Experience this citizen science opportunity to join us on a shark research expedition in the Bahamas aboard Shedd’s research vessel, the R/V Coral Reef II. Sharks play a vital role in top-down maintenance of ocean ecosystems around the world. Globally, many shark species are threatened with extinction, largely due to overfishing (both targeted and as bycatch) and other unsustainable practices. Your participation in this expedition contributes to meaningful conservation efforts with a variety of shark species, all while getting hands-on experience conducting research in the field alongside Shedd’s director of marine research, Steve Kessel, Ph.D.
To apply for this expedition, please send your contact information, along with a summary of related experience/skills to Hilary Wind at [email protected].
April 22-30, 2020
$4,500 per person, all shared accommodations
- Participate in hands-on work alongside researcher Steve Kessel, Ph.D., and contribute to meaningful assessments used to investigate the relationship between ecosystem health and shark abundance.
- Tour the world-famous Bimini Biological Research Field Station (aka Shark Lab) and learn about the research and techniques you will be using on this expedition.
- Rotate activities each day, assisting with various research methods, including baited remote underwater video surveys (BRUVS), shallow and deep longline and drumline surveys, mark-recapture tagging, acoustic telemetry and tissue sampling.
- Sail around the beautiful Berry and Bimini Islands in the Bahamas, taking some time to enjoy leisure activities unique to our location. These may include snorkeling a blue hole, the wreck of the SS Sapona and Triangle Rocks, as well as walking on beautiful remote beaches.
- Live on Shedd’s research vessel, the R/V Coral Reef II, and experience life conducting conservation research in the field.
Your expert trip leader
Steven Kessel, Ph.D., has worked extensively with a wide variety of marine species and has a well-established reputation as a conservation scientist. At Shedd, he oversees a suite of research projects aimed at protecting commercially important species in the Bahamas. His own original research is aimed at better understanding Caribbean shark species to protect them from further decline.
Shedd Aquarium’s research vessel, the R/V Coral Reef II, will be our primary base of operations and our home during the entire trip. It is equipped with the creature comforts necessary to make such a trip enjoyable. Cabins and heads (marine toilets) are shared, with two single-bed bunks in each stateroom. In addition, the boat is air-conditioned and has its own freshwater system, with hot water for showering. Regular 110-volt service is always available. Please note that Wi-Fi connectivity is not available, although there will be a satellite phone in case of emergencies, and cell roaming is possible when close to the islands. Meals aboard the boat are planned and prepared by our chef.
- Eight nights’ room and board on the R/V Coral Reef II
- Welcome dinner the first night in Miami
- All meals and nonalcoholic drinks
- Bimini Shark Lab tour
- Personal expenses incurred outside of the time you arrive on and depart from the boat.
- Flights to/from Miami, Florida
- Transportation to/from Miami airport to Merrill-Stevens shipyard
Getting there and home
A valid passport for international travel is required. Once accepted to the program you will need to make your own travel arrangements to and from Bimini. We recommend arriving in Miami on April 22 sometime in the afternoon. Please book your return flight for Thursday, April 30. Because many airfares are nonrefundable, please confirm with us before finalizing your plans.
$4,500 per person, all shared cabins
Nature Requires Flexibility
Activities are weather-dependent and may be subject to change if our guide determines it is necessary.
Participants must possess the enthusiasm and stamina that it takes to make such an adventure enjoyable & rewarding. Scuba experience is not required (we will not be diving during this expedition). Participants must be able to get in and out of boats.
Contact [email protected] for further detailed information
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