COB Students Arrive for 2nd Annual Terrestrial Natural History of The Bahamas Internship

COB Students Arrive for 2nd Annual Terrestrial Natural History of The Bahamas Internship

5/29/2015 2:38:00 PM

With summer underway, three College of the Bahamas biochemistry majors have come to Eleuthera for the annual Terrestrial Natural History of the Bahamas internship.  Shannan Yates, Fran Rahming, and Tamarind Johnson flew over from Nassau on May 18th. The internship will run for seven weeks and the students will spend classroom and field trip time covering topics including botany, geology, herpetology, ornithology, and entomology. In addition to learning all about Bahamian terrestrial natural history, each will work on The Preserve’s Permanent Forest Plot project and an independent research project. The internship is taught by The Preserve’s botanist, Dr. Ethan Freid with the assistance of several visiting scientists who specialize in other fields of terrestrial ecology. 

Weeks 1 & 2
The intern’s first week involved basic botany and an introduction to the flora of the Preserve.  By the end of the week they were able to identify over 50 species by sight. In the second week, John and Joan Mylroie of Mississippi State joined the team to lead an intensive week of geology. The interns learned the fundamentals of carbonate geology and how to interpret different rock formations. The week culminated in visits to a series of caves around the island and a trip to Lighthouse Point to see solidified sand ripples in rock at this Southern most point in Eleuthera.

The interns learn to identify native plants by using keys in The Flora of The Bahamas. 

Interns (from left to right): Shannon, Francesca, and Tamarind learn key features
of native plants with Dr. Ethan Freid. 

The interns get their hands dirty potting up some native seeds. They will monitor 
germination and growth during their time at The Preserve. 

The interns explore the coastal plant community along a rocky cliff just north of Hatchet Bay. 

John and Joan Mylroie introduce the interns to the
carbonate geology of the Bahamian archipelago. 

John Mylroie discusses how ancient sand
dunes formed modern rock ridges along
many coastlines today.