I am working on a project that evaluates bonefish population dynamics in Florida Bay - super interesting, I'll try and post more about that some other time. Right now, I am reading up on some environmental variables that could be drivers for the dynamics we are witnessing: things like salinity, temperature, rainfall, algae, climatic conditions - and how a lot of these are associated with each other. One interesting component of the Florida Bay system is seagrass. It grows on the flats in the Bay and is an important habitat, especially for juvenile fish. It is of course also sensitive to the earlier mentioned variables, and seagrass die-off is a serious problem in the Bay.
I just found out seagrass dying is a problem around the world, but also that seagrass is so much more amazing than I thought. So that's the reason for this post, to share an excellent New York Times article:
Disappearing Seagrass Protects Against Pathogens, Even Climate Change, Scientists Find
Also, if you're in Gainesville (FL) and you want to learn more about seagrass, Savanna Barry (Nature Coast Biological Station) will be doing a talk on 1 March 2017, "Seagrasses of the Florida Big Bend: Ecology, resilience, and threats". This is part of the Water, Wetlands and Watersheds Seminar series by the UF Howard T. Odum Center for Wetlands (click here for details).