Mar 22, 2012

03.22.12, Majuro: Broderick Menke blogs about Crowns of Thorns

March 21, 2012, Majuro, Republic of the Marshall Islands.

The crown-of-thorns starfish (Acanthaster planci) are large starfishes that feed on corals. Having corals being the main structure of our islands, I along with several College of the Marshall Island students, the Jo-Jikum organization, and a member of the Marshall Islands Marine Resources Authority’s (MIMRA) staff set out for a quest to hunt crown of thorns. These are nocturnal creatures and the only time they would come out is when the sun is completely out of the way, in other words at night.

We started gearing up while the sun was reaching its setting point and began our hunt, swam for nearly an hour and a half and found nothing and when the sun was completely out of the way, we spotted one. Fifteen minutes later we spotted another one.  We rested our case with two crown of thorns but with the idea of many more hunts to come. Having these starfishes being a threat to our corals, I am trying my best to recruit and get more hunts scheduled for the future and as a young champion "being the next wave for change" has definately been emphasized as part of my work.

Broderick is our Young Champion intern from Majuro.  For more, visit our Young Champions Blog Network by clicking here.