The Line Islands are nestled in the Pacific Ocean 1,000 miles south of Hawaii. These tropical islands were uninhabited when discovered, although a few show evidence of ancient Polynesian culture. Today, coral reef ecologists, biologists, research divers, writers and photographers are embarking on an exciting voyage to establish a baseline for healthy coral reef habitats-from microbes to sharks.
More than two dozen explorers will be spending nearly a month gaining a greater understanding about human impacts on these delicate marine ecosystems, with the hope of creating a blueprint for restoration. The science team is travelling to this remote and isolated part of the planet, described as "the perfect place" to study reefs from degraded to pristine. During this expedition, more than 1,500 dives will occur; each participant will make more than 80 dives. Immense amounts of time will be spent diving, collecting, counting, and monitoring, and maybe even some eating and sleeping. When a little extra time-and communication systems-permit, the team will send back notes from the field that will be posted here. Please join us on this virtual voyage into the magnificent and dazzling undersea world of coral reefs in the remote and exotic tropical Pacific Ocean.