Thursday, 16 July 2015

Rocky shore studies

What was that called?
The cambridge marine science a level course taught by TRACC is very heavily based on fieldwork.  We like our students to know what an ecosystem, habitat or niche is because they have studied them closely. 

Update Overall results 2015 are awesome plus Tom Gibson was the best marine science student in the world.

These are a few photos of the rocky shore fieldwork practicals, over a couple of weeks, we looked at dessication, zonation, exposure, home range, habitat plusbiodiversity and adaptations.

Studying the tidal poll inhabitants
Other field trips studied Fisheries, Mangroves, Coasts, plus underwater biodiversity and ecology studies.

The 2016 Marine Science A-level will be running from 18th January - 2nd May (following the Cambridge exam timetable). 

For more information, please check our website or e-mail info@tracc-borneo.org



Mark release recapture studies were used to learn
about Habitat preferences in intertidal organisms

Close study of microhabitats

Elevation is very important for species
living in the intertidal zone

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Malaysian Interns 2015

Our 2015 Malaysian Interns are finally here!



Malaysian Universities require their students to do twelve weeks of Industrial Training as part of their degree course. This year our lucky interns are coming to us from both UMT and UMS and have backgrounds in Marine Science or Conservation Biology. They successfully beat the rush back in December and were undeterred by the challenging application process; Allen, Martinus, Nadia & Shaakirah have finally made it all the way to an exciting internship with TRACC on Pom Pom, Sabah, Malaysia.

They will learn to scuba dive and (once they get past blowing bubble rings for hours) how to get to work underwater. Cement mixing, concrete lifting and lowering, reef rebuilding and coral transferring are all part of the days work at TRACC. This is part of our major restoration work where we stop the decimated rubble reef from moving and plant healthy baby corals in stable conditions. These in turn grow, stabilize the rubble further and provide critical habitat for all the other denizens of the reef.



On top of this, they will be undertaking research rotations with our resident scientists on the long term projects TRACC has running. These include fish, coral and invertebrate identification to species (there are over 300 species of fish alone!). The coral garden identification and mapping project (the coral id book comes in 3 volumes!). Soft coral stabilization of steep, mobile, rubble substrates ("Perhaps we can use soft coral to "stitch" the reef back together so that it stops moving enough for us to replant it".). Turtle daily migration patterns (Seriously, where does George go every afternoon?).

Finally, they will be mixing with people from different places, ages, backgrounds, opinions and experiences and discussing and debating all the marine science, conservation, ecology, anthropology, sociology and politics that affect the marine environment. The critical thing that unites everyone at TRACC is a love of the ocean, a passion to preserve what we have and the dedication to restore what has been damaged.

Allen, Martinus, Nadia & Shaakirah have a unique opportunity to witness the problems and take part in the solutions for themselves before graduating as enthusiastic Malaysian Scientists.

Good Luck Guys!



For more information, please check our website or e-mail info@tracc-borneo.org

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Saturday, 11 July 2015

Randall the Ribbon Eel







Meet Randall the TRACC resident ribbon eel, usually found not far from our jetty. 









His blue and yellow colouring shows that he is a male, but this won't be for long. Ribbon eels are thought to be protandric hermaphroditic, meaning that they grow as males but once reaching a certain age switch to females. When this happens, Randall will become entirely yellow.

Whitneys project-soft coral and rubble planting

Today I went out with Tom and Helena to help out with Whitneys project.
Whitneys project is to see if soft corals can be used to stabilize a rubble reef slope and if they do, will this enable hard corals to settle, grow and create a coral reef.
I very much look forward following this particular project.

Tom's focused on attaching the cable tie
On the way to the control site we saw a octopus hiding in his hole and on the way back we saw a turtle resting.

The vizibility was, for Pom Pom, not that great, we have had a bit of rain and wind the last few days, which has been very much appreciated, we needed that.


Helena with things to plant



Octopus hiding in his hole

Green turtle resting

With his fellow sucker fish

For more information, please check our website or e-mail info@tracc-borneo.org

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Thursday, 9 July 2015

Advance Open Water course

Marius practising hovering
On todays schedule for Marius and Martinez in their Advanced Open Water course, with dive instructor Liz, was Peak Performance Bouyancy, PPB.

Water temperatur was 28-30 degrees, there were schools of fish around us and the conditions were perfect for PPB training.

The boys completed all the exercises without fault and got treated with a fun dive afterwards.
Martinez practising hovering
Swimthrough











Kissing 
For more information, please check our website or e-mail info@tracc-borneo.org

The main website is at http://tracc-borneo.org
Check out our posts on our activities
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on google + tracc

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