Sun, Surf, Sand and Science! RECOVER goes to Tortuga Music Festival

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RECOVER went a little bit country at Rock the Ocean’s Tortuga Music Festival in Fort Lauderdale, a three-day beachside concert raising awareness for ocean conservation issues. This years chart-topping headliners included Blake Shelton, Dierks Bentley, Tim McGraw and Lynyrd Skynyrd and drew in a crowd of over 90,000 people from 16 countries.

In addition to being a premiere concert event, Tortuga seamlessly and successfully blends entertainment and science education. In years past, Rock the Ocean has raised $250,000 for marine and ocean research and conservation organizations. This year 30 organizations joined the Conservation Village to educate and inspire change in festivalgoers.

This was RECOVER’s first time participating in the Conservation Village and festival attendees were extremely interested and willing to learn about our research. We were able to speak with more than 2,000 country music fans over the course of the weekend. Those who stopped by the booth were able to look at three-day-old mahi-mahi under microscopes and examine oil spill samples collected from the Deepwater Horizon site. Many visitors were local recreational and commercial fishermen and were fascinated to learn more about one of their favorite fish to catch. We also held an Instagram raffle for a signed print of Screaming Reels donated by our friends at Saltwater Brewery.

Our team was also lucky enough to have a fantastic group of local volunteers come out, work the booth, and help spread our science while at the festival. Many of which did not have a background in science, but became experts and advocates themselves by the end of the weekend.

Check out our facebook for more pictures from the weekend!

 


“Science on Tap” RECOVER at Saltwater Brewery

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A can of craft beer emblazoned with a powerful image of a bull mahi-mahi. Called the Screaming Reels IPA, it is a signature beer from Saltwater Brewery in Delray Beach, Florida. This microbrewery is merging the active fishing lifestyle with its delicious craft beers – a combination that works well in an ocean-centric south Florida.

On March 24th Saltwater Brewery hosted RECOVER at their brewery tasting room in Delray Beach. Dr. Martin Grosell, Dr. Georgina Cox, and Ph.D. students Lela Schlenker and Christina Pasparakis gave a series of short presentations on their research to an enthusiastic and diverse crowd. The team brought with them a working swim chamber, which functions like a fish treadmill. In the lab, these swim chambers collect data on how fish swim and respond under different conditions. The RECOVER team also brought live mahi-mahi embryos and larvae to view under microscopes, providing attendees an opportunity to see the very familiar local-fish in a new way.

After the presentations, Saltwater Brewery’s co-founder, Peter Agardy, gave the RECOVER team a personal tour of the brewery facility and to see first hand how they brew and can their beers.

Saltwater Brewery staff has previous visited the University of Miami’s hatchery facility where mahi-mahi are bred and raised in captivity for research.

To learn more about Saltwater Brewery visit their website and follow them on social media for special beer release information.