We’ve had the incredible opportunity to snorkel the largest coral reef system in the world, the Great Barrier Reef. We boarded a boat in the morning and spent the day snorkeling three different spots, each with unique biodiversity for us to explore. We got to swim with turtles and some beautifully colored fish, and examine branching corals, and spotted rays, eel and even more sea life.

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The next day, the Wildlife and Conservation on assignment group had the opportunity to contribute to an active research program sponsored by the Australian government. The research consisted of observing certain fish and corals to determine how healthy the reef is. It felt great to know that we were helping an important cause, and made the experience even more memorable! At the end of the day, our snorkel guides sat down with us for a q&a session. We learned so much from them, and it was inspiring to hear from people who are so dedicated to preserving this delicate ecosystem! What an amazing two days we’ve had here in Cairns.

 

Meanwhile, our National Geographic expert Ulla Lohmann put forward a challenge to us students: produce a short video highlighting our Great Barrier Reef guide, Emma, and the conservation program, Eye on the Reef. Hank accepted this challenge and, with the team and Ulla’s assistance, put together this amazing video: