The SWARA team is thrilled to report that it’s been the most active summer on the SWARA reefs since their deployment in terms of abundance and diversity of marine life. Early in the year we observed sea anemones for the first time on the Grayton Turtle Reef — mostly Pale, Club-tipped, and Light Bulb Anemones. While these species are relatively common throughout the Gulf of Mexico, it’s the first time we’ve seen them so shallow and close to shore in our local area.
We’ve observed large pelagic species like Manta Rays and Spotted Eagle Rays on both the snorkel reefs and the fish/dive reefs. In addition to everything we’ve seen on the reefs, off the reefs a couple locals got to paddle with a humpback whale earlier in the summer and several folks have now swam with a few whale sharks cruising through in late July. It truly has been a summer of abundance so far and we can’t wait to see what comes next!
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