Instructions are important!

Today was a great day that began with dolphin observations at Bailey’s Key (Lots of play was observed – see Tank here with a mangrove seed pod!) and then we spent the day at Maya Key snorkeling, investigating the replica of the Mayan ruin at Copan, and checking out the rescued animals calling the key home.

Leo – Due to today’s incredible snorkeling experience I have decided that I would like to have more experience working with coral. Because it’s amazing how much a colony of small organisms can group and sustain their ecosystem over time in different ways.

Karla – I really enjoyed swimming on the reef drop-off at Maya Key this morning. It was really hard to not get lost and go off the deep end.

Riley – The snorkeling today showed me a lot of fish from the Fish ID talk of last night, which gave me more knowledge of the area.

Mary – Fish no longer freak me out. Only coral scare me since I found out why fire coral is called that name (I’m ok!). It also made me less afraid of the water because I encountered coral and I am ok!

Brie – the snorkeling near the drop off made me really excited and has fascinated me to maybe get a diving certification.  

Nicole – doing the observations this morning was a lot more insightful after being familiar with the directions and it was fascinating to see all the play behavior ongoing. Also, snorkeling was really fun and I got obsessed looking at the fish and wandered off a bit too far from my buddy (and then regrouped). (Nicole seen here snorkeling!)

Mia – I enjoyed the coral restoration presentation. I knew about coral nurseries but did not know the function of it but that was really educational.

Irene – I learned to swim for this trip and today I snorkeled in the deep ocean for the first time and it was intimidating but beautiful.

Diego – after a wonderful session of snorkeling and sitting through a lecture about coral I have reevaluated small personal choices that I can make every day to protect reef life. One person can make a difference.

Andrew – I’ve been thinking a lot more about cognitive because of grad apps but snorkeling and learning about dolphins reminds me how much I like comparative psychology.

Santi – I appreciated the ability to snorkel with a vest because it gave me an opportunity I might not have taken.

Cidney – seeing two wild elkhorn colonies made me hopeful for their recovery.

Rebekah – snorkeling was a blast and I wasn’t scared like I thought I’d be. The dolphins were super fun this morning and I liked shopping in the gift shop at Maya Key.

(Rebekah taking notes this morning!)

Celli – I am thankful to have dropped my phone in the shallow water and not the deep ocean during the snorkeling.

Dr. K – I was extremely proud that everyone went snorkeling!

Dr. H – I am also proud that everyone finished the entire snorkel session (~45 min!).

Our afternoon was filled with a coral restoration lecture, GIS training for the space-use-data collected each morning, and reviewing the morning’s video observation data. Another full but fun day!

Until then, cheers

Kathleen and the “self-renamed” group: The “oooooo – Rattler ‘Cudas”