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Building Coral Trees in the Bahamas

Posted by Jay Cassista on Dec 30, 2019 1:15:27 PM

Tabor students are in the Bahamas at the Gerace Research Center in San Salvador for the last week of the year working on the coral nursery they began last spring. In March 2019, we constructed two coral trees: pvc pipes connected to look like branches of a tree where we hung coral fragments of Elkhorn and Staghorn coral we found on the seafloor while snorkeling. It is our hope that the fragments will remain alive and grow large enough so that we can attach them to the seafloor and grow out, restoring areas of damaged reef in the Bahamas. We will maintain and multiply our coral trees over two weeks each year, in December and in March, and hope to "plant" our first new reef restoration in a year or two. Unfortunately, strong storms are our enemy in this effort as we discovered one of our two trees from 2019 destroyed when we arrived.  Read on to learn about the efforts of the December team who arrived for a week of field research on December 28.



We have successfully arrived in Nassau at the comfortable hour of 11:30 PM. Our students immediately jumped into the hotel pool for a refreshing dip. We will begin early tomorrow with breakfast and then off to San Salvador Island.


We arrived in San Salvador a little late due to delays.  We are learning that 'island time' is 'island time'.  We went for a dip in the aquamarine tropical waters, had a nice dinner, and spent the evening setting up our lab, going over the mission goals, and playing mad gab for a while.

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Topics: Marine Science, School by the Sea, International Learning, REEF

Venturing into the Unknown

Posted by Georgia Toland '20 on Apr 19, 2019 10:24:37 AM

About three weeks ago, seven of my classmates and three of my teachers and I went on a once in a lifetime trip.

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Topics: REEF

Building a Coral Reef Nursery

Posted by Jay Cassista, Director of Marine Science on Mar 11, 2019 2:58:09 PM

Two groups of students will spend their March break in San Salvador, Bahamas, snorkeling and enjoying the warm waters and sunshine, and working very hard! They are creating Tabor Academy’s first coral reef nursery. This year’s REEF trip will catalog the species of coral in the area, do some genetic testing to find disease-resistant species, and then take fragments from these healthy corals to grow in our nursery on PVC “trees” anchored to the seabed. When we return next year, we will hope to “plant” these more mature corals in the seabed, rebuilding an area of damaged reef.

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Topics: Marine Science, Tabor Academy, Science Education, REEF

REEF: An Experience as Unique as our School by the Sea

Posted by Abigail Park '18 on Dec 14, 2016 10:36:22 AM

The School by the Sea is a nickname used to proudly state the unique opportunities and experiences that Tabor’s location offers. One of the defining factors that compelled me to apply to Tabor was the hands-on pedagogy that places the concept of understanding over the task of memorization in all classes, but I was most impressed by the courses taught in the Marine and Nautical Science Center. The curriculum of these courses takes full advantage of Tabor’s defining feature by basing labs and lectures off of ecosystems and organisms that can be found right outside the classroom.

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Topics: Marine Science, REEF

Caribbean Studies Blog #2

Posted by ksaltonstall on Jan 17, 2014 7:50:11 AM

Enjoy this second video of a two part series, created by John Rice '70, about the research portion of our 2014 Caribbean Studies Program. The students are a critical part of the research being conducted by the National Parks Service on the stressed coral reef populations around St. John.

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Topics: National Parks Service, REEF

Tabor Boy's Island Time

Posted by ksaltonstall on Jan 13, 2014 9:19:18 AM

Enjoy this video, created by John Rice '70, about the first half of the first cruise of our 2014 Caribbean Studies Program. The students are learning about their gear, perfecting their snorkeling skills and now getting into the research portion of their trip. Stay tuned for another video later this week.

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Topics: Tabor Academy, Tabor Boy, Student Life, REEF