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Biology 208 Marine Biology

Marine Biology in Belize

 Belize is home to the longest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere.

During our 6 day / 5 night adventure you will have the opportunity to see manatees, loggerhead turtles and many more endangered species.  We will snorkel 2 of the three atolls in the Western Hemisphere and much more.

The trip is scheduled for May 2015.  Exact dates are still being determined.

Manatee

Manatee

Trip Information

This international education opportunity will take you to the beautiful beaches and warm waters of the Caribbean.  The Western Barrier reef is the 2nd longest barrier reef in the world.  It is home to hundreds of species of tropical fish, thousands of species of marine invertebrates.  Miles of staghorn and elkhorn coral tower above the sea floor while nurse sharks and southern stingrays swim below the turquoise water.  Barrel sponges, lobsters, nurse sharks, upside down jellyfish, resident loggerhead turtles, stingrays and manatee sittings are almost a guarantee.   Belize is home to one of the healthiest reef systems in the entire Caribbean.  Healthy marine ecosystems are critical to the safety and welfare of the majority of the human population.  Be prepare for a once in a lifetime adventure to the heart of the Caribbean.

 

Trip Details

Trip cost: T.B.D.

Approximately $1895 but it will depend upon airfare

                                         
Trip cost includes airfare, all transportation in Belize, room and board, snorkeling equipment, boat fees and entrance to the marine parks.

A $300.00 deposit is required to secure your spot.  The remaining balance can be paid in installments.  Students will need a valid U.S. passport to gain entry into Belize.  Passports take approximately 8 – 10 weeks to obtain and can be obtained at the main Post Office in downtown Springfield.  All participants are encourage to bring their own mask, fins and snorkel.  Students will also need to register for Biology 208 (Marine Biology / 2 credits) to be covered by the college insurance while non student participants will need to register through the International Community Education program. 

Trip cost does not cover snacks, souvenirs, play money while in Belize, tuition or International Community Education registration fee. 

Tour Itinerary (weather dependent)

 

Day 1  Arrive in Belize, take a shuttle to the water taxi station, boat ride to Calabash Caye and get settled in for the evening.  

Loggerhead turtle

Loggerhead turtle

Day 2 After watching the sun rise over the Caribbean we will make sure everyone is acclimated to snorkeling in the ocean.  This morning is our opportunity to test out our equipment and explore the turtle grass ecosystem in front of the station.  After lunch we can take a quick boat ride out to the shallower regions of the reef and start exploring the biodiversity of the marine system.

 

Trunk fish swimming among the coral

Day 3  Today we will head out to different sections of the reef.  We will learn about the reef formation and how this creates different ecosystems within the ocean.  This area is home to hundreds of marine species can be observed in a single glance.   During the course of the day we will be recording data about the invasive lionfish problem that is occurring in the Caribbean.  If the opportunity presents itself we may even have the chance to do some lionfish hunting.

Mexico Rocks

Sunrise in Belize

Day 4  This morning is another chance to watch the sunrise over the blue Caribbean waters.  After breakfast we will head out to the mangroves.  This area is home to the mysterious batfish, upside down jellyfish and hundreds of species of juvenile fish.  Mangroves are the nursery of the sea.  We will have the chance to see one of the most important habitats in the entire marine ecosystem.

 blue Carribian waters

Queen trigger fish in Hol Chan National Marine Preserve

Day 5  This morning we are headed to Glovers Atoll.  The southern section of the atoll serves as a protected reserve.  Glovers contains over 700 shallow coral patches within its lagoon.  There is an abundance of marine life to be found in Glovers, including turtles, manta rays, and all types of sharks. 

 

Caye Caulker

Caye Caulker

Departure Day

Day 6 Today is our last day to collect a few more rays of sunshine before we packour bags, say goodbye to our hosts and get ready to head home.

 

 If you are interested in the adventure but do not need the academic credits please contact me and we can discuss participation through the college's International Community Education program.  Space is limited so don't wait to sign up.

 

Group size will be limited to 15 participants in order to provide a 5 to 1 student instructor ratio.

For more information contact Professor Cox.
Sangamon Hall Room 2329
217-786-4909
Dave.cox@llcc.edu

Lincoln Land Community College