Day 2


Today we went on two dives, one for fun and the other for our research projects, my group’s focusing on the relationship between blue tang behavior and reef health. Our first dive was on wreck alley where we explored two sunken boats that were both artificial reefs. Swimming around the first boat, I saw a lionfish for the first time in a reef beside the boat. Lionfish are invasive species without any common predators in the Caribbean. As such, they are very dangerous to the native fish species, and people are encouraged to spear them on sight. The lionfish I saw was striped black and white, similar to how a zebra is striped. As I approached it, I noticed its poisonous barbs were spread out and I took that as a warning to stay away. Leaving the lionfish behind, I neared the second boat which had sunk upside down. Our dive master Jeff told us that the boat was intended to sink right side up, but as it was sinking it turned a little and ended up flipping entirely. Because it was flipped, there was a space on the bottom of the boat (technically the upside down top) to swim through. While swimming through this around eight foot tall space, I looked around and saw algae clinging to the rusted metal. Following the wreck dive, we took a break before working on our research project. Our project entailed tallying the number of blue tang we noticed swimming in a group and by themselves within a twenty by twenty foot area on a healthy reef. We hoped to notice more blue tang in groups on the healthy reef but our data came back with the exact opposite results. Instead of seeing groups of blue tang, we noticed many individuals. This unexpected data prompted us to change our research goal later in the day. After the second dive, we headed back to the Guavaberry Springs beach for lunch and a day of competition between cabins. The beach competition involved activities such as relays and water balloon dodgeball to determine which cabins received bragging rights and a set of prizes. Unfortunately, our cabin finished overall last but came close on every event. Next, we headed to Mass at a Church that was on a tall hilltop overlooking the bay. The sermon was about letting God in your life and understanding how he can help you achieve anything. Following Mass we had dinner on top of The Baths and watched fire dancers weave through flames. To end the day, we reviewed our earlier research project with Jeff and decided we needed to change a few details. The main reason for our change was that blue tang liked to migrate and it would be too hard to collect accurate data on blue tang within a small square area. Though our initial research had its faults, I am confident that we will make the necessary adjustments to create a more sound project. Overall, today was packed with enjoyable activity, and I am excited to continue improving upon our research and see what the next day has in store.