Published: July 2008
Kingman Reef
Team Effort

This was our second expedition to the Northern Line Islands, co-sponsored by the Center for Marine Biodiversity and Conservation (CMBC) at Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) and National Geographic Society. The goal of the 2005 expedition was to study the impacts of human activities along a gradient from the pristine, uninhabited Kingman to the populated and degraded Kiritimati. The goal of the 2007 expedition to Kingman was to study in detail the only pristine atoll in the archipelago. We dived from the shallow lagoon to deeper parts of the fore reef, and obtained a snapshot of the atoll ecosystem including all life, from microbes to sharks. The results of our research studies have enormous implications for the conservation of coral reefs worldwide. The 2007 expedition was conducted from the MV Searcher of the Medical Foundation for the Study of the Environment.

Enric Sala, Expedition Leader – National Geographic Societey and CMBC, SIO
Stuart Sandin (Scientific Coordinator and fish expert) – CMBC, SIO
Christian McDonald (Diving Safety Officer) – CMBC, SIO
Jennifer Smith (Algal and benthic expert) – National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis, Uinversity of California, Santa Barbara
Alan Friedlander (Fish expert) - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Oceanic Service, Center for Coastal Monitoring and Assesment Biogeography Team & The Oceanic Institute
Edward DeMartini (Fish expert) - NOAA Fisheries Service, Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
James Maragos (Coral expert) - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Mark Hatay and Linda Wegley (Microbial experts) - San Diego State University
Brian Skerry (Photographer) – National Geographic Society
Tyler Rowe (Videographer) – Chapman College

THE PARTNERS National Geographic Society
Center for Marine Biodiversity and Conservation, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
San Diego State University
US Fish and Wildlife Service
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Palmyra Atoll Research Station

This research was supported by National Geographic Society, the Moore Family Foundation, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the Fairweather Foundation, the Marine Managed Areas Science Project of Conservation International, the Medical Foundation for the Study of the Environment, E. Scripps, I. Gayler, and several private donors.