On Friday, September 27, students from Deep Creek Middle School (DCMS) met with staff from the Cape Eleuthera Institute (CEI) at Paige Creek to discuss mangrove ecosystems. Tiffany Gray, lead outdoor educator for CEI, led the eighth grade science class through an interactive lesson covering mangrove identification, their importance and threats to the ecosystem.
Stacey Dorman and Kylie Bloodsworth, CEI Flats Ecology interns, also gave the students an overview of research carried out by the institute and how mangrove ecosystems might be affected by climate change. The students then snorkeled up the creek system, taking note of important biota residing in the mangroves, such as juvenile barracuda, schoolmaster snapper, checkered puffer and juvenile lemon sharks. The DCMS students happily came away from class with the knowledge that mangroves are important ecosystems worth researching and protecting!