Cuba 2013

A group of Biology students spent more than two weeks in Cuba as part of an exciting marine biology expedition.

During the first week, all of the students became certified PADI open water divers allowing them to explore the pristine coral reef in the National Park. The expedition was based on the Isle of Youth to the south of Cuba.

In the second week, the students spent time in groups working on projects looking at monitoring the biodiversity of the coral reef, in collaboration with scientists from the University of Havana.

Activities included

  • Filming the fish in the reef, allowing them to be counted and identified using computer software
  • Living on a research boat to monitor shark populations
  • Monitoring the areas where manatee live in the mangrove forest.

Types of coral on the reef were also recorded, and invasive lion fish were caught and dissected so their stomach contents could be examined to see what they are eating on the reef to better understand how they could be controlled.

At the end of the expedition, the students were able to visit the prison museum on the island where Castro was held. They also enjoyed a full day trip of Havana before they returned home.

If you're interested in studying Biology at Alton College, you will be interested to read our subject course leaflet.