The Bermuda Reef Ecosystem Assessment and Mapping Programme (BREAM)


The BREAM research programme, initiated in 1999, examines the biology and ecology of Bermuda’s coral reefs and other marine ecosystems, and is a collaboration the Department of Conservation Services, and the Bermuda Zoological Society (BZS). 

The aims of BREAM are:

1. To support multidisciplinary studies of Bermuda’s coral reef platform in order to enhance the research and management of our unique marine environment. This is accomplished in several ways:

  •  through direct, targeted studies by the resident team to address management/research needs;
  • by encouraging collaborative ventures with other local or visiting scientists;
  • by providing logistic support to other researchers;
  • by securing funds for specific projects to be undertaken either by the resident team, or in collaboration with overseas scientists;
  • and by sharing all information with the scientific community through databases, publications, workshop and conferences.

2. To properly document and orchestrate data collection, management and sharing through the development of a GIS framework in order to promote improved local, regional and international understanding of coral reef systems. This is accomplished by:  

  •  collating all available historical information; by establishing standards for data collection;
  • by sharing information;
  • by encouraging the adoption of policies by the  Ministry of the Environment through which local and visiting research studies can be tracked to ensure that a copy of all findings is secured locally.

3. To integrate the resource managers, the scientific community and the users in the management processes to define common goals and to recognize the significant pressures and conflicts that are placed upon our marine environment. This is accomplished through: 

4. To promote a range of public awareness programmes, with the goal of promoting care of our unique coral reef ecosystem. This is accomplished both directly through: 

  • publications;
  • weblog
  • media articles;
  • local television;
  • via the Education team of the Bermuda Zoological Society

In the past 5 years the BREAM team have mapped all coral reefs across the Bermuda Platform to a Geographic Information System database, and surveyed 55 seagrass sites and over 160 coral reef sites located across the area. Our data is publicly available on internationally accessible web databases such as and We are using the information collected to develop a predictive model of the distribution of hard and soft corals, reef fishes, and other organisms and plants across the Bermuda Platform, so as to best assist in adaptive marine resource management.

Visit BREAM on the web at: 

BREAM Document links:

  • T.J.T Murdoch. May 2006. Population outbreak of the Tritonia hamnerorum nudibranch, an obligate grazer on the purple sea fan Gorgonia ventalina across Bermuda’s northern reefs in 2005. Bermuda Biodiversity Project Special Publication 2006-003.

This report aims to document the location of the June 8th 2006 grounding of the cruise

ship Norwegian Crown, describe the site conditions found after the ship was successfully re-floated, and present remediation options and recommendations.

The results of a‘quick-look’ survey of the sunken ferry Sea Venture, carried out on February 3rd 2008.

BREAM Project Fliers: