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Scientific name: Coccoloba uvifera Photo Courtesy: Seagrape is a common seaside plant in Trinidad and Tobago and occurs naturally in all of Central America and throughout the Caribbean. It is highly salt tolerant and also grows equally well inland. Seagrape act as a continuous sand trap and dense stands can be an effective windbreak. On exposed shores it grows as a sprawling shrub but in more sheltered areas it can reach 15 m. The leaves are rounded, smooth, with prominent reddish veins, and up to 20 cm in diameter. Throughout the year leaf drop is constant and fallen leaves take a long time to decay....

Indian Almond Tree

Indian Almond Tree

Scientific name: Terminalia catappa Introduced from Malaysia and the East Indies, this tree is found in many Caribbean islands. Since it can withstand drought, it is common on sandy shores and makes an ideal shade tree, growing to 15 m. The leaves are alternate, with a leathery texture, glossy and dark green in colour. Leaves are shed periodically, turning bright red prior to detachment. The flowers are small, white, and grow in axillary spikes. The edible fruits are oval and green. Along the coast well above the high water mark, these trees often mix with shrubs creating a forest-like environment You may also like [smart_post_show id="19584"] ...

Dr Anjani Ganase monitoring coral reefs - Institute of Marine Affairs

Tides Are Changing

By  Ruqayyah Thompson, Research Officer. International days are a powerful advocacy tool used to raise awareness on matters of public concern, garner political support and resources to address global problems as well as to celebrate humanity’s achievements. This month, we join with the global community to recognise World Oceans Day on June 8th under the theme, “Planet Ocean: Tides Are Changing”. The ocean covers over 70% of the Earth’s surface and forms 95% of the biosphere, the part of the Earth where life exists. It produces at least 50% of the world’s oxygen and is a main source of protein for over a billion people. The...

MDH Rayna Sookeo IMA

A Portal to the IMA’s Marine Data Hub (MDH) – Get excited about data sharing!

Prepared by Ms Rayna Sookdeo, On-the-Job Trainee/ Geomatics, Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA). Did you know that the Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA) has its own data-sharing platform? Yes! This news is guaranteed to excite technicians, researchers, government agencies, academia, civil society and members of the public interested in the field of marine and environmental research. Join me as I dive into the reasons why this platform has everyone talking.  Through this article, I will explore the work that the IMA does and by extension, the importance of the platform and the Marine Data Hub (MDH) and the facilitators and contributors towards the project. I will...

VR Headset enables an Immersive Experience

Using Emerging Technologies to #BeatPlasticPollution Campaign

Author: Ms. Lorraine Barrow; Top photo: Wow Factor – VR Headset enables an Immersive Experience; Photograph Credit: Alicia Kwok. The idyllic vacation package often brings to mind a stretch of a pristine, sandy beach set against crystal-clear water, framed with the sun’s rays piercing through the fronds of swaying palm trees.  Perhaps a boat on the horizon can be added to the imagination. This is an ideal setting for that perfect beach vacation! However, this is hardly the reality.  Beaches and coastal areas, once trash-free and unspoilt, have given way to carelessly discarded pieces of rubbish with tides of marine plastic debris washing up onto...

World Biodiversity Day 2023 - Attish Kanhai - IMA

From agreement to action, build back Biodiversity

By: Mr. Attish Kanhai, Benthic Ecologist, Institute of Marine Affairs. “All you need to make a movie is a girl and a gun”, French filmmaker Jean Luc-Godard was quoted as saying. Well, actually he was quoting someone else while making this quote, another filmmaker D.W. Griffith.  The implication here is that action and romance keep us glued to our screens, the gun of course representing action and the girl romance Give the girl and the gun then we’re in for a doubly good time I suppose. But I digress. Action movies take it one step further by introducing big explosions, things burning and who doesn’t...

Yellowfin Tuna

What is Overfishing?

Overfishing occurs when more fish are caught than the population can replace through reproduction. There are different types of overfishing, such as growth overfishing, where young fish are caught before they reach their optimum marketable size or are allowed to reproduce before they are caught. Recruitment overfishing occurs when the reproduction rate of fish stocks is too low to replace loss from fish naturally dying or from being caught. This results from disproportionately large reproductive fish, mainly females being targeted. There is also economic overfishing when the revenue generated from increases in fishing efforts is less than the cost of this effort. Adverse impacts of...

Donkey Eye

Donkey Eye

Scientific name: Mucuna sloanei The brown seed known as ‘Donkey eye’ begins life in inland forests borne on a climbing vine with bright yellow flowers, which overgrows other vegetation. The plant produces seed pods about 18 cm (7 in.) long. If the overgrown tree is along a stream bank, the floating seeds may find their way into rivers and get deposited along the coast by the waves and currents.15 Finding Donkey Eye seeds on the beaches of the east and south coast of Trinidad is a regular occurrence and generations of children have used them to prank others as the seeds emit heat when rubbed...