Shark Tagging with UM Summer Scholars

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By Jake Jerome, RJD Graduate Student and Intern Last Saturday, the RJD crew headed offshore in hopes to collect more data for the ongoing research projects that are taking place. Leaving from Key Biscayne, we were joined by students from the UM Summer Scholars Program, a mix of high school students from across the country that come to the University to experience college for the first time and get involved in the fields that they are interested in. It was exciting to hear that many of them were not from coastal states and were getting the chance to see sharks … Continue reading

Shark Conservation in the Galapagos Islands

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By Daniela Escontrela, RJD Intern The Galapagos Islands are a popular tourist destination for many people around the world. The pristine environment combined with the vast amounts of life and different species make many people come to the Galapagos every year. However, one of the most important species people come to watch are the scalloped hammerheads and the whale sharks, along with other sharks. Living on the islands for over two months I can say I have seen most of the iconic animals that the Galapagos are known for. However, one of the best experiences I’ve had is snorkeling and … Continue reading

Bioactive Compounds Derived from Marine Algal Species

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By Kyra Hartog, RJD Intern 1. Introduction Marine algal species produce a variety of compounds that are ultimately beneficial to human health. These compounds are often produced as secondary metabolites [1], meaning they are not essential to the algal species’ survival but benefit the organism in some way. These compounds include, but are not limited to, polyunsaturated fatty acids and carotenoids, as well as compounds with antibiotic and antifungal activity. Those compounds with antibiotic and antifungal activity are being investigated for use as components in anti-fouling paints for maritime industries around the world [1]. Polyunsaturated fatty acids are being studied … Continue reading

Shark Tagging with the University of Miami Alumni Association

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By James Keegan, RJD Intern Saturday’s trip looked like it would be a gloomy one with overcast and rain. I was excited for the catered trip, but I left for Crandon Marina with a sense of dread. The prospect of tagging sharks in choppy waters and cold rain did not thrill me. However, once the RJD team loaded the Diver’s Paradise, the skies cleared up a little. After Captain Eric and Neil went over safety and gear deployment, members of the Alumni Association and the RJD team introduced themselves. As we left for Soldier Key, the skies completely cleared, and … Continue reading

Shark Tagging Trip – Oak Ridge High – May 2, 2014

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By Lindsay Jennings, RJD Intern On Friday, May 2nd, RJD once again set out for a day of shark tagging, this time with the school group, Oak Ridge High. We headed out from the Miami Seaquarium and motored out to our first site, north of Soldier Key, in Biscayne National Park. Once all of the drumlines were baited and ready to go, the students eagerly volunteered to help deploy the first ten lines. While waiting for the first set of lines to soak, we were able to go for a quick swim and snorkel, which was most refreshing since it … Continue reading

A True Environmental Success Story

Derelict Fishing gear being removed from the ocean

By Patrick Goebel, RJD Intern The amount of derelict fishing gear lost by commercial and recreational fishing is astonishing. Derelict fishing gear includes nets, lines, crab/lobster and shrimp traps/pots, and other recreational or commercial harvest equipment that has been accidentally lost or intentionally discarded in the marine environment. In the report, A Rising Tide of Ocean Debris, volunteers collected 36,910 fishing lines, 11,059 fishing lures/light sticks, 5,539 fishing nets, and 5,285 crab/lobster traps in the United States alone in 2012. Derelict fishing gear has the potential to continue fishing (entangling and killing marine life). This uncontrolled process is known as ghost … Continue reading