Aquatic Species Collection Workshops

I hope the start of the school year has been going well for everyone. We have a lot of opportunities for this month including one I’ve been personally involved in and can’t recommend more; so, we’ll start with that one.

Climate Training


I participated over a year ago in the National Network for Ocean and Climate Change Interpretation (NNOCCI) course and can’t say more than enough good things about it. Classroom teachers I’ll stop you right here though so I don’t waste any more of your time; unfortunately, this is a program for informal education institutions, so you may as well skip to the following items which will apply to you.

As for the rest of you that are still with me this program not only gave me great information on climate change research but even more invaluable were the tools it gave to help share this information with others in a way that is easier to understand and accept. These tools, strategic framing, are not just for climate change either and helped me to reevaluate how I present all my programs. Not only do you get all this great information but it is also all expenses paid for travel to the trainings (there are three of them) and even better your institution gets a $3000 stipend just for your participation. The study circle is a cross-disciplinary learning group made up of peers with expertise from fields of professional interpretation, climate and ocean sciences and communications, and cultural sciences.  It is intended for pairs of staff members from informal learning centers such as zoos, aquariums, science centers, National Parks, natural preserves, and other institutions that are or want to incorporate climate education into their facility. If you have any other questions about it don’t hesitate to contact me but let me cut to the chase and tell you how to sign up for this great opportunity. Visit or for more information and to apply. Applications are due by September 19, so don’t delay. Please encourage colleagues to apply and share with your own networks. Contact for more information.

Ag Grant

So now one just for classroom teachers since I left you out of the previous post. Though it might not be directly marine science it can definitely be correlated.
Florida Farm Bureau Federation is offering multiple $250 mini-grants to certified Florida educators who are engaged in classroom instruction at the pre-K to 12th grade levels for the 2014-15 school year. The grants will be awarded for up to $250 for original and creative activities or programs that increase the understanding of agriculture among both students and educators.

“Agriculture has no subject boundaries,” said Florida Farm Bureau Women’s Leadership Coordinator Michael Rogalsky. “We encourage teachers to think outside the box when integrating agriculture into their curriculum. Subject areas such as social studies, math, language arts and science are all important to agriculture and teachers that build agriculture into these subjects are encouraged to apply for the grant.”

Grant applications are due Oct. 1. Recipients of the grant will be notified no later than Nov. 15 via email. Educators can apply for the grant by visiting

Joint Regional Outing

Interested in making a trip to the west coast? The North Region has an outing planned that is open to any FMSEA members. Join us on September 13th, 2014 from 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM at 12646 W Fort Island Trail, Crystal River, FL for a multi-regional outing.

We will be snorkeling in the gin-clear waters of the Gulf through outstanding seagrass meadows, sponge beds, and hardbottom areas. Lunch will be provided. Please bring the following items: bathing suit, towel, sunscreen, hat, reusable water bottle, mask, fin, snorkel (*Snorkel vests will be provided). Sign up today, there are 25 spots!

Check out the Marine Science Station at

Questions? Email Ernie Olsen at

To RSVP use the following link and fill out the Google form here. Also, if you would be interested in a van pool to the outing please email me at and I’ll see about arranging one if we have enough interest.

We hope to see you there!

Fish in Your Classroom

Ever wanted to collect fish to use for education? There are two aquatic species collection workshops coming up that will give you the FWC permit to do just that. There is one in our region in Volusia County on September 10, and one just outside of it in Polk County on October 5, and I’m teaching both of them. The cost is $25 and the certificate is good for 3 years. For more information and to register click the links above.


There are several Florida Master Naturalist Programs going on in our region this fall. Just click on the links below to get more information on each class and to register.

Setpember 18, Uplands in Indian River County

October 10, Conservation Science in Brevard County

November 10, Wetlands in Brevard County

Budding Film Makers


The aim of the Beneath the Waves Youth Making Ripples film festival and competition is to engage K-12 students in marine science education, and to highlight the importance of scientific research related to ocean and coastal communities.  Educators and students are challenged to incorporate film into their curriculum by adopting a hands-on approach to marine science education using 21st century technology.  This years festival is open for submissions. Last year’s winners received cash prizes (up to $200) and this year we are excited to announce our partnership with Scuba Pro who has generously donated snorkel gear for the winners. Students should submit short films (< 5 minutes) on any marine science topic of their choice.  The deadline for submission is December 5, 2014. Guidelines and rules can be found at or email us at

Focus on Water

The Barrier Island Center has many programs focusing on their topic this month “Restoring Our Waters’ Quality“. Check out the whole list of events for September here.

International Coastal Cleanup

The annual International Coastal Cleanup is September 20, 2014, but events are scheduled at different times in many locations.  It is the largest volunteer effort for the ocean and waterways.  Sign up, search for a cleanup near you, download debris reports, and more. For the ones in Brevard County check out the flyer here.

Get Kids Outside,

For those teachers who are having trouble getting funding for field trips, or informal institutions who have seen your programs attendance dropping for the same reason, check out the following grant to help fund field trips.

The Target Field Trip Grants Program allows teachers to offer valuable experiential learning gained from field trips to enhance students’ classroom studies.  Funds may be used to cover cost of transportation, entry fees, supplies and equipment, and resource materials. The deadline for application is September 30, 2014.

Art with Wyland

The theme of the 2014 Wyland National Mural and Art Challenge is Ocean.  Wyland Foundation and partners will provide grants of art supplies to K-12 schools in 100 cities for the challenge, so register early.  The deadline for entry is November 25, 2014.

Wild About Whales

The University of Florida hosts a fourth grade cetacean/right whale curriculum, developed in cooperation with NOAA Fisheries and Sea Grant.  Be sure to check out the rest of the education resource links, including a manatee curriculum and more.

Exploring Atlantic Canyons and Seamounts 2014

From August 9-August 30, 2014, NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer conducted a mapping expedition in the North Atlantic in Veatch Canyon and along the New England Seamount chain.   From September 4-October 7, 2014, scientists aboard the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer will explore the diversity of benthic habitats and features in this region.  Read about the August mission and check back for upcoming details about the upcoming expedition.

What’s that Bird

Have you been in the field and wondered what bird you were looking at. Cornell Lab is now here to help. The Merlin Bird ID app for iOS7 and Android OS4 devices is available for free from the Cornell Lab.  It asks five simple questions about the bird seen and then gives a short list of the most likely possibilities.  The app currently covers 400 species, and has 2,000 photos and 1,000 songs and calls to help you confirm your ID. Just one warning though, it is a 605 MB app so make sure you have room on your device before installing.

Water Water Everywhere

World Water Monitoring Day is September 18, 2014.  Join Philippe Cousteau Jr. and EarthEcho as they  kick off the World Water Monitoring Challenge.  Students can interact with Philippe and youth from South America as they demonstrate how to conduct water testing and discuss the importance of water around the globe through a World Water Monitoring Day Hangout.  Order low-cost monitoring kits, check out the educator resources, sign up for the hangout, and more.

Hello FMSEA members, here is an update for the Southwest Region (Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Glades, Hendry, Lee, Collier). Remember, if there are events in our region that you’d like to see promoted here, please let me know. Also, if you are having an event and would like someone from FMSEA represented there, I can help you with that too. Thanks.

Jason Robertshaw
FMSEA Southwest Regional Director
rd-southwest @
941-388-4441 x 250


Southwest Region Outing – November 1, 2014

Join us on Saturday, November 1 for a Southwest Regional Outing. There will be an Aquatic Species Collection Workshop at Mote Marine Laboratory in the morning from 9 am–11 am. We will then explore the Sarasota Bay Waterfest at Ken Thompson Park from 12pm–4pm.

Sarasota County – Community Foundation of Sarasota County Exploration Grant

The Community Foundation of Sarasota County has Exploration grant funding available for the 2013-2014 school year. Grants are available to teachers to fund explorations. These funds can cover the cost of the exploration for students, transportation, sub costs (if one is necessary) and other costs directly linked to the Exploration.

FMSEA Annual Conference 2015

Next year’s conference location has been announced. Join us from April 30–May 3, 2015 for FMSEA 2015–TAMPA BAY: VISION OF THE PAST, KEY TO THE FUTURE. Visit to check for details and contact Heather Segura if you’d like to volunteer (


Charlotte Harbor – Seagrass Wading Trip to Cedar Point Park

* WHERE: Cedar Point Environmental Park, 2300 Placida Rd, Englewood, FL 34224
* WHEN: Friday, September 5, 2014, 9 am–11:30 am
* DESCRIPTION: Get wild & wet! Join CHEC at Cedar Point Environmental Park on a Seagrass Adventure Wading Trip into Lemon Bay in search of marine organisms such as sea horse, crabs and juvenile fish.
*REGISTER: Free but registration required. Call 941-475-0769

Sarasota Bay Guardians–Pond & Butterfly Garden Planting

* WHERE: The Florida Maritime Museum, 4415 119th St W, Cortez, FL 34215
* WHEN: September 27, 2014
* DESCRIPTION: Sarasota Bay Guardians is a family-friendly volunteer program that SBEP manages in partnership with Around the Bend Nature Tours. The SBEP Bay Guardian program was established to engage residents of all ages in the ongoing efforts to restore and protect Sarasota Bay. It also provides participants with an opportunity to learn and make new connections with other individuals who care about Sarasota Bay habitat and wildlife.
*REGISTER: Sara Kane at (941) 955-8085 or,

Aquatic Species Collection Workshop

* WHERE: Mote Marine Laboratory, Sarasota, FL
* WHEN: Saturday, November 1, 2014, 9:00–11:00 am
* DESCRIPTION: The workshop is available to certified Florida teachers and/or eligible employees of educational centers. The primary workshop objective is to promote best practices in the collection and maintenance of aquatic organisms for educational activities. Upon successful completion of the training workshop, a participant receives a certification that is authorized by both FMSEA and Commission representatives and valid for 3 years.
*REGISTER: $25, online registration

Sarasota Waterfest 2014

* WHERE: Ken Thompson Park, Sarasota, FL
* WHEN: Saturday, November 1, 2014, 10:00 am–4:00 pm
* DESCRIPTION: Join the fun celebration of the importance of Sarasota Bay to the region’s environment, economy and quality of life featuring live music and the “aqua-garde” fashion show. The party will help raise donations for Sea to Shore Alliance and Save Our Seabirds. Also NEW for 2014 is a Pet Zone with pet-loving exhibitors and giveaways.

2014 Youth Ocean Conservation Summit

* WHERE: Mote Marine Laboratory, Sarasota, FL
* WHEN: Saturday, November 8, 2014
* DESCRIPTION: Students of all ages can work with their peers, adult mentors, marine scientists and conservationists to learn about threats to ocean ecosystems and get a chance to develop their own ocean conservation projects. A variety of workshops and trainings will give them the skills necessary for success. Students will network and learn about careers in the marine science field from a variety of conservation organizations.

Bring the Ocean into You Classroom

We have two Aquatic Species Collection Workshops coming up in our Region. One in Brevard County, on August 9, and one in Volusia County on September 10. After completion you will receive a permit that will allow you to collect marine and freshwater fish and invertebrates for educational use in your classroom. The permit is $25 and good for three years. You can find more information on the classes and register on the links above.

Restore a Shore

FWC and partners are restoring a saltmarsh on FWC property in New Smyrna Beach. Here are the details on the upcoming Saturday events for volunteers:

When: August 9 and 23, Sept 6 and 20 from 9:00am to 1:00pm…rain or shine (plants like both!)

What: planting native species within and along the newly-restored saltmarsh, viewing mountain, and amphitheater. We have plants of various sizes but most are 8-18inches and easy to handle. The work is moderately strenuous and involves walking in uneven, sandy (sometimes wet) terrain.

Who: participants must be a minimum of 10yrs of age. Anyone between the ages of 10 and 16 must have signature from a parent or guardian the day of the event at sign-in.

Where: FWC’s Mosquito Lagoon Marine Enhancement Center (home of Marine Discovery Center) at the end of Barracuda Blvd. along the north causeway in New Smyrna Beach (520 Barracuda Blvd., New Smyrna Beach, FL 32169). Follow the signs the day of the event to park in the west parking lot.

How: just bring clothes that can get dirty, closed-toe shoes that you don’t mind getting wet and dirty, gloves, shovels (especially drain spade and handheld spade types), sunscreen/hat/water in a reusable bottle, wheelbarrow (if you have one), a great attitude, and we’ll show you the rest. Please label your tools to avoid confusion.

Why: could be fun, our native species need your help, to get outdoors, to see the new features at the site (see the progress happening in the picture below).

If you are interested in attending, RSVP John-Paul at Please include the names of the people attending, their ages, e-mail address, and contact phone number.

Live Sustainably

The Brevard County Extension Office will host an eight week program on Wednesdays starting August 20, about sustainable living strategies. The cost of the program is $30 and covers all materials and one Saturday field trip. Find out more information on the flyer here.

Bring the Keys to your Computer

NOAA Ocean Exploration Webinar for Educators – Coral Ecosystem Connectivity Expedition 2014: Pulley Ridge to the Florida Keys

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA’s) Office of Ocean Exploration and Research invites formal and informal educators to participate in a webinar to introduce educational resources developed for an ocean exploration mission to the coral reef ecosystems off of southwest Florida.

From August 14-28, 2014, ocean explorers will be investigating relationships between shallow water coral reefs and deeper, twilight zone (or mesophotic) coral reef ecosystems of the southwest coast of Florida. Scientists are working to better understand the role that these relatively healthy mesophotic reefs may play in replenishing key fish species and other organisms in the downstream reefs of the Florida Keys and Dry Tortugas. Fieldwork will include characterizing the benthic habitat and fish communities using a remotely operated vehicle and deploying drifters to measure currents. Both genetic and ecosystem connectivity will be investigated with the goal of developing new strategies for managing and protecting shallow and deeper water coral ecosystems.

This 60-minute webinar will provide an introduction to the science behind the expedition and the associated Education Expedition Module, including lessons and other resources to enable you and your students to delve more deeply into the expedition and follow along with us online. Resources presented will be archived for use during the upcoming academic year.

Image: Example of corals and algae found on Pulley Ridge. Photo Credit: M. Echevarria, Florida Aquarium.

This cruise is part of a multi-year partnership between OER, AOML, FMFS, NOS’ National Marine Sanctuary Program and Center for Sponsored Coastal Ocean Research, and two NOAA Cooperative Institutes: the Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies (CIMAS) and the Cooperative Institute for Ocean Exploration, Research, and Technology (CIOERT).

Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

Questions? Contact Susan Haynes,

Title: NOAA Ocean Exploration Webinar for Educators – Coral Ecosystem Connectivity Expedition 2014: Pulley Ridge to the Florida Keys
Date: Thursday, August 7, 2014
Time: 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM EDT
After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.

Southwest Region Update–June 2014

by Dana 2014/06/01 Regional Reports

Hello FMSEA members, here is an update for the Southwest Region (Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Glades, Hendry, Lee, Collier). Remember, if there are events in our region that you’d like to see promoted here, please let me know. Also, if you are having an event and would like someone from FMSEA represented there, I can help […]

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Collection Workshop–Big Pine Key–3/8/2014

by Kathy 2014/02/16 The Dip Net (Aquatic Species Collections Workshop)

WHAT Aquatic Species Collecting Workshop WHEN Date: 3/8/2014 Start time: 11:00 am End time 1:00 pm WHERE Facility name: Seacamp Association, Inc Address: 1300 Big Pine Avenue, Big Pine Key, FL 33043 DESCRIPTION Contact: Judy Gregoire Phone Number: 305-872-2331 x 238 Email: info @ Registration and info: The workshop cost is $25.00. Make […]

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Collection Workshop–Naples–3/8/2014

by Kathy 2014/01/29 The Dip Net (Aquatic Species Collections Workshop)

WHAT Aquatic Species Collecting Workshop WHEN Date: 3/8/2014 Start time 9:00 am End time 11:00 am WHERE Facility name: Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve Address: 300 Tower Road, Naples, FL 34113 DESCRIPTION Contact: Dave Graff Phone Number: 239-530-5970 Email: Registration and info: The workshop cost is $25.00. Make checks out to FMSEA. […]

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Regional Update–Southwest–January 2014

by Dana 2014/01/27 Regional Reports

FMSEA SOUTHWEST REGIONAL UPDATE – JANUARY 2014 Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Glades, Hendry, Lee, Collier HAPPY NEW YEAR! Here is an update for the Southwest Region featuring events from Sarasota County Schools, Charlotte Harbor National Estuary Program, Bay Guardians, Mote Marine Laboratory and more. Remember, if there are events in our region that you’d like to […]

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FMSEA West Central Regional Outing and Aquatic Species Collection Workshop

by George 2013/12/04 West Central

Join us for a day on the water and in the classroom! FMSEA member? Bring a friend to check out or organization! Not a member? Come find out what you’re missing! Join us for a West Central Regional Outing and Aquatic Species Collection workshop! The morning outing will include the a kayak mangrove tour and […]

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Collection Workshop—Tierra Verde—12/14/13

by Kathy 2013/11/08 The Dip Net (Aquatic Species Collections Workshop)

WHAT Aquatic Species Collecting Workshop WHEN Date: 12/14/13 Start time: 1:00 am End time: 3:00 pm WHERE Facility name: Tampa Bay Watch Address: 3000 Pinellas Bayway S., Tierra Verde, FL 33715 DESCRIPTION Contact: Jenna Cummings Phone Number: (727) 521-5922 Email: rd-westcentral @ REGISTER Register for the workshop The workshop cost is $25.00. Make checks […]

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Regional Report–Southwest

by Dana 2013/11/06 Regional Reports

Greetings Hello FMSEA members, here is an update for the Southwest Region (Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Glades, Hendry, Lee, Collier). Remember, if there are events in our region that you’d like to see promoted here, please let me know. Also, if you are having an event and would like someone from FMSEA represented there, I can […]

More →