The project will host 125 field trips, which will educate as many as 3,125 socially disadvantaged middle and high school students about Florida’s natural resources and the importance of conserving them.
Tag: Indian River Lagoon
Toxins from Harmful Algae Found in Bull Sharks of Florida’s Indian River Lagoon
The Indian River Lagoon (IRL) is a bull shark nursery habitat crucial to survival and recruitment of Atlantic coast bull sharks. Analysis of 123 samples found the presence of one or more phycotoxin from harmful algal blooms in 82 percent of the bull sharks and their prey items. Findings highlight the potential threat of toxic algae to the IRL’s ecosystem and surrounding human populations that may consume the same prey species. The highest concentrations of most toxins were detected in gut content samples, highlighting dietary exposure as an important mechanism of toxin transfer to bull sharks in the system.
Drifter or Homebody? Study First to Show Where Whitespotted Eagle Rays Roam
It’s made for long-distance travel, yet movement patterns of the whitespotted eagle ray remain a mystery. Between 2016 and 2018, scientists fitted 54 rays with acoustic transmitters and tracked them along both the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic coasts of Florida, which differ in environmental characteristics. Results of the study reveal striking differences in travel patterns on the Atlantic coast compared to the Gulf coast. Findings have significant conservation and adaptive management implications for this protected species.
Endangered Juvenile Smalltooth Sawfish Found in St. Lucie River
Scientists tagged and released a young, rare female smalltooth sawfish — a significant step for sawfish research and recovery efforts in Florida. The 10-year acoustic tag is a major milestone in providing crucial capacity to tell where these mysterious and endangered fish are headed in the future.
Dolphin Calf Entangled in Fishing Line Only Lived Two Years Following Rescue
Researchers examined the outcome of an entangled bottlenose dolphin calf with monofilament fishing line wrapped tightly around its upper jaw. It was successfully disentangled and immediately released it back into its natural habitat. Surviving only two years, results showed long-term severe damage due to this entanglement including emaciation. There are about 1,000 bottlenose dolphins that live in the Indian River Lagoon, which also is a very popular location for recreational fishing.