Shark Research with CMERA in Dunedin

Today our 4-H group with out with Coastal Marine Education and Research Academy out of Dunedin. Alan and Moriah provided an excellent education experience full of hands on learning and amazing experiences. We learned a lot about the research and field experience they give to college students. We boarded the research boat and headed out to Anclote Key for some research of our own. 

I didn’t want to touch the bait. So I watched as all my friends helped bait all the hooks for the long line. I did bait the squid on the bait rod eventually. After some waiting we got out first catch! Alan landed a wonderful nurse shark. We got to work with our research. We had to measure, tag, sex and release the shark. All the data is recorded and linked to the tag number on the shark.  B and I got to help release the nurse shark. I was so excited! I absolutely loved the feel of its scales. Back to fishing for bait while we wait for more sharks. I held that pole for an hour and never caught a thing. Whenever Anastasia took the pole she would catch fish after fish…me…nothing! Everyone jumped in for a cool off. I didn’t to. Eventually a friend pushed me in. I wasn’t happy but realized it wasn’t so bad and just dealt with it. I was about to jump back in and the “shark on” call came again. Everyone scrambled out fo the water and to the safety zone. Alan reeled and Moriah netted and brought in a juvenile bonnet head shark. We worked fast to collect the data and get it back into the water. B got to tag the shark for tracking purposes. We finished with the pole fishing and went to get the 2nd long line out of the water. We didn’t think we had anything but the very end of the line we had caught a black tip shark! Alan landed it quickly and we waited a few seconds for it to talk down before we got to work.  Maleah was on water this time. Dominic, because of his strength, got the tail! Miriam was in charge of stabilizing the upper body and pectoral fins. Alan showed us the sharp teeth! Wyatt tagged it. Then Liberty took the tail with Dominic to turn and release it off the boat! We all worked together to get the job done quickly! What a great 4-H group we have! A LITTLE GOOFY TOO! Thanks Alan and Moriah with CMERA for a wonderful and educational day!

Busy September Start

I got my black stripe on my blue belt in karate. B and I have been having fun hanging out. We had a fun 4-H meeting about ukulele playing. I really love to play around with the music. Mom took us to Disney for a few days while dad was out of town in California. We had fun in the new Toy Story Land. I loved the new Slinky Dog Coaster. I was not impressed with standing in the long line for the Toy Story Mania game, the wait was only 5 minutes. Mom told me it was an hour! We went to AK in the afternoon for Flametree BBQ, safari and other fun. It was miserably hot. Until, I decided to dump water on B over and over. He did the same for me. It helped us cool off! I love my new popcorn bucket. We got on Flights of Passage in about 35 minutes! The parks were EMPTY! We stayed at a hotel and then next morning opted for Magic Kingdom and the boat over was EMPTY! Even Main Street was barren. We loved all the halloween decorations. My name came up on the goodbye screens on Small World. I found a fun hemiptera on the way to EPCOT. Monorail fun!

We had a blast. So much fun that when Dad got back from California we went back for another day of fun. I swam at the hotel for about 4 hours. 

I rode Tower of Terror and Mission Space for the first time! I really enjoyed them! We had a lot of fun as a family. It was nice to have Dad with us for exploring the parks! I was SO exhausted the next day I couldn’t keep my eyes open for school. Civics kept putting me to sleep!