Coral Reproduction - Dr. Hanna R. Koch 

Coral sexual reproduction is crucial for population persistence, generating genetic diversity and promoting adaptive evolution. However, many species on Florida’s Coral Reef are experiencing reproductive failure and new generations of coral offspring are failing to recruit into adult populations. The Coral Reproduction team focuses on several facets of coral reproduction for research and restoration including assisted sexual reproduction, managed breeding and optimizing ex-situ coral sexual propagation processes. Work may include research projects related to optimizing fertilization, settlement and post-settlement survival rates for various stony coral species, assessing genotypic (in)compatibilities, in- and/or ex-situ spawning, rearing sexual recruits and grow-out, fragmentation, general coral husbandry, maintaining spawning nurseries, and assisting with fieldwork.     

This work is based at the Elizabeth Moore International Center for Coral Reef Research and Restoration (IC2R3) on Summerland Key, Florida. SCUBA diving as part of the internship is not always guaranteed. The internship includes working under challenging conditions outside, late nights, long days and weekends during coral spawning season. Professional development activities may include scientific literature review, experimental design, data analysis, honing written/oral communication skills and graduate school preparation.