New Coral Reef Contest Closing Date Announced: Magic Porthole’s First Environment Achievement Contest


The new deadline for Horizon International Magic Porthole’s First Environment Achievement Contest to help coral reefs launched on July 1st is DECEMBER 31st 2008.


Corals growing in very shallow water are the most vulnerable to environmental hazards. Shallow tides can expose them to the air, drying the polyps out and killing them. Branching corals growing in shallow water can be smashed by storms. Photo NOAA.

The new deadline for Horizon International Magic Porthole’s First Environment Achievement Contest to help coral reefs launched on July 1st is DECEMBER 31st 2008.  The contest, held in honor of the International Year of the Reef (IYOR) 2008, invites individuals of all ages and organizations to participate.

  “Tell us about your efforts to help save coral reefs. Efforts can be what you are doing far from the oceans to help reduce Global Climate Change with energy efficiency and to stop pesticides and other pollutants from getting into the water.  Near the ocean shore your project might be to stop trash getting into the water.  Nearby coral reefs, your project might be to help reduce damage from inadequately controlled tourism and excessive or destructive types of fishing.  For additional ideas see: Things You Can Do to Protect Coral Reefs brought to you by The International Year of the Reef (IYOR) 2008.”

Prize winners will be chosen for best efforts and the impact of their actions.  There are three categories based on age.  Contest details are posted on the Magic Porthole Web site at

Aquariums, museums and coral reef organizations are offering prizes for this contest. 


First Prize Trip to Coral Reefs

      The First prize is a trip to a coral reef on board Research Vessel Tiburon with Captain Tim Taylor.  Taylor is founder of Ocean Outreach Inc., a non-profit ocean education and outreach organization.


Other prizes include tuition at Sanibel Sea School, art work by Sasha Meret, family passes to Birch Aquarium at Scripps, books from the Wild Dolphin Foundation,

Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) A special feature on dolphins on provided by the The Wild Dolphin Project tells about the importance of coral reefs to dolphins. Photo Wild Dolphin Project

   Wild, decks of two versions of the First Collectors’ Edition Magic Porthole Coral Reef Playing Cards, one version of which can be seen and played with online.  Magic Porthole Ecoknowledge card game, and underwater guides, t-shirts, kids books, and hats from Reef Check

Magic Porthole provides engaging experiences for discoveries about the lives of frogfish, cleaning gobies, turtles, seahorses, sharks, and many of the myriad other reef creatures while encouraging reef preservation with online and offline videos, games, and resources.     

Seahorse Photograph Birch Aquarium at Scripps

  In the online resources, one can learn, for example, that coral reefs are home to an estimated 25 % of all marine species and that the impairment of the reefs causes fish, which are a part of people’s everyday diet, to be lost. 

Seahorse games from the Birch Aquarium at Scripps, contests and resources are provided by Reef Check and IYOR, a flash page about water is from UNEP, TUNZA, and CEE (Center for Environmental Education, India), and many resources on the site are from NOAA/National Ocean Science among others. phins to coral reefs.

The International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI) International Year of the Reef 2008 is a worldwide campaign to raise awareness about the value and importance of coral reefs and threats to their sustainability, and to motivate people to take action to protect them. IYOR welcomes and actively encourages individuals, corporations, schools, governments, and organizations to participate in IYOR 2008. Magic Porthole and the Horizon Solutions Site are Friends of IYOR 2008.


Photograph NOAA

 “Magic Porthole: Discoveries in Coral Reefs, TV Series Preview of Footage Filmed in Bonaire”, an eight minute DVD was featured at the World Conservation Congress. Barcelona, 5-14 October 2008. The DVD and Magic Porthole First Edition Coral Reef Playing Cards were featured at the 11th the International Coral Reef Symposium (ICRS) and at the ICRI General Meeting, Greater Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA 12-13 July 2008.  The DVD is now available on YouTube and on the Magic Porthole Web site.



Damsel Fish from Magic Porthole DVD “Magic Porthole: Discoveries in Coral Reefs, TV Series Preview of Footage Filmed in Bonaire”








Horizon International’s Magic Porthole program, an informal science education program, is made possible by an award of a National Science Foundation Planning Grant, funding from many supporters for filming in Bonaire, individuals and foundations, and substantial contributions of talent and services and the help of many partners.

Advisory Board for Magic Porthole:

Walter H. Adey, Ph.D., Director, Marine Systems Laboratory, Smithsonian Institution; Alexandra Cousteau, Co-Founder, EarthEcho, Gordon Cragg, Ph.D., former Chief, Natural Products Branch, National Cancer Institute; Sylvia A. Earle, Ph.D., founder of Deep Ocean Engineering; David Ellis, Ph.D., former Director, Boston Museum of Science; William Fenical, Ph.D., Director, Center for Marine Biotechnology and Biomedicine, Scripps Institution of Oceanography; David Gelernter, Professor, Computer Science, Yale U.; Peter R. Haje, former General Counsel and Executive Vice President Time-Warner; Carl-Gustaf Lundin, Head, IUCN Global Marine Programme; Gus Speth, Dean, Yale Forestry and Environmental Studies. Numerous youth are advisors.


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