On Sunday October 16th, Christina Pasparakis, Rachael Heuer, Yadong Wang, Dan DiNicola, and Emma Esch from the RECOVER team participated at the 2016 Coconut Grove Seafood Festival Ecodiscovery Zone presented by Celebration of the Seas Foundation.
“The Coconut Grove Seafood Festival is all about celebrating seafood, waterfront living and giving people their fill of the freshest, tastiest delicacies of the sea. Bushels of shrimp, oysters, crawfish, lobster, clams and fresh fish will soon overflow in Miami, just in time for the opening of stone crab season in October.” The festival also offers live music and local artist exhibitions to draw in the Miami masses.
The event also presented an Ecodiscovery Zone in the center of the festival for visitors to learn about marine and environmental issues pressing to the local communities. Joining RECOVER in this area, was fellow GoMRI consortium CARTHE, along with the University of Miami Shark Tagging and Rescue a Reef programs.
Early morning thunderstorms parted once the gates opened and hundreds of hungry guests came piling in the festival grounds. At the Ecodiscovery Zone, the groups were able to share their research and knowledge with attendees including displaying live samples of mahi embryos and corals and decorating their own drift plates to track ocean currents. For RECOVER, it was a unique opportunity to educate people about a species of fish that was readily available to eat at many of the vendor tents. Visitors at these kinds of outreach activities are always fascinated to learn how fast mahi grow, and as a result, how it contributes to a sustainable fish population.
View some of our photos below!