FSUCML in the News

Goliath grouper fishing may be allowed in Florida again after 30-year ban

The largest grouper in the Atlantic Ocean is so big that it can eat a four-foot-long shark in one gulp and makes noises so loud that nearby scuba divers feel an effect much like a sonic boom. These fish, named goliath groupers after the giant of Biblical legend, can reach more than eight feet long and weigh over 800 pounds. But their gargantuan size offers little protection against the proposed lifting of Florida’s fishing ban for this threatened species.

Alligator Point sees record low sea turtle nests this season

Researchers at FSU say fluctuations in nesting activity is common and it’s more important to look at the trend over multiple years rather than data from just one season. “The nest numbers this year are low, but on average the last ten years, the nest numbers have been increasing, from what FWC has been showing us. So that’s really a reflection of the effective conservation measures that have been put in place over the last several decades.” Dr. Matthew Ware, a Florida State University Marine Turtle Research, Ecology, and Conservation researcher, stated.

Epibionts Reflect Spatial and Foraging Ecology of Gulf of Mexico Loggerhead Turtles

FSU Ph.D. Candidate Ian Silver-Gorges and faculty member Dr. Jeroen Ingles have published a new study following their interest on the small animals that live on turtle carapaces. After examining what they are and how they get there, the authors were interested in discovering if these organisms can tell them anything about the turtle they are travelling with. Insights surrounding this new question are reflected in their latest paper: Epibionts Reflect Spatial and Foraging Ecology of Gulf of Mexico Loggerhead Turtles (Caretta caretta).

FSU researchers find most nitrogen in Gulf of Mexico comes from coastal waters

Almost all of the nitrogen that fertilizes life in the open ocean of the Gulf of Mexico is carried into the gulf from shallower coastal areas, researchers from Florida State University found. Michael Stukel, an associate professor in the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science The work, published in Nature Communications, is crucial to understanding the food web of that ecosystem, which is a spawning ground for several commercially valuable species of fish, including the Atlantic bluefin tuna, which was a focus of the research.

FSU researchers discover how ‘cryptic species’ respond differently to coral bleaching

Certain brightly colored coral species dotting the seafloor may appear indistinguishable to many divers and snorkelers, but Florida State University researchers have found that these genetically diverse marine invertebrates vary in their response to ocean warming, a finding that has implications for the long-term health of coral reefs.