All posts tagged: ocean lover

What You Need To Know About Turtle Nesting Season In The Cayman Islands

The Cayman Islands was originally named “Las Tortugas” in 1503 by Christopher Columbus, due to the abundance of turtles found in our waters.  Five hundred years later, turtles are still one of the most beloved and iconic animals in the Cayman Islands.  There are three species of turtles that can be found in the Cayman Islands: the critically endangered Hawksbill Sea Turtle, the endangered Green Sea Turtle, and the vulnerable Loggerhead Sea Turtle.  Sea turtles are a strong symbol for the Cayman Islands and need support through protection and conservation.  That being said, during Turtle Nesting Season it is vital that turtles and their nests are kept safe and not disturbed, so that hatchlings (baby turtles) are able to make their way to the water.   Some simple ways the community can help protect turtles during nesting season include keeping the beaches clean of litter and keeping nesting beaches dark and safe for turtles. Homes in popular nesting areas are asked to keep blinds closed and to use ‘turtle friendly lighting.’ This attractive amber lighting …

A Day in the Life of an Ocean Conservationist with GHOF’s Louisa Gibson

Louisa Gibson is a local ocean conservationist working at Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation (GHOF).  Growing up in the Cayman Islands Louisa has great respect for marine life, coral reefs, and the ocean.  This great appreciation for the ocean has instilled in her a strong desire to protect it.  Her strong connection to the ocean inspired her to pursue a degree in Animal Biology and a Master’s in Environmental Protection and Management with a focus on marine systems.  Through working with the GHOF, Louisa has had incredible opportunities to dive all over the globe.  Notably, a trip to Mexico to swim with whale sharks.  While in Costa Rica, Louisa swam with spotted dolphins and pilot whales.  For many, this is an adventure of a lifetime, but for Louisa, it is just another day at the office.   Interview with Louisa Gibson 1.  What is your role at the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation? I am the Development Coordinator for the GHOF. My primary responsibility is to raise the funds necessary to support our research and educational initiatives …

Welcome To Sharkphoria

What is Sharkphoria? Sharkphoria is a science based Patreon channel dedicated to creating shark awareness and to share marine biology content through videos. The person behind Sharkphoria and creator of the videos is a marine biologist and shark researcher, Johanna Kohler, based in the Cayman Islands. As part of the non-profit collaboration, Shark Conservation Cayman, Johanna studies the local shark population which is also part of her PhD. Her shark research interests include shark behaviour and ecology, shark reproduction and human-shark conflict mitigation. By becoming a Sharkphoria Patron, anyone can now step into Johanna’s world and join her on the journey to a PhD in shark research as she is not only sharing fun, science based shark video tutorials, but also exclusive insights and first hand experiences. Sharks are one of the most misunderstood creatures.  Many people fear sharks as a result of blockbuster movies and sensationalizing media.  Media, which continues to give sharks a negative reputation, doesn’t help.  According to Johanna, sharks are not something to be feared, but rather respected. What is truly …

Sharkwater Extinction Review

We are honoured to have a guest post written by Julia Barnes. I was a little nervous to watch Sharkwater Extinction. I knew it would make me emotional. Rob Stewart has been my hero since I was 12. Losing him was devastating and I didn’t want to relive his death. But I was also excited to see his new film, so I attended the premier at TIFF. Hearing his voice and seeing him on the screen, I found myself smiling all the way through. Sharkwater Extinction is not a sad film. It is overwhelmingly inspiring, filled with Rob’s passion and energy. It’s a film that will make you realize you can change the world. Rob’s voice is a constant throughout the movie. His narration guides you through the story as he and his team investigate the trade in endangered shark species, uncovering corruption, deception, and mafia rings. There are plenty of dangerous, heart-pounding moments. At one point Rob goes into a ship’s freezer, alone, with a camera, to film piles of dead sharks. It would …

Shark Conservation Cayman in a Nutshell

Who are we? Shark Conservation Cayman is a collaboration between the Department of Environment and Marine Conservation International, supported by the White Tip Conservation Fund from the Cayman Islands Brewery.  Together with a network of volunteers, the team is working towards a better understanding of our local shark populations. Shark Conservation Cayman and fellow collaborators work in Cayman to study and monitor our local sharks and improve conservation management in the Cayman Islands. So how do we do that? In order to protect sharks we need to study and understand their behaviour and life characteristics and use what we’ve learnt to raise awareness in local communities around the importance of sharks to healthy reefs and our Cayman marine environment. Since sharks are highly mobile animals with the whole ocean to roam in, studying them is no easy feat. In Cayman we use multiple, complementary methods one of which is “Acoustic Telemetry”. This means we tag a shark with an acoustic tag. Then, by utilizing a network of receivers located around the three Islands, we pick up …

Meet Our Local Sharks & The People Protecting Them

The Caribbean is famous for being a paradise, rich in colour, biodiverse coral reefs and an abundance of marine life including sharks.  A healthy population of sharks is an indicator of a healthy reef ecosystem and is valuable not only for our marine environment but also for the tourism industry and our economy.  The Cayman Islands is one of the most popular diving destinations in the world and people travel from all over to experience our world renowned underwater world but also for the opportunity to see a shark(s) on their dive.  A survey in 2011 showed that sharks are worth more alive than dead in Cayman. The economic value of an alive shark was estimated to be about US$54 million per year.  So not only do sharks help keep the balance in the marine environment but also add to our islands economy.  The survey also showed that even if tourists don’t want to see sharks while swimming, they do want to know that there is a healthy shark population in Cayman as it is …