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Friends of the Environment holds Annual Abaco Science Alliance Conference

Marsh Harbour, The Bahamas — By: R.Octavia Dean-McIntosh
On the 6th of January, 2012, I was privileged to attend to the Abaco Science Alliance Conference. It was an enlightening and interesting experience. The event was well attended by members of the community and an exceptional number of students from the various schools on Abaco were present. Fascinating and educated presentations were the order of the day. Topics ranged from the wintering of piping plovers in The Bahamas to developing sustainable aquaculture in The Bahamas.My favorite presentation of all was the “The Lionfish Invasion – how severe will the impacts be?” which was done by Craig Layman. I found Mr.Layman to be well-informed and captivating as well. He explained the migration of the lionfish to the Caribbean and the rise in population numbers. It was made explicitly clear that attempting to completely eradicate the lionfish species in The Bahamas was futile, due to its unusual preferred habitats. He expressed appreciation for the different actions being done to control the population numbers as well as other ways to control the population numbers. Mr. Layman ended his presentation by reiterating that since extinguishing the entire species is near to impossible, we must continue to do all that we can to assist in controlling its population growth.After every two or three presentations there was a group discussion that allowed the crowd to ask questions and converse back and forth with the presenters. There were also edifying posters that illustrated different environmental science topics in relation to The Bahamas. Lunch and coffee breaks were also included and appreciated by all.

When I left the conference at 3:00 p.m., I felt much more familiar with environmental scientific studies and research than when I had arrived. I also felt compelled to continue learning more. The coordinator of the event, Friends of The Environment, presenters, and all others involved did a splendid job!

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