A coral reef survey study is currently underway in American Samoa as part of the territory's ongoing Coastal Management Programme to assess the economic value of the islands' coral reefs and other coastal habitats.
The study, conducted by the US government, also aims to assess the importance of coral reefs and their fish to the way of life for people living in American Samoa.
By trying to understand this importance in dollar terms, the study intends to help villages and the island's population get better long-term value from their coastal resources.
As part of the study, a number of informal discussion meetings were conducted in selected villages towards the end of last month.
The aim of the meeting was to discuss the importance of coral reefs to village life, and to discuss the method to be used in an island-wide questionnaire survey amongst a representative sample of the population.