Successful Beach Sweep 2013

On September 28th, Fort Johnson had another successful beach sweep thanks to George Reikerk, the Beach Sweep Coordinator.  Participants included  Grice graduate students, students from James Island Charter and Porter-Gaud high schools, as well as DNR and MUSC staff.  The area covered included Fort Johnson, Grice Beach, and the south end of Morris Island.  All total of 2.3 miles of coastline and 3 boat loads of trash were collected. The trash included 34 bags of trash and usual collection of floats, lumber, boat parts and rope. the This year, Hope Wertz, a Marine Biology graduate student, will be comparing the plastic materials collected with microplastic particles that can be found in our estuarine waters and sediments. You can review a list of what was found: Beach Sweep 2013 summary


Graduate Student Studying Sea Turtles in Costa Rica

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAVanessa Bezy is a Grice Marine Biology graduate student studying the impact of microbes on sea turtles in Ostional, Costa Rica.  She is attempting to raise money for her research and for hiring research assistants that will assist with the project.  Vanessa has set up a campaign online for donations, and she has halfway met her goal.  Earlier this year, Vanessa was also awarded the prestigious Graduate Research Fellowship from the National Science Foundation (NSF GRFP) and will use part of the funding to finish her Masters degree, then will go on to work with Dr. Pamela Plotkin at Texas A&M and work towards her PhD. Donate and read more.

Sargassumfish Joins CORAL Program


A Sargassumfish joins the CORAL (Community OutReach And Learning) program. Histro histrio is a frogfish of the family Antennariidae.  It unique look and prehensile pectoral fins help it hide and cling to sargassum seaweed. This fish is also called the Angler fish. Evolution has modified it’s front spine  to a thin growth on the upper lip called the illicium that is tipped with a fleshy bulb known as the esca. This morphological adaptation is used to lure and ambush  it’s unsuspecting prey.  This creature can change colors rapidly and can consume animals larger that itself. For this reason, our new friend, Fred, will have it own accommodations in the main office.