in Flor-
ida by Don Y. Aska & Don W. Pybas.
SGEB-2 Directory of Organizations and
Persons Involved with Artificial Reefs in
Florida October 1987.
SGEB-4 Artificial Reefs: Permit Applica-
tion Guidelines.
SGR-7 Annotated Bibliography of Artifi-
cial Reef Research and Management.
SGR-41 Artificial Reefs: Conference

Chapter 11

Underwater Research Project Management

By Gregg Stanton

Successfully gathering data underwater in-
volves the coordination of several complemen-
tary components. They are:
1) Clearly defined realistic objectives;
2) Adequate support (academic, funding,
and man power) of those objectives;
3) A logistical plan to achieve those objec-
4) A measure of good fortune, and persever-
This chapter will focus on logistical plan-
ning and will assume that clearly defined objec-
tives, adequate support, and a measure of good
fortune have been provided. Also assumed is the
diving competency of the audience, whether aca-
demic or amateur, for the ocean treats us all alike
when we are within its grasp.
Research project managers are really risk
managers and may draw from the vast wealth of
this industries' models to better focus our atten-
tion. Kenneth MacCrimmon and Donald We-
hrung, in their book titled "Taking Risks",
defined risk as "the exposure to a chance of a loss"
which must be balanced against the chance of a
gain. They report that successful projects proceed
through a series of easily defined self regulating
steps to minimize loss and maximize gain. The re-
mainder of their book is devoted to explaining this
model (See Figure 11-1). This model will serve
as a guide for underwater research projects.

Perception of a Problem
Diving in support of research underwater is
troubled by perceptual distortions which not only
compromise the quality of the data collected, but
can significantly endanger the data collector.
These distortions may be brought about by factors
within the underwater environment or by compli-
cations of the research design. Both are compli-
cated by stress. These problems may cause the
observer to record information which may not rep-
resent the reality to be documented. Environ-
mental distortions are physical phenomenon, such
as reduced visibility (turbidity) or light (as in a
night dive),visual enlargement due to the refrac-
tive index of light across an air/water or salt/fresh
water interface, and the relative natureof tempera-
ture upon our body's perceptual mechanism to
name afew. Poorly defined or documented re-
search designs often createconfusion and ineffi-
ciency resulting in less than acceptable data.
Stress is a common occurrence on a research
project especially one conducted underwater. It
may come from predetermined phobias, sea sick-
ness, real or imagined lack of training, unforeseen
problems, time and support deficiencies just to
name a few. Excessive stress is not uncommon in
underwater research and is considered an underly-
ing cause for most accidents. Stress can distort
what the physical senses detect with a number of
inappropriate responses. These include perceptual
narrowing, (a concentration on details of the imme-
diate topic at the exclusion of a more endangering
greater topic), and task loading (greater expecta-
tions than are humanly possible under the circum-

Figure 11.1

stances). Both conditions compromise the quality
of the data and the safety of the data collector, for
in both cases, vital information is ignored (See fig-
ure 11.1).
Perception of a problem is the key to effec-
tive risk management of diving to support underwa-
ter research. If an individual is incapable of
detecting problems, risk management is impossible.
The challenge is to find a way that in this high-
stress environment, the risk managers can be unen-
cumbered by stressors that may adversely affect his
The most popular method to isolate the stress
from the manager is to separate the dive manage-
ment (dive master) from the science management
(chief scientist). While both individuals in this
model should be risk managers (in their own dis-
tinct areas), each now has more manageable tasks,
and when in equal authority on a project, comple-
ment each other. Often, when excessive stress com-
promises either science or safety, there is a
less-stressed manager available to respond and cor-
rect the situation. This may be in the form of sim-
plifying the tasks, aborting the dives or
restructuring the project through an evaluation of
the perceived problem.

Identify a Problem
Now we have a person who is responsible for
the diving safety and a different person responsible
for the collection of data on every dive project, and
at every dive site. When a problem is perceived,
the REACT model requires that it be evaluated,
modified and put into perspective. Once perceived
as such, problems are quickly set into two catego-
ries: those that have been reviewed before and have
policy guidance; and those that do not. This risk
management model has an adjustment section that
is important to understand. Follow the arrows up to
the right from the Evaluate box and you will reach
the Adjust box. Only with adjustments can the per-
ceived problem be changed.
Good risk management seeks adjustments by
acquiring greater Tune, Information and Control
over an event that was previouslyidentified as a
problem. This adjustment period (in the interest of
safety) must be balanced against the loss or gain of
opportunity which may result from the inevitable
delays or additional constraints.
Time often cures many problems on a pro-
ject. A good rest from an arduous project may re-
solve the excessive stress that brought on the
problem in the first place. Personal or personnel
problems are often reduced given the time and
room to be worked out. Time may bring better
weather or site conditions.
Information regarding a problem is often elu-
sive, shrouded in personal interpretations and mo-
tives. Yet, as data collectors, we are masters of the

art of information retrieval. Open discussion re-
garding a problem often brings out further informa-
tion that easily solves a problem before it becomes
a major stumbling block. Information is not with-
out cost however, in that what effort is spent col-
lecting it to resolve problems is detracted from
perhaps more productive data collections. The
search for information should therefore be focused
toward a specific objective to be effective.
Control of the project is a relative issue as
we have so many who influence our activities.
Control over the quality of research is rightly pro-
tected by the chief scientist as is control over the
safety of the diving personnel by the dive master.
Each seeks to control significant aspects of the re-
search effort. The better these two individuals un-
derstand and appreciate their responsibility (and
control), the less time it will take to dispatch prob-
Following the React model, the next stage is
choosing an action. Additional time, information
and control over the problem, have been balanced
against the risk of loss. Decisions now will in-
crease or decrease the chance of a loss regarding
the actual Event, increase or decrease the magni-
tude of the loss regarding the General Outcomes
and increase or decrease the exposure to loss re-
garding the Consequences.
Effective risk managers strive to minimize
the chance of a loss, if there is to be a loss, mini-
mize the magnitude of the loss, and if at all possi-
ble minimize the exposure (or possibility) of a loss
while maximizing opportunity. This is entirely
relative to the amount of risk an individual is will-
ing to take. Because people vary greatly as risk
takers, agencies which are responsible for underwa-
ter research have often established risk policy in
terms of acceptable and unacceptable loss. One
agency may accept a 5% incidence of decompres-
sion sickness as tolerable because they nearly al-
ways have a recompression chamber at the site and
use only young healthy men. Another agency may
accept a 0 percent incidence for the same malady
because they seldom have a chamber within 2
hours of the site and use a wide variety of people
who are often out of physical shape. The dive pro-
files of each of these agencies at the same site con-
ducting the same task will vary greatly due to
individual agency risk policies.
Success is seldom measured by the absence
of loss, but rather by the realization of opportunity.
As underwater data collectors we take risks, calcu-
lated risks which are within the agency's policy on
risk, in our quest to collect the data. Regardless of
the outcome of choice of action in the REACT
model, the results of the action must be tracked.
Only through such a continuous debriefing can re-
searchers learn from mistakes, find solutions and
improve chance of success while reducing the risk
of loss. Additional tasks to be addressed during an

underwater research project may be divided into
two separate yet overlapping areas of support: lo-
gistical support and dive stations. Dive stations are
tasks that are undertaken during dives while logisti-
cal support refers to non diving tasks performed
apart from the dives.

Logistical Areas Described in
The logistical support described below may
be combined and covered by a single individual for
small projects or expanded as the complexity of the
project expands. Due to economic and space re-
strictions on underwater research projects, the div-
ing staff often doubles up on the logistical support
when not diving. Thus the person responsible for
food may also have been diving for data on the pre-
vious shift. A project management form (found in
APPENDIX R) has been created to assist in the co-
ordination of logistical tasks and dives on an under-
water research project.

This individual is responsible for planning
the menu, cooking facilities and utensils and secur-
ing a budget. Underwater research projects often
succeed or fail based upon the abundance and qual-
ity of the food. Diving requires a high caloric in-
take and plenty of on-site nondiuretic fluids. If the
data collectors are poorly fed, the quality of the
data suffers. Again, the complexity of the project
dictates the complexity of the food task. For a sin-
gle day outing, a "bring your own lunch" policy
may suffice. A week long cruise on the state run re-
search vessel may provide a part-time cook. A
month at the Dry Tortugas may require a nondiving
full time cook. Regardless of the task, the rest of
the diving staff will be expected to pitch in with the
dishes or even cook on occasion.

A place to sleep, may be as critical as the
food. Projects which are on the road moving from
site to site will need a person who is responsible
for securing advanced lodging and other related
support. This task can be as easy as finding tents
and camp sites near the research area, to coordinat-
ing complementary accommodations at govern-
ment facilities or on board boats. Once the lodging
is secured, this individual usually is responsible for
securing payment for the services consistent with
their agency or project policy.

This task is often combined with lodging or
boats (especially small boats) in that moving peo-

ple about may share common problems with their
lodging arrangements. Agencies (or even small
groups) often require lengthy forms authorizing
travel, insurance, and fuel reimbursements. Equip-
ment requirements such as compressors, tanks,
boats and specialty research equipment will need
to be moved and stored during a project. This indi-
vidual may have tasks as simple as sizing the
trailer hitch to the boat trailer for a trip down to a
local launch, to master-minding the transport of 10
tons of supplies out to Palau, Micronisia. His
task is critical to the success of the project as lost
or late equipment often delays critical research.

Be it a small runabout on a trip down river
or a research vessel cruise to the Tortugas Islands,
a boat is one of the basic life support facilities of
the diving scientist. While the individual responsi-
ble for making boat arrangements does not need to
be a licensed captain, it should be someone with
knowledge and skills in boating. The responsibili-
ties that come with this category include: selec-
tion of boats for the research; checking out the
condition and auxiliary support of each boat; ar-
ranging for fuel, maintenance needs and other sup-
plies; training personnel in boat handling for
conditions you expect to be working in and many
other unanticipated considerations. Even if you
are working with a state research vessel, there are
tasks that must be performed which are best left to
someone not otherwise over committed, such as in-
spection of the facilities to be assured of its appro-
priate cargo area and capacity, function of the
support equipment (compressor, a chase boat etc.)
and special rules that personnel should be aware
of PRIOR to arrival.

Equipment & Air
Apart from the Chief Scientist and the Dive
Master, this individual has the greatest chance of
task loading. All of the support equipment not di-
rectly related to specialized data collection, boat-
ing, cooking or transportation must be assembled
and tested prior to departure and managed through-
out the project by this person. This includes all
the life support gear (tanks, regulators, BC, etc.),
compressors, scooters, cameras, first aid supplies,
just to name a few. Small projects may rely upon
the individuals of a project to see to their own
equipment, but the loss or failure of one regulator
may reduce the efficiency of the entire group.
More complex projects will need to subdivide this
responsibility between more people.

Safety Officer
A task that usually is covered by the Dive
Master except on very large projects. The person


responsible for safety works closely with the entire
staff. This person will set up the emergency commu-
nication and evacuation procedures, secure and man-
age the first aid kits, and be on a constant lookout
for safety problems which need to be resolved.

Principal Investigator
This individual usually is the instigator of the
research, (although that is not required) and carries
the burden of supervising the quality of the data col-
lected and providing for its security. Often, this per-
son is the central figure of the project. The Principal
Investigator acts as a coordinator for all of the other
tasks, but seldom deviating from his focus on the re-
search. He or she is responsible for developing a
clearly documented research design and related train-
ing for all to understand. This person usually con-
trols the budget, writes the proposals, and is
responsible for publishing the projects findings.

Dive Supervisor
Equal in responsibility to the Principal Investi-
gator, the Dive Supervisor works closely with pro-
ject managers to insure that the highest possible
personal safety of the research team is assured. This
individual often performs his duties as an extension
of the sponsoring agency's office of Environmental
Health and Safety or Diving Program. He or she
must be very competent in life support and com-
pressed gas technology, and underwater project risk
management. As with all the other tasks listed
above, this one will grow in complexity dependent
upon the level of diver life support technology re-
quired (SCUBA vs. mix-gas vs surface supply, etc.),
and the number of participants, location of the pro-
ject and nature of the research objectives. The Dive
Supervisor may either make personnel assignments
for the dive teams based upon the objectives pre-
sented by the Principal Investigator or simply ap-
prove those choices made by the Principal
At no time may the dive supervisor assume the
responsibility of the principal investigator or the
principal investigator assume the responsibility of
the dive supervisor.

Dive Stations Described
Once the dive flag has been hoisted, project
participants change over from their logistical sup-
port tasks and into their dive stations. These roles
may be consolidated into a few individuals depend-
ing upon the site, size and complexity of the project.
Agency safety policies usually dictate the minimal
crew size which may vary between two and three.
Be aware that if you do not adjust to the complexity
of your project by increasing the staff size or reduc-
ing the research objectives, increased stress will re-
duce the quality and quantity of the data.

By US Coast Guard rules, the Captain of a
boat is responsible for the safety of his ship and all
aboard. He or she should always be consulted
prior to the cruise for site selection and proposed
diving or other use of the facility. The Captain
should work closely with the Chief Scientist and
the Dive Master during a dive to insure that the
data is collected safely and in a reliable way. The
Captain may abort a dive, a station or a cruise if
he feels that the safety of those on board is in jeop-

Chief Scientist
This individual is responsible for managing
the collection of data in support of the research de-
sign as established by the Principal Investigator
(which could be one and the same person). Pre-
dive planning and post-dive debriefings with the
Captain and the Dive Master and the diving staff
will promote efficient data collections. The Chief
Scientist may select team members, specific col-
lecting schedules, techniques and technology
which must be approved by the Dive Master. If
the quality of the data is not acceptable, the Chief
Scientist may abort a dive, station or cruise inde-
pendent of the level of the safety. The Chief Sci-
entist may not assume the responsibilities of the
Dive Master or Dive Supervisor.

Dive Master
This person performs his duties as an exten-
sion of the Diving Supervisor (and may be one
and the same individual). The Dive Master works
closely with the Chief Scientist with considerable
pre and post-dive planning and supervision with
the diving staff. Typically the Dive Master will
set up the dive station, inspect all the life support
equipment prior to deployment, discuss specific
tasks with team members, supervises the divers,
their logs and dive schedules while in and out of
the water, coordinate with the Captain to com-
mence and terminate a dive, and supervise the
chase boat and compressor operations, just to
name a few. Divers who have problems must feel
free to discuss them with the Dive Master. This
person forms a team with the Chief Scientist. The
Divemaster may never assume the responsibilities
or role of the Chief Scientist or Principal Investiga-

Time Keeper
This is an optional task which becomes very
valuable as projects become complex. The Dive
Master quickly becomes task loaded when more
than six people are diving on a continuous sched-
ule. The Time Keeper maintains the diver logs
and schedules such that every person on the pro-

ject has an ongoing dive profile which is con-
stantly monitored. Prior to the dive the Time
Keeper will work with the diving staff to fill out
forms and log the status of the life support equip-
ment. During the dive he or she will maintain stop
watches and help with the tracking of divers in the
water. After the dive this individual will work
again with the staff to properly record data and
dive profiles.

Standby Diver
A safety system of Standby Divers is often
advisable, where an individual or two, (depending
upon the complexity of the research and hazards
of the site situation) is/are maintained at the sur-
face in a ready state should problems arise that re-
quire their assistance. They may only enter the
water at the direction of the Dive Master. No di-
vers may enter the water until the Standby
Diver(s) is (are) ready.

Boat Operator
A second safety is the chase boat, which is
often tethered behind the stem of a larger vessel
Should divers develop problems away from the
mother ship the chase boat is deployed to assist in
an emergency rather than wait until the remainder
of the diving staff can be recalled, and the anchor
pulled on the mother ship. The boat operator is re-
sponsible to check over the engine and boat, be fa-
miliar with its operation and be ready to deploy
immediately at the request of the Dive Master.
During night dives, an underwater lamp will be lo-
cated in the chase boat Under arduous conditions,

a second Standby Diver may be assigned to the
chase boat.

Team Leader
In any dive team, one member should be des-
ignated as the Team Leader, and be responsible
for the safety and efficient data collection during
the dive. This individual should be careful to un-
derstand every aspect of the research objective and
prevailingenvironmental conditions.

Individual members of the diving staff are
responsible to conduct safe diving procedures at
all times. The Diver must maintain "Emotional,
Intellectual, and Physical fitness". Should any
problems develop which would reduce the level of
fitness below acceptable limits, the Diver is re-
quired to notify the DiveMaster immediately. If
the condition is severe enough, the Dive Master
and/or Diver should elect to abort their dive.
Successful data collection underwater is the
product of hard and well thought out work, much
facilitated by good project and risk management
and a measure of good luck.

Kenneth R. MacCrimmon and Donald A.
Wehrung. 1986. Taking Risks, The Management
of Uncertainty. The Free Press Collier Macmil-
lan Publishers, London. 380 pages.

Chapter 12

Establishing An Artificial Reef

Data Archives

by Joe Halusky and
Shawn Brayton

The principal role played by volunteer reef re-
search divers is to collect and record informa-
tion about artificial reefs in their community.
Their efforts would be futile, if the information
were to become lost, destroyed, scattered or pre-
served in a fashion that only a few individuals un-
derstood or had access to. It is surprising, how
much valuable reef data has already been lost, sim-
ply because the "Reef Scrapbook" that ole Fred
kept, was lost in a fire, or ole Fred moved or died
and his widow tossed it out with all the other junk
he kept. The primary purpose for establishing a
Reef Data Archives is to insure that this will never
happen. Establishing an Archives and speciment
reference collection should be the focal point for
any volunteer reef diver organization.
The objective evaluation and monitoring of a
reef site demands that complete and accurate docu-
mentation of the reefs history and subsequent
changes exist. Minimally, this initial documenta-
tion should include:
* preliminary reports, bottom surveys and biologi-
cal observations of the site before placement;
* news clippings about the reef's construction;
* the precise reef placement location;
* lists of persons who actually observed the place-
* the exact date and time of the placement;
* a description (with photos) of the amount and
types of materials used;
* if possible, an accurate scatter map of the reef;
* follow up documents, maps, reports and photo-
graphs from those who actually observed the
reef placement should also be gathered and in-
cluded in the reef's initial documentation. Fre-
quently, magazine articles and feature news
stories about a reef placement may be delayed
by many weeks or even months. These too,
need to find their way back into the reef's initial
documentation file.
A vast amount of information is generated
by a single reef placement. Obtaining complete in-
formation becomes a formidable task. This is fur-

their complicated by the fact that many individuals
from different agencies or associations are in-
volved in such projects, each requiring or generat-
ing its own format for the information.
Regulatory agencies requiring permits, the press
wanting a story, a research scientist wanting spe-
cific types of data or the fishing club members
wanting "just the numbers" are only a few exam-
ples of the many demands which are likely to be
made from the reef's documentation.
Obviously, reef building activity does not
stop after the last material disappears below the
water's surface. The builders incur an obligation
to record their historic event for the community,
future reef builders and even academic marine re-
searchers. They may even need documentation to
resolve a future liability concern. A well main-
tained Reef Data Archives and Specimen Refer-
ence Collection should help meet this obligation.
The establishment of the Archives and Col-
lection is the most important activity of any reef
research effort! Without it, all research diving is
simply a waste of time! Consequently, the first
and key issue to be resolved by any group wishing
to begin a reef monitoring activity, is to determine
how and where an ARCHIVES is going to be es-
tablished and who will maintain it. Any reef data
handling procedures already used by those build-
ing reefs should also be determined and included
in the plans for the reef archives. Once a commit-
ment by the group is made and the necessary com-
munication with reef builders has been
established, then procedures for setting up the ar-
chives should begin.

Artificial Reef Data Archives
Archives is defined as a place where public
records and historical documents are kept. An arti-
ficial reef research archives, kept by a volunteer or-
ganization for their communities' reef placement
program is specific and limited to that need. The
archives is a depository of artificial reef data and
historical information which is gathered in one or-
ganized storage facility and maintained solely by
the appointed archivist or assistant. It should be
set up in a public facility such as a local library,
county administrators office, nearby college or uni-
versity, extension office or even a willing public
school. A less desirable, but acceptable location
would be with the organization who is responsible

for maintaining the artificial reef permits. The
only difficulty with this is that access to files in
this situation is often restricted and their security
may depend on the fate of the organization. Or-
ganizations having a long stable history and strong
leadership are more likely to continue, thus mak-
ing them suitable hosts for an archives.

The Archivist
The reef research diver organization or reef
builders should appoint a competent individual as
an archivist. This person becomes central to the or-
ganization and to all reef research projects of the
group. This means he or she must be a good com-
municator as well as a good organizer who can
take the time to establish the archives and keep it
up to date.
The archivist should not be confused with
the groups historian and should not be the same
person. The historians duties are limited to keep-
ing a record of the groups activities or perhaps his-
torical research about the reefs. The archivist,
however, stores the actual data gathered by the re-
search divers and reef builders. Unlike the histo-
rian, the archivist plays a key role designing the
data sheets necessary to record observations and
develops ways to store this information in an ap-
propriate data base. Persons having some com-
puter experience and an understanding of how to
handle scientific data make ideal archivists. Of
course, the historian should create the historical
file to be included with the archives, and assist the
archivist where possible.
The archivist is also the liaison with the
chief scientist who is advising the reef research
group, other scientists, agencies, and the divers
who are individual project leaders. The reef re-
search group may be involved with many different
projects at the same time, all reporting their data
through their project leader to the chief scientist
and finally the archivist. The chief scientist having
direct knowledge of these activities is in the best
position to screen the data and keep the archivist
up to date. The archivist is also a ready source of
information for the group's coordinator or leader,
the rest of the membership and the public affairs
coordinator as well. Appendix S outlines a stand-
ard operating procedure for handling information
for the archives.

The Archive's Components
The reef archives generally consists of the
following components:
1) Library;
2) Historic Records;
3) Reef Site Data and Project Data &

4) Reference Collection & Catalog;
5) Reef research Personnel and Training
6) Reef research Equipment Records,
Manuals and Technical file.
Organizational administrative records
should be kept by the elected leadership and not
by the archivist, although they may be stored at
the same location.
The archives, at first, should start with a
copy of the reef site permit files stored in a file
cabinet. Since documentation can take many
forms such as video tapes, computer data bases,
news photos and various written articles and re-
ports, special provisions may be needed to safely
store, index and cross index this material The ar-
chivist would be well advised to consult with a
professional librarian during the initial stages of
setting it up. Consideration must also be made re-
garding screening information for quality and
quantity before it is placed in the files. The chief
scientist should be responsible for this. Arbitrarily
placing anything and everything in the file would
soon render it useless for data retrieval

The library portion of the archives consists
of references, conference summaries and proceed-
ings, bibliographies, general and technical reef re-
ports which are not about specific reef sites the
group is concerned with. It should contain an up
to date file of the laws, policies and correspon-
dence affecting reef programs. Copies of reef
management plans as well as various fishery man-
agement plans should be kept in the general li-
brary. The library is also the logical place to keep
administrative records and organizational corre-
spondence. Maintenance of the general reference
library can be shared between the archivist, organ-
izational secretary and any designated member of
the group. Care should be taken to insure all docu-
ments are properly filed indexed and cross in-
dexed. A library loaning and checkout policy
should be established.

Historic Records
The historic record, maintained by the or-
ganization historian, consists of documents, news
articles and records of the group's general activi-
ties and the chronology of events. It is the "Scrap
Book" usually kept by most dive clubs or other so-
cial organizations. While the information in the
historical file cannot be classified as "technical
data" it still provides background information
which may be needed to understand the "whys or
hows" various reef programs came to be. It

should capture the "politics" or "flavor" of the situ-
ation at the time.
Some attempt should be made by the histo-
rian, to gather historical information from those
who have been involved with past reef construc-
tion projects. While much of this information is
highly subjective, full of personal interpretations
and inaccuracies, it often provides important clues
about when and where reefs were built and who
built them. These clues can fill informational gaps
for later verification. Tape recorded or video
taped interviews of some of the "old timers" are
useful for gathering this information. Many times,
these historical searches uncover written docu-
ments as old fishing logbooks, maps and even pho-
tographs of reef material before it was "dropped".
Thorough historical research can become
the basis for designing reef research dives to ver-
ify earlier placements. While earlier navigation
methods were crude at best, relocation and verifi-
cation of these earlier reef placements by divers is
essential for a complete inventory and evaluation
of the areas reefs. Many "lost" reefs can be found
and placed back on the fishing maps.
Where possible, the historian, chief scientist
and archivist should collaborate in reviewing the
historic information. They should screen it for
data that can be incorporated into the data ar-
chives. Most important would be dates, locations,
names of observers and materials lists of previous
reef placements. Photos and detailed maps or log-
book notes having navigation information should
also be included in the reef data files. Occasion-
ally, a well documented record of a fish catch or
observation from a specific site, if accurate and
verified, should also be included in the data file.

Reef Site Data & Project Files
This is the essence of the archives. This file
contains the actual dive logs (or verified copies),
raw data sheets, placement reports, fishing sur-
veys, special project data and reports, maps and
copies of the reef permits. This file should be or-
ganized according to each reef location. Access to
this file should be exclusively controlled by the ar-
chivist. Controlled access to this file ensures that
the information in it is of high quality, verifiable,
consistent and stored in a manner that is retriev-
able. In addition, any information stored in this
file should be duplicated and stored in another lo-
cation as a backup. The back up system is neces-
sary to prevent loss of data from theft, accidents or
just plain carelessness from some user.
Raw data gathered by divers, fishermen, re-
searchers and/or reef builders should be entered on
a standardized form in pencil or permanent ink (no
felt tip pens please, for they smudge when wet)
when possible, and always accompanied by the

original dive log information filled out on the dive
site. Standardized data sheets serve to remind the
researcher, of the basic information needed, make
data gathering more consistent, and make data
analysis much easier. Projects requiring specific
informational needs such as an experiment or for
monitoring some change over a long period of
time, requires that a form be designed for that pro-
ject. This ensures that the required information is
consistently taken.
All blanks on a standardized form should be
filled out, even if "no observation" is made. When
an observation is NOT made for a specific item on
a standard sheet, a dash (-), or a Not Applicable
(NA) is entered, not a zero, (0). Zero (0) is a real
number which indicates that something was
searched for and not observed. A dash (-) or NA
indicates that the data was not even searched for,
taken or Not Applicable for this situation.
Appendix B contains examples of the dive
log and data sheets used in the N. E. Florida Area.
The basic dive log sheet (Appendix B) which
documents the most elementary dive information
includes; who dived, where, when and conditions
relevant to the divers performance and safety. Of
course, any limitations (such as limited visibility or
currents etc.) on diver performance should be
noted since it will effect the amount, accuracy and
credibility of data recovered on the dive, This in-
formation is very essential for those who must in-
terpret the data later. Without it, the value of the
raw data should be questioned and if in doubt, dis-
File organization for Reef Site Data & Pro-
jects should be keyed to the site location by either
site name or by numeric (LORAN C and Latitude -
Longitude) coordinates. Projects specific to one
site should be filed under the site name. Projects
which cover more than one site should be filed un-
der the projects name, and cross referenced in the
site specific files. For example, a "Snapper Sur-
vey" project involving three reef sites should be
filed under the heading "Snapper Survey". A note
should be placed in each site file indicating "See
Snapper Survey" to show data from that site is also
available in another file. If possible, data sheets
should be duplicated and filed under each of the
three site files.

Reference Collection Documentation
Research of any oceanographic or biological
nature will usually result in the collection and han-
dling of physical or biological specimens which
must be stored in a reference collection and cata-
louged. The definition of a specimen in this case
can be expanded to include film, video and audio
tape recordings. Documentation of a specimen
usually begins with the proper labeling of the speci-

men at the time of collection. Afterwards, it is as-
signed a unique specimen number, and entered in
the catalogue, creating a paper trail to account for
its storage location and disposition. A specimen
catalogue, should be cross referenced with the site
data and dive log file. For example, the catalog
may show a soil sample Number 19870521-3,
from reef site "Miss Anna", is stored by Dr. T.W.
Smith, in Jacksonville Universities Biology Lab,
Room 25, at Jacksonville, Florida. If the sample is
borrowed, perhaps by "Dr. Jones" at another uni-
versity, a record of its loan should be made by the
originating curator (Dr. Smith) and kept until its re-
turn. The designated "Specimen Curator" and
"Reef Data Archivist" must keep in constant com-
munication regarding the storage location, preser-
vation requirements and accounting of reef
Standardized data sheets which originally ac-
companied the specimens during their collection,
should be cited in the catalogue, and their file loca-
tion noted. It is important to be able to match a
specimen with a data and dive log sheet, in the
event further study is needed. The use of unique
specimen numbers greatly simplifies this job.
One example of a numbering system, used
above, makes use of the date the specimen was col-
lected. For example, the number 19870521-3, indi-
cates that it was sample number 3, collected on the
21st of May, 1987. Its format is YYYYMMDD-
(Sample No.), where YYYY is the number of the
year, MM is the month number, DD is the day of
the month and the sample number is arbitrarily as-
signed on the day of collection. It is unlikely that
this number will be duplicated, unless a large num-
ber of samples are taken by different people on the
same day. If that happens, the archivist can assign
additional identifying codes in the specimen cata-
log. Using such a numbering system forces the
catalog to be organized chronologically. It further
simplifies matching dive site data with the speci-
men since both are keyed to the date of collection.
Maintaining specimens and their accounting
requires the services of a well trained curator.
Careful thought must be given towards finding a
suitable Reference Collection storage site and cura-
tor. Most often, a nearby university, college, jun-
ior college or even high school may have more
than adequate storage and recordkeeping facilities.
Many even have faculty willing to serve as cura-
tors, especially if the specimens can be used for
educational programs.

Reef Research Personnel & Training
Personnel and training records provide the
background information about the volunteer reef
researchers. This information is essential for docu-

meeting their credentials as qualified underwater
data gatherers.
Future investigators, concerned about the
credibility of the data will need this information to
analyze the reef data for individual variations.
Verification of an important observation may also
require that the investigator personally contact the
diver who made the observation. Monitoring train-
ing progress is also essential for future project
team selection and developing leadership roles and
special job assignments.
Finally, there are the legal implications for
maintaining such records. Should an accident oc-
cur or legal conflict arise, this file may become ad-
missible as evidence in a trial or legal hearing.
The timely maintenance of this file provides fur-
ther assurance that all research divers meet mini-
mum safety standards and are current with respect
to timely training requirements and regular check-
ups as with CPR training and physical.
The research teams Divemaster, "Training
Directors) and Diving Control Board should be re-
sponsible for establishing this record keeping sys-
tem and keeping this file up to date. They may
elect to limit access to this file and not store it with
the regular "public" archives. The archivist should
be kept apprised of this files status.

Research Equipment Records &

This file contains all documents, purchase re-
cords and technical operating manuals for equip-
ment owned by the reef research team. If the reef
research group is organized as a not for profit cor-
poration, these records will be required by law to
show that the equipment is properly accounted for,
in good repair and disposed of should the organiza-
tion cease to exist. It also insures that technical
manuals for sophisticated equipment are not lost,
or warranty information misplaced. If the equip-
ment requires periodic maintenance, then a Sus-
pense File of required maintenance activities
should be established. A Suspense File is merely
organized according to the future dates when a
maintenance activity is needed. Each piece of
equipment should have an Equipment Use & Main-
tenance Log with it
Some coordination may be needed between
the Chief Scientist, Divemaster and Training Direc-
tor(s) to limit access only to qualified equipment
operators. For example, a research team member
wanting to use the video camera may require spe-
cial training before having access to it. Some re-
cord should be made in the individuals training file
listing what organizational equipment he/she is
qualified to use. Controlling access to equipment
is especially important for specialized life support
equipment since it has a bearing on safety. (i.e, de-

compression computers, surface supplied equip-
ment or air compressors).

Using The Archives &
Specimen Collection
The questions, "Who owns the data and
specimens ?" and "Who should have access to it ?"
are sure to arise. This is especially true after a few
years of data and specimen collecting, when word
gets around, and the information's value begins to
increase. Schools may wish to borrow a "few"
specimens for a class or science fair. Divers, fish-
ermen and reporters may wish to look through the
data files to record reef "numbers" or to write a
story. One prime concern is whether the inexperi-
enced (unfamiliar) file user, will return the data to
its proper place in the file, without harm or altera-
tion. Altered or lost data is costly, especially if it
is irreplaceable.

Who Owns The Data & Who Should
Have Assess To It?
The answer to this question rests with the
question "Who paid for it ?". If the research divers
were performing as volunteer members of a not for
profit corporation (which in essence is supported
by the taxpayer) then the data is public informa-
tion. If the organization is a private corporation,
and financed the research project from either
within the corporation, or if the corporation was
hired, than the data is owned by the corporation or
whoever hired it. If the data was gathered as part
of a public grant, it belongs to the public. If it was
funded by a University researcher, it belongs to
that scientist and the agency providing the grant
(most often this is public tax dollars).
More often than not, the answer simply will
be that the public owns the data, and is therefore
entitled to access to it. Of course this does not im-
ply that the public is entitled to unlimited access
and indiscriminate use of this information, espe-
cially if it results in its loss or alteration. The reef
research organization and the archivist should de-
sign a system that encourages public access with-
out unnecessary inconvenience to either.

Controlling & Retrieving The Reef
Research Information
The Archivist will need to use every means
at their disposal to insure that the data will always
be understandable, never lost or destroyed, yet
within easy access of the public. This can be as-
sured by first designing standardized data records,
a redundant filing system and publishing user ac-
cess guidelines. The redundant system creates a
backup file that should not be readily available to
the public. While expensive initially, its long term

value is self evident. This file should be physically
located away from the original archives storage
site in another building, perhaps even with some
other organization.
Misfiled data can become lost even within
the same file cabinet. Use of standardized library
coding and filing systems can minimize misfiling.
The Library of Congress Subject Heading System
(LCSH) is the most widely available subject head-
ing system available for general purpose manual
files. It has a list of subject headings and a set of
rules of how to set up for those items not included
on the list. The LCSH is a basic tool of most librar-
ies and should not be difficult to find. Consulting
with the local librarian should be a first starting
point before creating the file system.
The use of a database program on a micro
computer offers an excellent means for storing
large amounts of information which can be quickly
sorted and reorganized to suit the users needs.
This makes future analysis easier, and ensures a
higher degree of standardization (unless it is fre-
quently changed). Of course, more planning must
be done during the earlier stages of file develop-
ment to ensure all appropriate data is included.
Needless to say, any computerized system should
be user friendly so that anyone having even the
most rudimentary computer knowledge can easily
access the information. The computer system
should use a common disk operating system
(DOS), and should not be some unusual or hard to
find brand. The primary concern is that the data
will be easily accessible even ten or twenty years
in the future. The data stored in a micro computer
should always have a hardcopy (paper) backup of
the raw data and summarized reports. All disks
should be copied as backups as well.

Establishing the Artificial Reef Data Ar-
chives is no small task. It requires the dedication
and commitment of a sincere, hard working indi-
vidual and the complete support of the reef re-
search team. It is the focal point of all reef
research efforts. Perhaps the willingness of the
group to make a firm commitment to creating the
archives should be considered the first test of the
organization's strength and dedication.
The archivist should be appointed as a semi-
permanent position. Consistency in this position is
essential to creating an effective and efficient infor-
mation storage and retrieval system. Anything less
is inviting chaos.

Library of Congress. 1980. Library of Con-
gress Subject Headings 9th ed. (LCSH)., Library
of Congress, Washington, DC. Note: This should

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