Recently in patch reef we learned about the internal and external anatomy of red lionfish. We had an example lionfish dissected for us and we learned about how the different organs work inside the lionfish and their function. It was a good lesson in fish anatomy. We studied lionfish because they are an invasive species in The Bahamas, so catching lionfish increases survival of native fish. Afterwards, we went to our patch reef research sites in Rock Sound and recorded the fish species and abundance of fish we observed. In the field, we observe one patch reef at a time. In order to minimize double counts of a single fish, we observe the reef in an “S” pattern over the top and then explore underneath the reef. However, there is no full-proof way to not have any double counts. The best we can do is decrease the possibility of counting an individual twice. Some responsibilities we have on the water include boat chores. These tasks can range from preparing the engine to dropping the anchor. After our surveys, we returned to school to input the data that we collected into REEF.org.
– Damian Bleiberg