The winter full moon is just a few weeks away, and that means REEF scientists and research partners are gearing up to study endangered Nassau Grouper spawning aggregations in the Cayman Islands. 2024 marks the 22nd year of the Grouper Moon Project, a collaborative research effort between REEF, the Cayman Islands Department of Environment (DoE), and scientists at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego and Oregon State University, aimed at studying one of the largest and last known spawning aggregations of endangered Nassau Grouper. REEF has developed Grouper Moon educator resources to engage students with this amazing natural phenomenon, and help them understand the ecological and cultural importance of Nassau Grouper as a top predator on Caribbean coral reefs. To date, REEF’s Grouper Education Program has been implemented in 25 schools and 95 unique classrooms, and reached approximately 3,000 students in the Cayman Islands, The Bahamas, Turks & Caicos Islands, the US, and the UK. For more info, check out the Grouper Moon Project Educator resources page here.

You can join in live-from-the-field webchats with scientists studying the Nassau Grouper aggregations in the Cayman Islands. There are three livestream sessions scheduled, including:

• Monday, January 29: Gathering Groupers - Updates from the field featuring Grouper Moon scientists
• Tuesday, January 30: Scientific and Research Technology and Tools - Exploring diverse pathways to becoming a scientist
• Thursday, February 1: Underwater Dive! Life on a Spawning Aggregation - Talk with a scientist underwater in Bloody Bay Wall, Little Cayman

All livestreams will take place at 10:30am EST. It’s free to join in, and livestreams will be broadcast on REEF's YouTube channel.