Tertiary Coral Reefs

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Second Nature Education offers an amazing variety of educational and experiential programs to a variety of coral reef locations in: Queensland and New South Wales; throughout Australia; and overseas.

All our programs are tailored to support a chosen unit of study or as specifically requested by our clients.

What we provide

  • Award-winning educators/ facilitators
  • Itineraries and Flyers
  • Curriculum-based work-booklets
  • All relevant equipment (supplying up to 150x students per session)
  • Example assessment tasks
  • Transportation options (we provide quotes to utilise our own buses for every excursion and can purchase all relevant flights relating to your program where applicable)
  • Pre/Post Excursion Activities (usually a PPP)
  • Risk Assessment (location specific)
  • Variety of field-work locations (where available)
  • Accommodation options (we provide quotes to utilise the most affordable and most appropriate accommodation to suit your needs)
  • Catering options (we provide quotes to utilise our own in-house catering service for every excursion (where available) and/or catering through a third-party provider

Tertiary (TAFE/University) Programs

Our Tertiary Education programs have been developed for specific units of study within a variety Courses (e.g. Marine Biology, Ecology, Coastal Environments, Environmental Science etc.). We can also tailor By participating in a “Coral Reefs” program, students gain a comprehensive understanding and awareness of the importance of reef ecosystems through direct interaction with the natural environment (excursions) or through an interactive PPP with a variety of coral and other reef animal skeletons to pass around (incursions).

Trip Overview

All Tertiary in-class presentations and field trips to coral reef environments come with complimentary assessable work-booklets, which are tailored to the requirements of an institution. Our field trips allow for an in-depth, methodical and structured investigation of coral reef environments. Alternatively, virtual “Coral Reefs” investigations allow students who are unable to participate in a field trip to gain a basic understanding of coral reef ecosystems through a well-designed in-class presentation.


  • Snorkeling over a rainbow of corals and fishes!
  • Being part of an ongoing citizen science project aimed at monitoring reefs throughout Australia (Reef Check Australia)
  • Using cutting edge Coral Point Count with Excel Extensions (CPCe) software
  • Hearing about current, unpublished research from a marine biologist
  • Learning to care for the reef by behaving sustainably
  • Feeding sharks from the comfort of a liveaboard boat (only on camp programs)

More Information



  • Snorkel equipment for exploring the reef
  • Boat fares for travel to and from the reef
  • Coral Watch equipment for measuring the level of bleaching at various sites on the reef
  • Talk from a Reef Check volunteer about the nation-wide database that is being constructed by citizen scientists (like you)!
  • Gear to clear plastic from the reef ecosystem
  • Talk from a marine biologist about the current state of the reef
  • Night snorkels and shark feeding optional on multi-day programs using a liveaboard boat!


  • An age-appropriate interactive PowerPoint presentation
  • Investigating reef structure with coral skeletons to pass around
  • Learning about the cultural value of reef resources with tribal artefacts to pass around
  • Learn about how reefs are formed with the help of a fun animation.
  • Recognise feeding relationships on the reef with a “Friend or Food” game and an on-your-feet “Human Food Web” game
  • Learn about the all-important threats facing the reef
Educational Outcomes
  • Awareness and knowledge of coral reef ecosystems
  • Appreciation for the diversity of coral reef organisms
  • A basic understanding of how coral reef ecosystems work including knowledge of food chains/food webs
  • Awareness of the impacts of human activities on coral reefs both locally and globally
  • Knowledge of local and largescale environmental issues affecting coral reefs including habitat destruction, overharvesting, invasive species, coral bleaching and pollution
  • Learning of sustainable behaviours that minimise these issues
  • A sense of connection to and feeling of stewardship towards Australia’s coral reefs
  • An understanding of the complex processes involved in managing our coral reefs in a sustainable manner
  • Experience in planning and conducting scientific field studies

Below is an example itinerary for a 1-day “Coral Reefs” excursion. All excursions packages include the necessary work booklets and equipment.

8:00     Tour group pick-up Second Nature have a fleet of vehicles available to cater for any number of

passengers (within reason). We can provide transport to and from institutions and airports.

8:45      Arrive at marina to board your vessel to the reef! Snorkel gear will be delegated before students enter the

boat and a safety briefing will be delivered on board.

10:00    Activity Session 1 Introductory snorkel. Students will be briefed on snorkelling techniques and assisted

with the identification of marine organisms in the reef community.

11:30    Enjoy a buffet lunch on board the catamaran.

12:30   Activity Session 2 Coral Watch field work. Students will be briefed on the use of Coral Watch equipment

(developed by Reef Check Australia) to measure the level of bleaching in corals on different parts of the

reef. They will then use the same techniques to collect primary data for both their field reports and an

online database sustained by citizen science.

13:30 Activity Session 3 Second round of field data! Students will randomly place 20m transects over the reef

system. One student will follow the transect, taking photos of the substrate every 2m. These photos can be

used to calculate statistics such as percentage coral cover, relative abundance of corals and population

density of corals using the software, Coral Point Count with excel extensions (CPCe).

14:30   Activity Session 4 Talk from a Coral Watch ambassador and marine biologist. The students will learn

about how the data they collected is assisting scientists to monitor the state of the reef, and how this data

can be used to ensure the sustainable management of the ecosystem.

15:00    Depart destination for marina

16:00   Arrive at marina for immediate departure to institution or airport

16:45  Arrive at institution or airport at required time