Florida Sea Grant Extension in Collier County

Welcome to the Collier County Sea Grant Extension Blog

This blog is an opportunity for me to share with you my extension outreach efforts and useful information to make you a more informed coastal citizen. If you have any questions about what you see, feel free to contact me at fluech@ufl.edu.

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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Day 1: 2011 Great Goliath Grouper Count

Photo Credit: Katie Laakkonen
Today my colleagues from Rookery Bay, the City of Naples Natural Resources Division, Collier County Coastal Zone Management, and the Sheriff's Marine Unit completed day one of the 2011 Great Goliath Grouper Count (GGGC) in Collier County. The GGGC is a Florida Sea Grant Extension Program pilot project conducted in collaboration with researchers from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute. The goals of the project include
  • providing a regional "snapshot" of goliath presence and abundance at artificial reefs over a range of depths throughout Southwest Florida,
  • Comparing abundance & size distribution to habitat features, depth, and region
  • Characterizing size structure of goliath grouper within the study area, and
  • Involving stakeholders in the collection of fundamental fisheries information
Other Sea Grant Extension Agents in Southwest Florida (and even Taylor County in the Big Bend Region) are working with their colleagues to conduct similar surveys this week. In all, we sampled 5 sites today. My team sampled three (R-Tower, Gravy Train, and Paddlewheel) and the other team sampled two close to the Monroe/Collier county line. They were suppose to sample a third site in Monroe County, but strong currents prevented them from doing it.
Overall, I think it was a successful day. We counted several dozen goliath groupers; once I get final numbers, I'll be sure to let you know.  Enjoy the video!

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