R/V Garvin and crew just returned from a research expedition to the west side of Andros, in the Bahamas. The research trip transported researchers from Florida State University, the FSU Coastal & Marine Lab, and NOAA collaborated for a joint sawfish and sea turtle expedition, seeking to gather data about local populations of these amazing species. Although blustery winter weather limited the number of field days, researchers were still able to collect valuable scientific data from these remote tropical ecosystems. While the critically endangered smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata) eluded the elasmobranch crew on this trip, their team successfully deployed and retrieved acoustic receivers, and were able to catch and sample over 80 sharks! Despite windy conditions, the sea turtle crew was also able to catch and sample numbers of both green (Chelonia mydas) and loggerhead (Caretta caretta) turtles! Overall, it was a great trip which reminded us why we always look forward to expeditions to this remote and beautiful area!
The Independent has coverage of a 2015 paper (which Catherine and Julia helped to co-author) arguing that the International Game Fishing Association (IGFA) should stop taking weight-based recreational fishing record bids for fish species which are threatened and endangered. It's a low cost, easy way to reduce fishing pressure on the largest and most ecologically important individuals from fish species at risk. Read the coverage, or check out the original paper here!
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