|The Guardian Artificial Reef was created through a series of material deployments from April 1992 thru May 1993. This material consisted almost entirely of concrete culverts and collection boxes ranging is size from 1 to 10 feet. The deployment also included two steel Fuel tanks, (10,000 and 30,000 gallon) and 24 steel Rinker/concrete mixer barrels. As part of the matching funds segment of the Monitoring Grant, The F.O.S. Dive Team installed 3 Benchmarks on 3 different material structures at this site. They are as follows:
Installed on a concrete culvert next to other culverts and collection boxes. All are completely intact and heavily encrusted. These 2 to 5 foot diameter structures provide cave like swim throughs that are very popular with the local fish population. Goliath Grouper can often be seen using these structures as their own private lair.
Installed on a cluster of approximately 4-6 steel Rinker Barrels. These particular barrels are intact with a slightly lesser amount of encrustation than the nearby culverts. Like the culverts, large grouper are attracted to and take refuge inside the cave like barrels.
Installed on the smaller of the two large steel fuel tanks that lie in close proximity to each other. Both structures are mostly intact and heavily encrusted. There are some larges holes in the tanks but these are access hatches that were cut prior to deployment and not from corrosion. These structures seem to attract mostly smaller Fish probably due to the lack of large corridors or interstitial spaces.