Seagrass Superheroes Series 2022
16 June 2022 / By Esther Farrant, Education Officer
What a Spring we have seen here on the ReMEDIES Project Education program! As we head inexorably towards June and the start of Summer and a busy diving season, we can look back at the great successes of the Seagrass Superheroes program and our intensive educational outreach season delivering the series four times over thanks to an exceptional uptake of attendees back in March!
The Seagrass Superheroes spring program engaged with over 70 students from the home education community in the Southwest, each participating with three workshops covering many aspects of the projects’ aims and connecting the learners and their families with the key concepts of seagrass conservation. This program aimed to connect with a diverse range of students from the area and take them and their families on a learning journey to discover the world of ReMEDIES.
Workshops included making wildflower seedbombs to generate new habitats for pollinators and connect to learning about seagrass as the only marine flowering plant. Attendees explored the national marine aquarium to discover the amazing creatures that can be found in our local waters and tropical habitats as well, many of which reply on Seagrass as a foundation habitat. Once connecting with the seagrass project restoration concepts, learners progressed to developing conservation methods to protect and maintain the restored seagrass beds in our advanced mooring system workshop. Students developed their design ideas for a mooring that would not damage the seagrass beds and there were some outstanding results!
The last session in the series took place on Mount Batten beach, with a rockpool ramble and snorkel safari. This was an opportunity to get hands on and discover more about the animals that live is the local temperate waters and inhabit the seagrass meadows just off our coast. Many happy hours were whiled away with our trouser cuffs rolled up and squatting down to inspect the latest discovery in the exciting pools of mystery revealed at low tide. The team were overwhelmed at the enthusiasm of both the students and their families perfecting their rockpooling techniques and teaching each other best practise to follow the rockpool code of conduct.
The final session of the spring program series comes to an end this month and we celebrated the 30th anniversary of the EU LIFE funding that made the program possible by taking the participants on a boat trip around the Plymouth Sound Special Area of Conservation. This trip gave the learners and their families an up-close experience of our restoration site, and the chance to deploy some seagrass seeds by bagging up seagrass on board! We then sailed across to the advanced mooring systems in Cawsand Bay to showcase the conservation initiatives they had learnt about. The boat trip came to end with a final loop around Drakes Island and the dense seagrass bed to the North and many smiles as we headed back to the National Marine Aquarium with appreciation of what the LIFE fund has allowed ReMEDIES to provide for the community.
After such a successful program the team are looking to deliver another series in the Autumn term. If you are interested in participating in our next seagrass superheroes program in the Autumn term, please contact the education team on firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have been inspired by the project and would like to volunteer either with diving, or education and outreach, please visit our volunteering page and get signed-up.
Till next time seagrass fans – stay connected (like a rhizome!) through our newsletter and blogs.