Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Bermuda Reef Ecosystem Assessment and Mapping Programme



Bermuda Reef Ecosystem Assessment and Mapping Programme
Chief Scientist: Dr. Thaddeus J. T. Murdoch, Ph.D.

The B.R.E.A.M. programme was started in 2002 with the mandate to collect the scientific information needed to better enable the management and conservation of Bermuda’s marine organisms and habitats. The programme amalgamated many of the marine components of the Bermuda Biodiversity Project, which was started in 1996 by Dr. Wolfgang Sterrer, Curator of the Natural History Museum, and managed by Dr. Annie Glasspool. Since 2002 some of the major accomplishments of the members of the B.R.E.A.M. programme include:
  • Mapping all coral reefs across the Bermuda Platform to a depth of 50 m
  • Baseline surveys of fish and benthic community structure at 55 seagrass meadows and within over 200 coral reef sites from inshore to 30-m depth
  • Producing a comprehensive biodiversity database accessible locally via the BNHM and globally through the REEF organization. www.reef.org and AGRRA www.agrra.org
  • Documenting the history and extent of a massive seagrass die-off event in the lagoon, in which over 400 ha of seagrass was lost
  • Training over 30 undergraduate and graduate interns from Bermuda and the world
  • Successfully acquiring research funding from major funding sources in the United States of America and the United Kingdom
  • Presenting over 20 local and international lectures and posters
  • Invited to host  a week-long field trip to 10 visiting scientists, as part of the 11th International Coral Reef Symposium in 2008
  • Produced research reports and publications and a book chapter documenting the marine ecology of Bermuda.