Today we woke up at the same time (me about 10 minutes late since I can’t wake up for my life) and packed our gear for the day. We walked to the commissary to eat breakfast and meet Dr. Gore for a presentation on the 4 different types of sea turtles in the BVI – Loggerhead, Green, Hawksbill, and Leatherback. The presentation talked about the movements of different species, mating and nursing habits, and how endangered each species is. The presentation was really interesting and gave a lot of information on the species we would try to capture only half an hour later. After the presentation, Marine Bio I and II kids got on the taxi where we were taken to the Marina. We all piled onto the boat and took off to Guana Island. On the way over we all fell asleep somehow and after I woke up I took a picture of Julian and Chris passed out (I got permission to post it from both) which was pretty great. We pulled up and anchored near the beach of Guana Island and picked who would try to capture the turtles first. We used an efficient method of searching for turtles known as Manti Tow where snorklers hold onto ropes or life-preservers as they’re pulled by the boat around the bay. For the entire time we were searching, we found no turtles but I still had fun on the snorkel. I put my fins and mask on, jumped into the water, and swam towards the shore. I perused the coast, looking at the massive elkhorn coral structures and looking for anything you ordinarily wouldn’t see. I caught up with Tucker, Gavin, and Alex who were also snorkeling and we swam into a cove that had a school of fish inside. On the cliff walls surrounding the cove there were a few large sea crabs and lizards of various sizes which were really cool. I left the cove by myself and happened to see a rather large lionfish cruising by the reef. I swam back to Alex (who had his spear with him) to tell him about the lionfish and we all swam back as fast as we could. By the time we got there the lionfish had hidden beneath a ledge and we couldn’t find him until about 10 minutes after. Alex found him and tried to spear him a couple of times, but ultimately didn’t kill it. We swam back to the shore, walking around and smashing old coconuts when Alex yelled that there were tarpin in the water. I dove in with my mask and snorkel to see a school of tarpon about 5 feet long and 2 feet wide. Apparently tarpin are pretty common but it still blew my mind. We swam back to the boat and I got to do the Manti Tow with Julian, but we saw nothing besides the small stingray about 10 minutes into the towing. After not having any luck with the turtles, we decided to try another location called White Bay, which was beautiful. On the way over we passed through a section of ocean being heavily rained upon. We all stood at the head of the boat as we were pelted with rain (basically felt like being stabbed 1000 times a second). We got to White Bay where we all snorkeled for about 20 minutes, looking for turtles, but we didn’t see any there either 🙁 I did get a goPro video of my entire snorkel, which covered a lot of really cool stuff. We were called back to the boat where we drove back to the marina for cheeseburgers at the Bath and Turtle. Best burgers ever fo seer. After the burgers Julian, Andrew, and I walked to the grocery store to buy some candy but it was way too expensive. We all piled onto another boat for our dive in Long Bay (where our Jesuit Reef is) and headed over. We get there, I set my gear up, and we get debriefed by Laura on what we’re supposed to be doing. Julian and I dive in and head off by ourselves to measure and photograph the coral fragments we planted almost exactly a year ago. The dynamic duo measured and photographed about 6 different fragments and then swam along with Casey to watch her fix parts of the reef which had been destroyed by idiots who anchored in the wrong spot. I surfaced somewhat early because my ankle hurt and then dove off the boat about 20 times because it was fun. We all got back on board and headed back to the marina. After resurfacing, the rest of the day was pretty routine – driving home, breaking down my gear, packing my stuff up, going home, showering, going to eat and going back home. We did, however, have an interesting conversation with Caitlyn about different types of marine life and the best dives we’d ever been on. Also we met a sassmaster dog named Humpy. After that awesome talk we all walked home. I’m triple pumped for tomorrow even though it’ll be exhausting.