2017 Springs Field School

31 Aug 2017 3:46 PM | Tess Skiles (Administrator)

This year's Springs Field School was a wonderful success! Students from around the state joined us in the Ocala National Forest for four full days of springs exploration and education. With a great group of students, presenters, and some incredible sights, it was one of our best years yet.

Dr. Bob Knight and guest speakers, Bob Palmer, Jim Gross, Christine Denny, Monica Ross, Eric Hutchenson, Nathan Reaver, Whitey Markle, Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson, Guy Marwick, and Lars Anderson joined us to teach about the ins and outs of Florida's water resources and their conservation. The course covered springs biology, ecology, and restoration along with Florida geology,and legislative efforts of springs protection. Each day, students participated in springs field visits to learn about water quality testing with our very own Emily Taylor (pictured below). Following a field demonstration at each site, the springs exploration began!

 

The photo above shows multiple schools of around 2,500 striped bass taking refuge in Silver Glen Springs (yes, we counted). This is a very rare occurrence and our timing couldn't have been better!

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Dr. Knight teaching students how to use a plankton tow net for measuring water particulates.

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Field School students are recording water conductivity, turbidity, dissolved oxygen, and temperature.

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The group often found themselves pausing to share stories and take in the nature around us. We found this spot after a short hike to the sand boils at Silver Glen Springs. We were warned about a massive amount of mosquitos on this hike but the group, as a whole, decided to make the trip anyways (that's what you call dedication). There ended up only being a few bugs, so we were glad we trudged on.

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The group pictured gazing at the solar eclipse during our paddle on the Silver River!

 

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As The Clash once sung, "should I stay or should I go now?"

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Guy Marwick, founder of the Silver Springs Museum, gives the class a history lesson on Silver Springs State Park.

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And last but not least...

 

We're still trying to figure out who had the bright idea to give Dr. Knight a squirt gun! Our summer environmental science intern, Fauve Wilson, was one of the many paddlers who fell victim to Dr. Night's water shenanigans during our Silver River trip. However, given the heat, there were a few appreciative targets. Thanks for the cool down, Dr. Bob.

Copyright © 2017 Tess Skiles Photography, All rights reserved


The Florida Springs Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. All or a portion of your donation may be tax deductible. FEIN 46-1663401.


Mailing Address: 23695 W US HWY 27, High Springs, FL 32643
Main Tel: (386) 454-2427
Main Fax: (386) 454-9369


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