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Moela Island, São Paulo State

Rapid Ecological Assessments, Brazil

Our environmental consultants undertook rapid ecological assessments for client, Petrobas, at Laje da Conceição Island and Moela Island in São Paulo State.

Brown booby paddling
Sula leucogaster
Sula leucogaster Brown booby observed during the oceanography research cruiser.

As part of our role, we developed an oceanography research cruiser to complete a characterisation of the biota and the quality of sediment and water inside a protected area. We applied a non-destruction methodology based on scientific diving to avoid damaging the ecosystem.

We provided survey and detailed technical reports of the environmental and biological characteristics of the two islands, which form part of the marine environmental protection area of the central coast of São Paulo State.

Work methods and data collection were based on the acclaimed methodology of the Rapid Ecological Assessment by The Nature Conservancy, which aims to address the lack of information available on biodiversity.


  • Carrying out assessments using non-destructive methods of biotic sampling, with the support of video transect and image recording avoiding any damage to island cliffs.
  • Diving activities and image capturing with good water conditions and visibility restricting the time between activities


  • Preliminary inventory of the fauna and flora species
  • Inventory of the endemic, rare, threatened and exotic species
  • Identification of possible biological indicators for monitoring
  • Identification of real and potential threats
  • Maps identifying the natural communities, their habitats and conservation levels
  • Revision of the zoning map and environmental susceptibility
  • Protection and conservation measures
  • Geographical information system inputs for the special management areas
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