Benefits of Doing Research at LCRC

The Little Cayman Research Centre is in a unique isolated oceanic location in the Caribbean basin with a low human population (~150 people) and low anthropogenic pressures. It is accessible to both shallow and adjacent deep coral reefs, which have been part of a marine protected area for over 25 years.

Recently, scientists have developed a better understanding that deep reefs are a source of commercially and ecologically important organisms that could re-seed shallow reefs and have potential biotechnological significance. As a result, the LCRC is an important reference site for coral reef research and for understanding the effects of stressors on these ecosystems.

As one of the few international sites for a NOAA Integrated Coral Observing Network (ICON) oceanographic and weather station, with a robust database of fish and benthic communities collected since 1999, the LCRC is actively assembling a team of innovative scientists to address specific stress and connectivity research objectives on all scales (molecular, ecosystem and evolutionary). Our newly constructed ocean acidification wetlab allows us to address questions of the future of coral reefs in a changing ocean, and how they will respond to the pressures of ocean warming and acidification.

Click here to explore the many types of available data CCMI has collected over the past decade.

Not only does Little Cayman provide a healthy marine ecosystem, the islands are safe, friendly, and a short hop from the United States. The Little Cayman Research Centre is a truly unique facility, located on the shorelines of one of the healthiest reefs in the Caribbean.

“I have been visiting marine research stations for over 30 years and have come to realize what it takes to make a good research station. The LCRC has hit on the winning formula. In my estimation, it is already the best facility in the Caribbean and ranks among the best in the world (Lizard Island Research Station holds that prime position). The LCRC facilities are basic but practical; clearly, a great deal of thought has been put into ensuring that the centre delivers quality support for teaching and research.”

Visiting Scientist, Dr. David Bellwood,
School of Marine & Tropical Biology,
Australian Research Council
Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (2007)

If you or your research group is interested in conducting research based out of the Little Cayman Research Centre, please contact Station Manager Peter Quilliam at to request availability and station rates.