Monday, March 27, 2006

Boca Chita Key

So today, we needed to test our Mako engine to make sure it was running fine before our six week sampling period. So we launched out of Biscayne National Park range station and shot across the bay to Elliot Key, but we decided to check out Boca Chita Key instead. Its a small key that has natural inlets running along both north and south sides and the ocean on its east side (of course). Anyways, its a cool little place, where you can dock your boat and camp out overnight if you want. Like I already said, it is small, and you can see the whole thing in less than an hour. But if you have the time, you can go snorkeling around the island, there's lots of grass beds, its not too deep, and reef formations on the ocean side (although I haven't snorkeled out on the ocean side). We saw some pretty cool stuff today, including a big scrawled cowfish in inches of water, so content in its feeding it didn't seem to notice that its back was out of the water.

On the ocean side of the island there are lots of tidal pools (the island is like an old coral reef head that become exposed in lowering sea levels)which did not have too much life other than sergeant majors and sea urchins, although in one pool there was a baby tang, even though it didn't stick around long enough to get a good look at it. It was fun looking around there none-the-less and you should definitely check it out sometime.

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