The CCFS Hosts Student Volunteer Training in MBRS Survey Methodologies and Herbarium Specimen Collec
In late May the ERI hosted 6 student volunteers at the Calabash Caye Field Station for training in MBRS survey methodologies. The MBRS, short for Meso- American Barrier Reef System, extends from the Yucatan Peninsula all the way to the Bay Islands of Honduras and includes Belize’s own barrier reef, the second longest in the world. Every year around the month of June, with the assistance of student volunteers the ERI conduct MBRS surveys. These surveys are conducted at the Turneffe Atoll to provide data in order to assess the status of the system.
On May 26th, led by ERI’s Marine Biologist, Celso Cawich and Marine Field Technician, Jani Salazar, the students set out to the CCFS to start training. Involved in the training were long time volunteers, Farron Louriano, Ryan Zuniga, Monique Lamb, Moises Barrientos and Jennelle Griffith. The training focused on the different methodologies involved in surveying the different parameters of the MBRS which include Seagrass, Corals, Fish, Mangroves and Diadema urchins.
While the MBRS survey training was taking place, ERI Botanist, German Lopez was also on the caye conducting a training of his own. German was tasked with training Research and Education Officer,
Corinne Klein along with the CCFS’ interns, Travis and Stephany in the proper techniques as it relates to plant specimen collection. The training was focused on teaching the volunteers how to collect quality plant specimens and how to properly dry them for herbarium storage. Proper collection facilitates the identification process. This training was important since the team of volunteers led by Corinne will soon be conducting a biodiversity survey of Calabash Caye.