May 15, 2021 by Harlie Falzone and Kennedy
We started off the day entering data into the computers, and then went diving at Playa Hundu where we did two dives in the afternoon. Today I, Harlie, did two fish surveys called RVC. This is where we hover in the water column, a few meters above the transect, for fifteen minutes covering a total of 15 meters. I cover the full 15 meters by positioning myself halfway between 0 and 15 meters and create an invisible cylinder, where fishes can swim in and out. i then record the fish species, size and how many I saw. I, Kennedy, followed Boomer as he laid down transects and then took photos of the benthos using a meter stick. Almost everyone saw at least one green moray eel which was awesome. Some people saw five different green moray eels in one dive. I wonder what makes them so prevalent at Playa Hundu. It was shocking and kind of freaky how fat and large they were. While seeing a lot of fish, I, Harlie, also saw Caleb get wrapped up in a transect tape which was quite interesting to watch. After coming back, we broke down all of our dive gear, washed it, and got ready for dinner. We also had a quiz on fish ID, where no one did as well as we thought...thankfully we had extra credit! Overall, it was a pretty good day!
The authors of this blog are students enrolled in Tropical Marine Ecology and Conservation, field courses run in the Caribbean by the University of South Florida. In 2019 and 2021, the course went to the Carmabi research station in Curaçao and dived around the island over a 10-day period, for training and to carry out research projects. In 2018, the group went to Soufriere, Saint Lucia, and took part in various projects in partnership with the Soufriere Marine Management Association. In this blog, students will document their activities and how they relate to course material.