Welcome to the


Coral Health Atlas


This website is designed to provide interactive access to coral health data and ecosystem characteristics at study sites throughout the Hawaiian Archipelago. Scroll down to learn more or use the tabs at the top of the page to explore information regarding coral health research..

E Komo Mai


What's new?

For project details - CLICK THE PHOTOS ABOVE

Nearshore coral reef ecosystems have provided a source of sustenance and cultural importance to Hawaiian communities for hundreds of years. Today, the coral reef ecosystems of Hawai‘i are not only important sources of food and coastal protection, but are also a critical economic resource. Due to isolation and high levels of endemism, the health and function of coral reefs in Hawai‘i is inherently susceptible to harmful environmental stressors. The protection and conservation of these important ecosystems will require a thorough understanding of the dynamics of coral health and disease.


There has been a considerable amount of research conducted to investigate coral health dynamics in Hawai‘i. Unfortunately, much of this data is not publicly accessible. The goal of the Coral Health Atlas is to provide access to data with an interactive map that allows users to view information from sites throughout the Hawaiian Islands. The map also contains additional data layers pertaining to ecosystem characteristics at each site. Please stay tuned as we add more data and interactive imagery to this website.


Photo Credit: John Coney and Jeffrey Kuwabara

 Active Interactive Map - CLICK THE PHOTO ABOVE




    John Burns M.S.

    UHM Ph.D. Candidate


    John Burns is a PhD candidate at UH Manoa. He conducts research on the health of corals and physiological impacts of disease at several sites around Hawaiʻi Island. He has worked to coordinate the development of the Coral Health Atlas and has been involved in data collection and analysis.


    Misaki Takabayashi Ph.D.

    Marine Science Department Chair


      Dr. Misaki Takabayashi is an associate professor in Marine Science Department at UH Hilo. She has been studying coral biology and ecology by combining molecular genetics and field ecology in Hawaii, Australia, Malaysia, Okinawa, and Florida. Her research involves a dynamic team of graduate and undergraduate students as well as collaborators from other universities and government agencies. Dr. Takabayashi has provided technical support for the data collection and development of the Coral Health Atlas.




    Makani Gregg M.S.

    CREST Graduate Scholar


    Makani Gregg is graduate  of  the  UH Hilo Master’s degree in the Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science (TCBES) Program. Her thesis focuses on the effects of water quality and community structure on coral health around Hawaiʻi Island. She is affiliated with the Marine Science Department and Keaholoa STEM Scholars Program at UH Hilo; as well as, Nā Maka Papahānaumokuākea and several local communities.


    Micheal Best B.S.

    Software Engineer


    Michael Best is a software developer for the EPSCoR Hawaiʻi Cyberinfrastructure team at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo. He has a B.S. in Computer Science from North Carolina Central University in Durham, NC. Michael designed and built the Coral Health Atlas web application.


    Ruth Gates Ph.D.



      Dr. Ruth Gates is a Researcher at the Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB). Her research interests lie in the biological mechanisms and traits that dictate the environmental threshold of marine organisms. Her research lab focuses on defining attributes in corals that underpin inter- and intra-specific differences in their sensitivity to thermal stress, ocean acidification and pollutants. Dr. Gates has provided technical support for the data collection and development of the Coral Health Atlas.




    Hokuokahalelani Pihana B.A.

    UHH TCBES Masters Candidate


    EPSCoR/CREST Graduate Scholar

    Thesis: Effects of growth anomaly in corals exosymbiotic community


    Monika Frazier B.S.

    TCBES Graduate Student


    Monika Frazier is a MSc candidate in the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science (TCBES) program whose research focuses on using molecular tools to learn more about coral. Her current research entails assessing the expression level of genes that are involved in coral immune function.


    Donna Delparte Ph.D.

    Assistant Professor


      Dr. Donna Delparte is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geosciences at the Idaho State University. Her area of research is GIS, remote sensing, terrain analysis and geo-visualization. In her role as co-Lead for the EPSCoR Hawaiʻi Cyberinfrastructure team and newly created Hawaiʻi Geospatial Data Repository she supervised and aided in the development of the web-based mapping application for the Coral Health Atlas.




    Kohei Miyagi B.S.

    Software Engineer


    Kohei Miyagi is a cyberinfrastructure technician for the Hawaiʻi Geospatial Data Repository of the EPSCoR Hawaiʻi. He has a B.S. in Computer Science from the Universityof Hawaiʻi at Hilo. He manages web, database, and GISservers that host the Coral Health Atlas of Hawaiʻi.


    Nicolas Turner B.A.

    GIS / RS Analyst


    Nicolas Turner is a Cyber GIS / Remote Sensing Analyst for the EPSCOR Hawai’i Cyber Team. He has a B.A. in Geography and a certificate in Planning from the University of Hawai’i at Hilo. His area of experience and interest is in unmanned aerial vehicles,  GIS, remote sensing and geospatial vsualization.


    Chris Nishioka M.B.A.

    GIS Analyst / IT Technician


      Chris Nishioka is a CompTIA A+ certified GIS Analyst / IT Technician for the EPSCOR Hawai'i Cyber Team. He has a M.B.A. from Chaminade University, B.A. in Environmental Studies with a minor in Geography, and a certificate in planning from the University of Hawai'i at Hilo.  He is also a graduate of the CISCO networking academy. His areas of experience and interests are GIS,  data visualization, web design,  IT support, marketing, and project management.




    Jeffery Kuwabara B.A. B.S.

    Marine Option Program Coordinator


    Jeff is the Marine Option Program (MOP) Coordinator at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Jeff plays a vital role in creating opportunities for students to increase their ocean awareness, understanding, and appreciation through experiential marine-related education. Jeff is also an extremely talented photographer and has provided many of the images used for the Coral Health Atlas website.


    John Coney M.S.

    Support Staff and Technician


    John Coney is support staff and technician for the Physics and Astronomy department at UH Hilo. He holds a B.S. in computer science and a M.Ed. in educational technology. John brings an oceanographic background to the progam and holds a 100 ton USCG ticket, as well as a NAUI scuba instructor certification. As manager of a scanning electron facility for many years, he hopes to apply this experience to the UH Hilo observatory on Mauna Kea. John has very graciously shared his amazing underwater photographs for the Coral Health Atlas website.




    Spatial Data Analysis and Visualization (SDAV) Lab at UH Hilo

    The  SDAV lab is a GIS/computer/spatial technology facility which sole purpose is to help advance Hawaiʻi-based scientific research through professional collaboration, utilizing the latest technology for spatial and temporal analysis and visualization. The research accentuates multidisciplinary methodology  and encourages cooperation and sharing of knowledge within the educational system and with the private and public sectors.  SDAV@HAWAII.EDU

Cooperating Agencies

EPSCoR Hawaiʻi

Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) is building research competitiveness. Through $20 million, five-year awards, NSF investment in multi-institutional and interdisciplinary projects provides physical, human and cyber infrastructure aimed at improving research competitiveness in six states.

University of Hawaiʻi

The University of Hawaiʻi Marine Science programs aim to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the world’s oceans, and an appreciation of the importance of marine ecosystems to the global environment and human life, through a combination of hands-on laboratory and field experience, inquiry-based instruction and direct interactive learning.

UHH SDAV Lab at Hilo

 SDAV provides training and technoogical services focued on in advancing Hawaiʻi-based scientific research through professional collaboration and training, utilizing  the latest technology for spatial analysis and visualization.