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REEF Fish & Friends is a free seminar series held at the REEF Campus in Key Largo, Florida. Each event features engaging ocean-themed presentations from guest speakers. Snorkelers, divers, and marine life enthusiasts are invited to join informal discussions and mingle with members of our friendly, ocean-minded community. REEF Fish & Friends is made possible by the generous support of our members. For information on how to get involved, email sierra.barkdoll@REEF.org. Due to the limited ability to social distance, face masks are required indoors.

Check the REEF Events Calendar for all the details of the next Fish & Friends event. If you want to be notified about our community events such as Fish & Friends, sign up to receive the monthly REEF Campus and Keys Community newsletter here.

 

March 2022: FWC Reef Fish Research in the Florida Keys
Jess Keller

View Recording Here

Learn about ongoing reef fish research conducted by here in the Florida Keys by scientists at Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), including long-term monitoring projects, tracking fish movements, spawning aggregations, and more! Jess, a research associate with Fish and Wildlife Research Institute (FWRI), will provide updates on their lates work and findings. FWRI is responsible for conducting research state-wide to help answer state management questions, and is a section within FWC.

Jess Keller, FWC

April 2022: Sponge Hunters with the History of Diving Museum
Lynea Wilson

View Recording Here

Did you know that the humble sea sponge has built entire cities in Florida and has the power to revitalize our reef ecosystem? Lynea will discuss Sponge Hunters, the newest exhibit from the History of Diving Museum. She will share the surprising history, ecology, and impact of sponges in Florida and the Caribbean. Sponge Hunters opens at the History of Diving Museum on May 18, and is open to the public through the end of 2022.

May 2022: Community in Conservation
Dr. Emily Schmitt and Dr. Loretta Lawrence of Nova Southeastern University

View Recording Here.

Conservation partnerships such as those between REEF, the Nature Conservancy, NOAA, universities, the Florida Keys, and many more, play an essential role in providing resources needed to move forward in marine science conservation. In this presentation, Dr. Emily Schmitt (REEF Member #9) and Dr. Loretta Lawrence (coral reef conservationist extraordinaire) will highlight the importance of community building in sustaining coral reef conservation by sharing their past and current research, volunteer work, and involvement in the marine conservation community over the past 25 years.

June 2022: Blue Heron Bridge & The Great Annual Fish Count
Stacey Henderson, REEF

View Recording Here.

Blue Heron Bridge (BHB) in West Palm Beach is one of the most diverse dive/snorkel sites in the Tropical Western Atlantic. Learn about the Great Annual Fish Count and how to get involved, and discover some unique fish at BHB, plus tips for exploring this incredible place, located right in our backyard.

July 2022: I.CARE: A community-wide approach to coral restoration
Dr. Kylie Smith

View Recording Here.

I.CARE is a non-profit dedicated to restoring the coral reef communities in Islamorada with a mission to incorporate locals and visitors in the restoration and maintenance of coral reef communities. Learn about how I.CARE educates recreational divers and involves them in all of I.CARE's activities including coral, sponge, and crab restoration projects.

August 2022: Shaping the Future of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary - and How You Can Help
Sarah Fangman
View Recording Here.

Sarah will discuss how the Sanctuary is working to address the many challenges facing the Florida Keys marine environment. She will also highlight "Mission: Iconic Reefs"  - an ambitious restoration plan to restore seven sites in the Keys, and share ways that our community can work with the Sanctuary to protect the marine environment.