BICA started the Mooring Bay Project in 1993, setting up mooring all around the Islands. Moorings provide safe, permanent anchorage, which prevents boats from dropping anchors that could potentially cause a great deal of damage to coral reefs. In addition, these buoys mark popular dive sites and serve as reference points for research. The program was financed by a local insurance, or Reef Fee.
Utila’s Moorings utilize a marine galvanized chain that runs the entire length of the mooring and ends in a large shackle for easy tie-up. The chain is carefully attached to solid formations, large sand screws, or weights, in order to keep it from moving and causing damage.
BICA has placed around sixty buoys in the area. Today, it makes sure that the buoys are in tact and in place, reporting back to the municipality if anything is out of order. The Municipality then fixes and damages, utilizing a "Reef Fee" in order to fund the repares. There are currently 90 buoys and plans to place more as needed.
Click on Dive Buoy Map for an interactive, updated map (Google Maps format).