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Helping to Sustain a Way of Life in the Bahamas

The next generation

By Catherine | 16 September 2012 | No Comments
Published in Outreach, Uncategorized

In many schools throughout The Bahamas, teachers and students are starting out this year with a greater knowledge of a beloved marine resource, the queen conch. Thanks to efforts by Bahamian conservation organizations that decided to put special focus on conchs in their summer camps and workshops, the next generation will know more about the biology and ecology of the species, as well as the threats to its survival. Summer camps for kids were held on the islands of New Providence, Andros, Abaco, Grand Bahama, San Salvador, and Eleuthera. On Andros, the Bahamas National Trust (BNT) held a special “Conch-servation” Eco Camp.  The Bahamas Reef Environment Educational Foundation (BREEF) and Friends of the Environment also held camps that included lessons on conch and marine conservation. Several teacher-training opportunities offered by the BNT and BREEF gave the country’s educators a chance to get hands-on experience and add a few conch-related activities to their classroom repertoire. Community Conch was able to attend several of these workshops to present our research and discuss conch conservation with the teachers. At BREEF’s annual marine conservation teacher training workshop we piloted a citizen-science program that will help raise awareness about the illegal and unsustainable harvest of juvenile conch. The camps, workshops, and citizen-science project are all part of an effort to bring conch conservation to the forefront in The Bahamas.  You’ll be hearing more about an organized campaign in the coming months. In the meantime, check out the pictures below and don’t forget check out our Facebook page for conch news updates.

 

Alannah Vellacott teaches kids how to measure lip thickness of a conch shell at BREEF’s Sea Camp on Eleuthera.

d’Shan Maycock of Friends of the Environment reviews the conch life cycle at their summer camp on Abaco.

Campers present their own conch research at the Bahamas National Trust’s Eco Camp on Andros.

Leaders of the Bahamas National Trust Discovery Club watch a video on conch conservation at their annual workshop.

Bianca Green (BNT), Jackie Chisolm-Lightbourne (College of The Bahamas), and Casuarina McKinney Lambert (BREEF) talk conch anatomy at the BREEF marine conservation teacher training workshop.

Teachers participate in the pilot of a citizen-science project designed to raise awareness about the illegal and unsustainable harvest of juvenile conch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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DID YOU KNOW?

adult conch

A Queen Conch flares its shell lip at 3-4 years, but it may take 6 years to reach sexual maturity.

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