Sabah Parks / MCS March 2011
In March 2011 the CICBP conducted 2 coral identification workshops in Sabah, Malaysia. The workshops were commissioned by Dr Elizabeth Wood of the UK based Marine Conservation Society in partnership with Sabah Parks with supporting funding supplied by the Darwin initiative. Coral interested types with a good memory will recall that Elizabeth Wood as the author of Corals of the World -1983 TFH Publications. (Not to be confused with the later 3 volume treatise by the same name published in 2000 by Dr J.E.N. Veron). This important early volume served as the foundation work for a generation of coral nerds!
Elizabeth has maintained a lifelong commitment to the reefs of the Sabah region with one of the legacies of her work with the Malaysian government and Sabah Parks being the gazetting of the Tun Sakaran Marine Park in the Semprona islands.
Workshop participants were selected from a broad range of backgrounds including marine science, mariculture, research, marine park management and enforcement. Indeed it was a privilege to be a part of the capacity building in this inspirational project to create and conserve a Marine Protected Area (MPA) in Sabah (Malaysian Borneo).
I am happy to report that the workshops held at Tun Sakaran and Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Parks were extremely successful. They provided the first opportunity to use our newly finalised Coral Finder Toolkit training resources which, because of their strong visual emphasis, overcame the technical language challenges associated with coral identification. An interesting strategy we deployed here was to use the workshop participants who were proficient with the technical language to lead a workshop session developing a Bahasa Malay glossary of technical terms.
Slideshow from the coral identification workshops at Tun Sakaran and Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Parks, Sabah