Expedition Journal

January 25, 1996
The Last Croc Hunt

Today was our last day catching crocs with Frank Mazzotti and Laura Brandt. We got to scrub the boats this morning before we went out. They were so dirty from going through the hanging mangroves yesterday. All three of us, in our swimsuits, armed with our brushes and soft scrub, cleaned the two boats. It was actually fun!

The wind was pretty strong today and we bounced around quite a lot before reaching Deer Island. There we trudged through the muck and mud again. Sometimes we couldn't even move our feet because the mud was so thick. We looked for an eagle's nest and saw two eagles flying around. The scientists told us that their wing span is five feet. Two of our scientists went and looked at the eagles nest and found two four-day old chicks. We also searched for terrapins (kind of like snapping turtles) but couldn't find any. However, we did find a water snake and it used our hands to shed its skin. That was really neat.

After that we went to the sandy beach part of the island. We saw all kinds of trees: Black Mangrove, Red Mangrove, Madeira Mahogany, Gumbo-limbo (nicknamed the "tourist tree" because its skin peels like a sunburned tourist), Seagrape, Bay Cedar, Seven Ear Apple, Blackbead, and a Palm tree sprouting from a coconut.

We also found an old crocodile nest site and a new one that we didn't know about. That one was successful. We saw some pretty shells on the beach also. We were going to hunt for more crocodiles but it started to rain so we decided to head towards the shore. It was really fun, lying on the bow of the boat, going full speed towards the shore while the rain was hitting our faces.

The Croc Team:
Emily Hudson
Rebecca Somers
Danielle Nettesheim

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Gene Carl Feldman (gene@seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov) (301) 286-9428
Todd Carlo Viola, JASON Foundation for Education (todd@jason.org)
Revised: 26 Jan 1996