Summer is becoming a fishy memory as we get ready for back to school and fall. Here in the Keys that could mean some trying to reason with hurricane season moments but we will still get some great survey dives in.

Speaking of great survey dives – Paul Humann and Ned DeLoach recently added fish to their life list – yes you read correctly ADDED FISH TO THEIR LIFE LIST!! Read all about their adventures with Bill Tewes in St. Vincent with 40 avid REEF Surveyors and a 2 week total of over 261 species sighted – now that goes to prove you can have over 10,000 dives and you aint’ seen it all!

Golden Hamlets are not only one of the crown jewels of anyone’s Fish Life List, but also a crown jewel level of an accomplishment here at REEF. We have added 2 (not 1 but 2!) Golden Hamlet super stars to that very elite group of surveyors so check out who all of them are.

Pacific Lionfish in Atlantic and Caribbean Waters are a big problem. REEF continues to get the word out and network all the agencies, universities, companies and people doing something about this growing and frightening problem. Lad Akins recently spoke at the Caribbean Fisheries Management Council meeting to try and unify all participants in a plan of action. We need your help not only to spread the word about the ecological issues these fish are presenting but to help support REEF’s continued work in learning, managing and disseminating information about this very real and very frightening threat. Be sure to check out all of the recent press stories that have featured REEF’s lionfish research.

This month’s REEF Trip Tips and Tricks is all about foresight and good planning. Check out how utilizing the 5 P’s (Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance) can help with a REEF Trip.

On a sad note, the economy has taken its toll on REEF as it has on all of us over the last 12 months. During this fiscal year we have lost over $100,000 in funding in Advanced Assessment Teams monitoring projects, including artificial reefs and our 10 year study of marine reserves in the Florida Keys. It is unfortunate and we are hoping just like everyone else that the coming election will get people’s attention focused on moving forward. Due to these fiscal constraints REEF was forced to take a hard look at cash flow projections and had to make a very difficult decision to lay of off one of our valued employees, Joe Cavanaugh. As Director of Field Operations, most of Joe’s employment responsibilities were directly connected with the lost funding.

Joe is currently looking for opportunities out there. He is interested in marine conservation, biology or policy positions. If anybody has any leads or networks for him to tap into please feel free to contact him. We wish Joe all the best and appreciate and value everything he has done for REEF over the last 4 years.

So that’s it for now. Best Fishes and parrotfish kisses,