Florida Shark Survey
Monitor community-level biodiversity of shark populations along Florida’s coastline
Why this project is important:
Shark populations are subjected to increasing pressures from habitat degradation, pollution and unsustainable fishing pressures and long-term monitoring can identify negative impacts and help develop was to mitigate them. This knowledge of how these species utilize Florida's fragile coastal ecosystems is critical to ensuring their sustainable management and conservation. The results and information collected will be used to inform management decisions and translated for the general public to increase awareness and understanding of these vulnerable animals.
How this project is conducted:
Our survey includes non-invasive, in-water biological and behavioral data collection techniques. We use a standardized methodology for our Underwater Visual Survey (UVS) and capture images using our underwater camera (for positive species and sex determination) with paired lasers (to determine precise length measurements). We collaborate with local shark ecotourism operators, offering experiences for their guests to be citizen scientsts and help us collect environmental data and use our tools to capture data about the sharks. Engaging the public in the science is a valuable opportunity to share information about our work and spreading awareness about shark conservation.