American expedition for Bangor Zoologists

Staff and students from the School of Biological Sciences during their study visit to Floriad.Staff and students from the School of Biological Sciences during their study visit to Florida.A group of students from north Wales have returned from a research trip which saw them wading through swamps, canoeing through mangroves and swimming over coral reefs.

As part of their degrees in Zoology, Bangor University students spent a week around the Florida Everglades studying the area’s unique wildlife.

The group travelled across the American state visiting different habitats and conservation projects.

Head of biological sciences at Bangor University, Professor George Turner, organised the visit to America in partnership with colleagues from Florida Gulf Coast University.

“Away from all the main tourist attractions Florida is a fantastic place for anyone interested in wildlife and the natural world,” said Prof Turner.

“The students got to see all of the area’s most famous animals such as alligators, dolphins, manatees and bald eagles.

“More importantly they also got to observe some of the smaller, more reclusive species and study how they fit into their habitats too.

“No zoologist could fail to be inspired by the variety and adaptations of the Florida wildlife,” he said.

“This trip was especially memorable because we got to help with a bird ringing project, wade up to our waists through a Cypress swamp and snorkel over a coral reef.”

“It really is one of the highlights for those studying for a Zoology degree at Bangor University and I’m sure next year’s trip will be just as good,” added Prof Turner.

Sally Roberts, who was one of the 22 students on the field course, described the trip was one of the best weeks of her life.

“It was amazing, I still can’t believe how much we managed to fit into just one week,” she said.

“One of my favourite parts was canoeing through the mangroves because you could get so close to the wildlife – once I’d learnt how to stop capsizing of course,” the 20-year-old from Wrexham joked.

If you would like more information about studying for a degree in Zoology at Bangor University visit www.bangor.ac.uk/biology or call 01248 382527.

Publication date: 14 December 2010