Earlier this month was the return of Camden Hills Regional High School for their sixth visit to CEI, and Oceanside High School’s second trip alongside Camden. It was another stellar year of exploration, science, research and reflection. DSCF0108Students focused on research during their time at CEI. They were not only getting out there and assisting our resident scientists with their data collection, but also coming back to the lab, sifting through video footage, % cover of seagrass and trying to work out where all the conch have gone. For these students science came alive. They were able to see what goes into real research, where time, weather, tide, and sharing resources play factors into every minute of every day.

Two students IDing some seagrass out in the field

The students final presentations were outstanding. With only three – four field days and approximately 10 hours of data analysis and thought time, they provided the community with well-rounded projects. Not only did they analyze data, they were able to offer thoughtful insights into why their research matters.

The topics studied included assessing the current status of historical Queen conch (Strombus gigas) nurseries in South Eleuthera; Distribution of turtle grass (Thalassia testudinum), and Shark's' effect on green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) populations in South Eleuthera.

The students also got a look into the culture of Eleuthera with an island exploration trip on the 41st anniversary of Bahamian Independence. Students enjoyed local food, culture, and danced into the evening with some kids from the nearby settlement, Savannah Sound, for their homecoming independence extravaganza!

The students were able to reflect on their time spent here at CEI and understand the greater impact of the work they contributed. They left understanding how a sustainable community can live, work and play together on what we consider our remote island of paradise. We look forward to seeing these two amazing schools with some brand new brains and smiles for their seventh trip next summer!