Divers and snorkelers can participate in a series of July events hosted by Florida Keys dive operators, in cooperation with the Reef Environmental Education Foundation, to assist in identifying and documenting fish diversity and population trends.
The Great Annual Fish Count is an international eco-event where volunteer divers and snorkelers gather data used by marine researchers, resource managers and policy makers to help assess reefs’ condition and their ability to sustain fish and marine life.
Interested divers and snorkelers can organize their own fish count dives individually or through a dive club, or join local dive shops for special fish-identification dive and snorkel excursions.
Start the annual event July 1, with Amoray Dive Resort, at mile marker 104 in Key Largo, for an afternoon of diving and fish surveys. Bring a camera and participate in a reef fish ID scavenger hunt, with a dive trip for two awaiting the first competitor to capture 10 fish photos. To register, call (305) 451-3595 or visit www.amoray.com.
Horizon Divers, located at 100 Ocean Drive in Key Largo, is to host a REEF fish ID class July 19, starting at 9 a.m. and followed by afternoon dives to conduct fish surveys. For details, call Horizon Divers at (305) 453-3535, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.horizondivers.com.