Department of Marine and Coastal Resources officials joined with 25 Thai and foreign diver volunteers to plant 960 pieces of coral off Koh Khai in Phang Nga's Koh Yao district on Friday and Saturday in a bid to rehabilitate the area's decaying coral.
Paitoon Panchaiphum, head of Marine and Coastal Resource Phuket Office, said that the team and diver volunteers re-attached the broken-off coral pieces into the coral bed with cable ties to regrow them. The survival rate will be tracked.
Paitoon said the office also would encourage scuba diver tourists and dive masters to re-attach any broken coral pieces they find to the coral bed and to also help collect undersea garbage during their dives. Koh Khai's coral bed has a 40:60 ratio of live versus dead coral.
A combination of severe coral bleaching, tourism activities and boat anchoring is largely to blame.
The bed can be rehabilitated and revived if action is taken to reduce threats to the coral, and create zones for tourist boat activities and anchoring.
Authorities are working on new measures, said Paitoon.