REEF Information

2012 GAFC Recap2011 GAFC Recap
2010 GAFC Recap

2009 GAFC Recap
2008 GAFC recap

How can I help out?
If you would like to donate prizes, coordinate a site, or to sign up to dive, contact Bob Michelson. To help with the setup, contact Rick Rosa

What are the requirements to participate?
You must be a member of REEF to submit a survey. You must also pre-register using this form. Before diving, you must Fill out the liabilty waiver and bring it with you to the dive.

What kind of raffle prizes are there?
We have raised thousands of dollars worth of prizes in the past, ranging from dive vacations to masks and regulartors.

How Does it work?
Simply fill out a survey for the fish you are seeing, and turn the forms in at Stage Fort Park before 1:30PM

When is the raffle Drawing?
The drawing will be held at 2:00PM

How much does it cost?
Stage fort park charges $15.00 for parking (free parking is also available nearby, along with a shuttle), and the NEADC is asking for $5 for food.

Great Annual Fish Count

The 11th Annual GAFC was held on July 28th, 2012!


GAFC 2012

The 2012 Annual Great Annual Fish Count was a great success. We again had the largest single-day fish count in the country, with 83 divers, and 90 surveys submitted submitted for the day.  There were 38 species sighted.

A huge thank you goes out to all who helped make this the largest GAFC event in the USA for an unprecedented 10th year in a row!! A special thanks to our volunteers David, Becky, Greg, Kate, Leonor Andrew, Amy, Suzanne, Eileen, Bob, and to everyone who helped out!

No surprise with what was spotted, with cunner and winter flounder being the most commonly seen.  Some people even saw four-spot flounder and northern puffer!

View the data collected for the day on REEF's website

View photos in the NEADC Scrapbook and on Facebook

Send any more photos to, and remember to count fish on every dive!

Plus, we were featured in REEF's General email:

Another "GREAT" Annual Fish Count
By Janna Nichols, REEF Outreach Coordinator

The 21st annual Great Annual Fish Count (GAFC) took place in July, with many dive shops, dive clubs, and other groups organizing fish ID classes, dive /snorkel days, BBQs and more fun gatherings. The concept behind the GAFC is not only to accumulate large numbers of surveys during the month of July, but to introduce divers/snorkelers to fishwatching and get them started doing REEF surveys. Groups from California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Maine, Hawaii, Florida, North Carolina, and new to the event in 2012 - New Brunswick, all participated! Once again, this year's largest one day event was held in the Northeast, coordinated by the New England Dive Club. Thank you to ALL participants, and we hope you'll continue conducting REEF surveys on your dives year round

We would also like to thank the sponsors of the event who helped provided raffle prizes:

  • Uma Marini (
  • Subsalve USA (
  • Divers Alert Network (
  • South Shore Divers, Inc. (
  • Discover Diving Dive Shop (
  • Ikelite Underwater Systems (
  • Olympus Imaging America (
  • Fourth Element (
  • Scubapro/Subgear (
  • Cressi-Sub (
  • Divers Market, Inc. (
  • Aqualung (
  • Dutch Springs (
  • New England Aquarium Dive Club (
  • Andy Martinez (
  • Mass Diving, Mark Potter (
  • Jonathan Bird (
  • Northeast Scuba (
  • Manta Industries (
  • Ameriprise Financial
  • Northeast Diving News (
  • Aquatic Escapes (
  • Maine Divers SCUBA Center (
  • Paradise Divers Dive Club
  • Shark Bait Dive Charters (

7/12/12 - Andy Martinez has graciously agreed to donate 10 signed North Atlantic marine life posters to the fish counters raffle. The event has $5,759.91 so far in raffle prizes!

07/11/12 - SCUBAPRO and SUBGEAR have generously donated a selection of products, including:

Verve Snorkel
Nexus Snorkel
Action Mask Black
Vibe Mask
SG Shorty Large
SG Shorty Small
Women's Element 3 MM Pink/Red suit
Women's Pink/Black Element 3 mm
SCUBAPRO 3mm Delta Boot
Subgear Rash small White

Over $1,000 worth of gear!

REEF has put together a great presentation on who they are and what the GAFC is. View the presentation here

Jonathan Bird will be joining us this year, and is considering producing one of his Emmy Award winning TV segments on our event!  He will have a table at the event which he can sell, and autograph his books and DVD's.

The GAFC has been featured in an article in May 2012 issue of New England Diving News. Pick up the issue at your local dive shop or Click here to view the full page story!

As of 5/4/12, the raffle is valued at $5,628.76.  A big thank you goes out to the continued support of Olympus, Ameriprise Financial, and Dutch Springs.  Grand prizes include:  2 pair Aqualung split fins (donated by Aqualung and Ameriprise Financial)), Sherwood Brut Regulator (donated by South Shore Divers), 4 pairs of Olympus binoculars (Olympus Imaging America, Inc.) - with more to come.

As of 4/12/12, our raffle is now valued at $4004.00, with more to come shortly.

There will be a picnic, raffles, and a touch tank.  Every diver who submits a survey form submitted will get an entry into the raffles.  We are expecting more than 100 divers to participate in the day’s celebration.

What is REEF?

REEF provides the SCUBA diving community a way to contribute to the understanding and protection of marine populations. REEF achieves this goal primarily through its volunteer fish monitoring program, the REEF Fish Survey Project.

More on REEF, including how to join and contribute.

GAFC Details

Participants need to have a REEF Member # prior to the day of the event.  A REEF member # is required in order to do a survey and then hand it in to get a raffle ticket.  The process is painless:

Most dives begin at 8 am, with Maine dives starting at 7am. Sites with Coordinators are listed below, Sign up using our form before July 25th to sign up for a dive. If there are any questions, email Bob Michelson.

Be sure to fill out the liability waiver and bring it to your dive. The site coordinator will collect them.

After the dives, participants fill out their surveys, and meet at Stage Fort Park. The survey papers are handed in and participants get 1 raffle ticket. (1 raffle ticket / diver no matter how many surveys are handed in).The diver can choose what grand prize they wish to go for, only 1 prize per diver can be won.

There will be food and drinks for sale, as well as a touch-tank and many other activities. Water, lemonade, and ice tea will be available for free, bring your own water bottle to help the environment!

The surveys must be handed in by 1:30 pm, and the Raffle is drawn at 2 pm. The Grand prizes are pulled 1st followed by general raffle prizes drawn in order of descending value.

Dive Sites

2012 Dive Sites
Site Name
Site Coordinator
REEF Zone Code
Folly Cove
View on map
Cathedral Rocks
View on map
Pebble Beach
View on map
Lane's Cove
View on map
Back Beach
View on map
Old Garden Beach
View on map
Magnolia Rocks
View on map
TBA Maine Dive site

Last Year...

Last year we had 90 Divers, 124 Surveys. Divers gathered data from 25 sites throughout the NE: 19 sites in Massachusetts, 2 in Maine, 3 in Rhode Island and 1 in New York. For the 10 year in a row, it was the largest single-day Great Annual Fish Count (GAFC) event. After conducting their surveys, divers gathered at Stage Fort Park in Glouster, MA, for fun, food, and prizes (over $8,000 in prizes were donated for the event)

The NEADC would like to thank the following sponsors, as well as the volunteers who helped make it such a success:

The Reef Data is now available online:
View the REEF data report for this event

To view your own data, log in using your Reef ID

The Gloucester Times did a great story on 2009 the event, view it here

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