Save Ours Seas Foundation, a global ocean conservation and marine research organisation, last month announced its new Keystone Grant winners for 2017, as well as its partners and continuation grants for this year.

Save Our Seas Foundation’s Keystone Grant forms part of the Foundation’s commitment to protect oceans by funding and supporting research, conservation and education projects across the world. In Seychelles, where Save Our Seas Foundation has a research centre, Terence Vel won funding from the Keystone Grant to undertake a comparative terrestrial biodiversity assessment of D’Arros Island and St Joseph Atoll.

D’Arros Island and St Joseph Atoll lie in the remote Outer Islands of Seychelles, forming part of a small chain of islands that comprise the Amirantes Group. The Foundation’s research center sits on D’Arros Island, which is separated from St Joseph (a circle of sixteen small islands) by a channel of water one kilometer wide. According to the Foundation’s website, their ecosystems are totally linked and the islands sit in a biodiversity and biomass hotspot.

A number of other projects take place on D’Arros and St Joseph, and the Foundation has just announced a continuation of the grants for several of these, including Jeanne Mortimer’s community monitoring of turtles at D’Arros and St Joseph, as well as projects studying reef manta rays, stingrays and shearwaters.

The Foundation will also continue to provide support and equipment for the University of the Seychelles.