Coral Reef Study

Onsite coral labratory
Onsite coral labratory
Apra Harbor coral
Apra Harbor coral
Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC)-Atlantic
Mangilao, Guam, USA

As part of the worldwide Marine Species Monitoring contract, HDR recently completed a study in Mangilao, Guam. Our team of scientists were tasked to determine how dredging would affect coral and other native species established in Apra Harbor, where the U.S. Navy would like to build a new wharf for aircraft carriers.

HDR performed marine resources surveys including:

  • CVN Impact Area Coral Reef Community Surveys
  • Potential Mitigation Site Reconnaissance Surveys
  • CVN Impact Area Soft Bottom Benthic Surveys
  • Mitigation Options Review
  • Lab-Based Coral Dose-Response
  • San Louis Ponds Assessment
  • Watershed Easement Assessment
  • Comprehensive Fish/Turtle Surveys
  • Hydrologic Non-Point Source Runoff Assessment

Throughout the study, HDR scientists dove into the waters of the Pacific Ocean to study the coral habitat and map its presence. Coral samples were evaluated onsite from a temporary lab. The coral lab featured state-of-the-art equipment necessary to critically evaluate the effect relocating the coral would have on the species and other sea life utilizing the habitat.

HDR collected coral and benthic data in accordance with survey methods provided by National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). The data collection effort included collecting marine resource data from 72 sites and performing reconnaissance surveys at 10 locations. The surveys identified resources at each location, the relative condition of the resources, and contribution of primary stressors and suitability for recovery/enhancement actions. In addition, HDR evaluated general ecological benefits gained by marine ecosystems though implementation of selected mitigation options identified at each location including watershed and wetlands biological evaluation of potential mitigation projects related to watershed management programs.

HDR's onsite coral lab was constructed in cooperation with the Guam Shipyard in Sumay, and supported by Micronesia Divers Association. Upon study completion, the lab equipment HDR utilized in the coral lab was donated to the University of Guam (UOG) Marine Lab to enhance their marine resources curriculum.