September 2, 2014  

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Threatened and Endangered Marine Animals Focus of Sea Camp 2011 on Gulf Coast

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Young participants enjoy a summer day on the water at Sea Camp 2010. (GCRL file photo, Martha Duvall)

For almost a quarter of a century, The University of Southern Mississippi Sea Camp has epitomized “fun learning” while introducing campers to the value of coastal habitats.

The focus of this year’s popular marine science day camp program is threatened and endangered marine species. Youngsters age 6-13 will learn to fish, crab, seine and sieve at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory Marine Education Center in Ocean Springs. Registration begins Jan. 19.

“It’s important for youth to understand the value of marine life and the delicate balance within the ecosystems,” said Summer Rohe, camp director. “Sea campers get to experience first-hand the wonders of our coastal environment and actually enjoy learning.”

Sea Camp will be offered in six sessions this summer: June 6-10, June 13-17, June 20-24, June 27-July 1, July 11-15 and July 18-22. Sessions for ages 6-9 are available all of those weeks; sessions for ages 10-11 are available all weeks except the week of June 27. Sessions for ages 12-13 include kayaking and are available the weeks of June 13, 20 and 27.

Cost per week is $210 for ages 6-7, $235 for ages 8-11, and $275 for ages 12-13. Fees includes camp t-shirt, individual and group photos, all instructional costs and materials, admission fees, as well as field trips and art supplies. The five-day sessions run 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.

Field trips will take campers into beach and saltmarsh habitats. All campers visit Deer Island aboard the R/V Sea Explorer. Additionally, campers ages 8-13 spend a day at Ship Island. Tweens and teens also kayak through the maritime forests of Davis Bayou in the Gulf Islands National Seashore.

“Every year we add an aspect of current GCRL research to camp,” said Rohe. “This year we’re highlighting the value of threatened and endangered species like Gulf Sturgeon.”   

For more information, call (228) 818-8833 or email marine.education@usm.edu. Registration forms are available online at http://www.usm.edu/gcrl/mec/docs/2011.seacamp.flyer.pdf. Registration deadline is May 13.

 GCRL’s Marine Education Center is the lab’s public education and outreach arm.

Located on the Gulf of Mexico, GCRL focuses on sustainable coastal and marine resources, development of new marine technologies and the education of future scientists and citizens. The GCRL is home to the Department of Coastal Sciences, the Marine Education Center, the Center for Fisheries Research and Development and the Thad Cochran Marine Aquaculture Center. More information can be found at www.usm.edu/gcrl.