84.7 F
Charlotte Amalie
Tuesday, April 16, 2024
HomeNewsArchivesJuvenile-Shark Researchers Continue Work in Coral Bay

Juvenile-Shark Researchers Continue Work in Coral Bay

July 16, 2008 — Two researchers from the mainland recently spent a couple of weeks exploring the briny lives of juvenile sharks living in Coral Bay.
"It's a productive nursery for black tip and lemon sharks," said researcher Bryan DeAngelis.
DeAngelis and Greg Skomal took vacations from their day jobs to continue research they started several years ago as graduate students at the University of Rhode Island. DeAngelis now works for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in the agency's shellfish-restoration program, while Skomal works in marine fisheries for the state of Massachusetts.
The Coral Bay work comes under the NOAA's Apex Predators Investigation Program.
"We're looking a species composition, abundances and habitat, with a concentration on nursery areas where moms are coming to drop their pups and where the pups are staying before they move out," DeAngelis said.
DeAngelis and Bryan haven't come to any conclusions yet.
"We have the data, but it needs analysis," DeAngelis said.
To keep tabs on the baby sharks, they've surgically implanted transmitters in the Coral Bay juvenile sharks over the past couple of years. This year, they installed receivers at various undersea locations in Coral Bay.
"The pings from the transmitters are picked up on the receiver, and we get the idea of who is where and when," DeAngelis said.
The project also tracks movements of juvenile sharks as far along St. John's south side as Fish Bay using receivers put in place by researchers on conch and reef-fish projects.
"The technology is all the same," DeAngelis said.
The project was funded to the tune of $10,800 through grants from they New England Biolabs Foundation and Peter, Carol, Ian and Ilsa Bouyoucos. Rooms were donated by Estate Concordia Condominiums and Eco-Tents. Donations were funneled through the Coral Bay Community Council.
The amount of the grants for the project increases every year, DeAngelis said.
The two plan to return next summer, as well as once between then and now to check on their project. They haven't set any time to wrap up the work.
"The project is indefinite," DeAngelis said.
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.

Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.