Tag Archives: beach

#TurtleTuesday: Man O’War vs. Litter

PicMonkey Collage (1)

On the left, you will see a favorite sea turtle delicacy known as the Portuguese Man O’War.

On the right, you will see a piece of garbage I found washed up on the shore.

Look how similar these look! It is easy to see how a sea turtle might confuse this garbage as food.

Please keep the beaches clean and dispose of your trash properly! Protect the sea turtles!

Happy Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day! Earth day is a great holiday that everyone should celebrate. Whether you are inspired to pick up some trash at your favorite park or beach, or make a donation to a conservation organization, no action is too small.

We are all here together on this planet, and Earth Day helps us remember that.

Just as you should not only be nice to your mother on Mother’s Day, or only be thankful on Thanksgiving, each day we should respect our earth and strive to take care of our home planet and all of our fellow species.

Whether the citizen is a microscopic phytoplankton, a cat, a dog, a person, or a blue whale, everyone and everything deserves a safe, clean, and beautiful home!

Earth day 2016 the beach review blog

Images clockwise: John D. MacArthur Beach State Park  in North Palm Beach, Florida; An alligator relaxing at Green Cay Wetlands in Boynton Beach; An Ibis wading in Wakodahatchee Wetlands; An orange butterfly suckling nectar at Winding Waters Natural Area in West Palm; A crazy Heron; A mother wood stork with two baby wood storks in Wakodahatchee Wetlands; An anole photographed at Morikami Japanese Gardens in Delray Beach; and a beautiful pelican photographed on the Jupiter Inlet Pier. 

 

Highland Beach One-Hour Cleanup

Recently, I went on a beach walk and did a one-hour beach cleanup. I started at the northernmost entrance to Spanish River Park, where there is limited street parking on Spanish River Road. I walked north towards Highland Beach.

Overall, the beach was relatively clean, though there were a few concentrations of trash, and plenty of disturbing finds.

Though it was overcast, it was an eerily beautiful beach day.

highland beach the beach review blog ecoconscious south florida
Endless.

the beach review sailboat blog south florida

The gray sky bled into the gray sea, and without the help of a sailboat I wouldn’t have been able to tell where the horizon was.

the beach review blog travel ocean south florida

The sea was also silent, a rare sight on the east coast of Florida.

The Findings

Scary Findings (Or Reasons Why You Should Keep Your Shoes On at the Beach!)

the beach review blog glass cleanup
A piece of glass sticking straight up out of the sand. This was found in the park part of the beach, and is the reason why glass is prohibited on most beaches.
IMG_9069
I think this is a needle used for blood tests. It is hard to see in the picture, but if you look closely at the top of the teal plastic, you can see the needlepoint. Ouchies!
IMG_9084.JPG
A rusted, upturned bottle cap.

 

Other Findings

Continue reading Highland Beach One-Hour Cleanup

Video: Slow Motion Sea Hawk with Fresh Catch

This awesome video was recorded on my iPhone 6s with the slow motion capabilities. While visiting the beautiful Blowing Rocks Preserve in Hobe Sound, Florida, I captured this magnificent sight- a sea hawk carrying a large, freshly caught fish!

Let me know what you think! Enjoy the video.

A Walk on the Beach in Boca

Thought I would share some wonderful images of the last beach walk I took in 2015 for all of those reminiscing about their holiday beach vacations.

I started at the South Beach Pavilion in Boca Raton, and walked north towards Red Reef Park. The beach in front of the pavilion is usually concentrated with people, and this day was no different. (This is a favorite spot for the FAU students.) Despite all of the people, I was able to capture so very relaxed gulls. I also saw man-o-war aplenty, so beware if you are swimming in the South Florida region!

I took all of these images with my phone. Enjoy!

Resolution #2 Action Plan

Resolution 2: Donate time, money, or skills to raise awareness and help the environment

Action Plan: Donating your time to a cause you care about is one of the greatest gifts you can give to both yourself and the world. Spending time cleaning up a beach or volunteering at a local nature center will allow you to spread your passion and inspire others.

There are many different ways to help the ocean and environment, even if you are busy with a job or with a family.

If you are financially able to donate, there are many great organizations that would welcome your financial support. Most environmental organizations are non-profits, and the success of their programs relies heavily on fundraising.

Sometimes potential donors are apprehensive about donating to organizations and not knowing how the money will be spent. It’s always important to do your research, and there are websites like Charity Navigator that rate charities and provide in-depth reports as to how the funds are allocated so you can make sure your money is going to a reputable organization.

You can also search Amazon wish lists to see if your favorite organization has one. Organizations compile lists of items they are in need of, and you can purchase the item and have it sent directly to the organization of your choosing. (Check out Save-the-Manatee Club’s Amazon Wish List or the Whitney Lab’s Sea Turtle Hospital’s Amazon Wish List.)

Donating your skills is a great way give back while also building your portfolio. Maybe you are a fresh-out-of-college web designer or social media manager. A lot of smaller non-profits don’t have the time or the resources to keep their websites updated. Volunteer your services! You can help an organization, while getting a great piece for your portfolio. If you have a skill, volunteer it.

There are many different ways to make this resolution a reality in 2016. What will you do?

New Year’s Resolution #1 Action Plan

Resolution 1: Reduce personal consumption and output of plastics

Action plan: In our modern lives, it is hard to go a day without touching plastic, especially if you are an on-the-go person. This year, a viral video of a turtle with a straw stuck in its nose heartbreakingly showed us that our everyday choices are not without repercussions.  Continue reading New Year’s Resolution #1 Action Plan

The Beach Review’s 2016 Resolutions

Can you believe 2015 is almost over? Me either! The end of the year is a time for reflection. It is also a time to set goals for the new year.

Here are The Beach Review’s five major resolutions for 2016. Sharing resolutions and goals out loud promotes accountability.

Below are TBR’s resolutions for 2016.

the beach review 2016 new years resolutions environment

Over the next week, I will be breaking down each of these resolutions and providing examples that will help put these goals in to action!

I also hope that you might join me by adding one or two of these resolutions to your own list. If you do, let me know in the comment section!

Also let me know if you have any other great eco-friendly, travel, or environment-oriented resolutions you are putting on your own list! I would love to hear them.

 

6 Reasons to do a Beach Cleanup Before Summer’s Over

For most of the US, summer is winding down. Soon, the kids will be back at school and the heat and waves of summer 2015 will be a precious memory.

But for those of you who are still planning beach vacations, who are venturing south for the winter, or who are lucky to live near the beach full time, here are six reasons why you should participate in a beach cleanup before summer is officially over (or really whenever you can)!

beach cleanup the beach review sea turtles

Help protect sea turtle hatchlings and other marine life

Sea turtle season doesn’t end until October, so there are still plenty of hatchlings waiting to emerge and find their way to the ocean. We know that their journey is already hard enough, so let’s make sure that their path to the ocean is as easy as possible. Despite sea turtle nests being marked off and protected, I always find a lot of trash around the nests. Not only does this litter pose a threat to the hatchlings, but it also threatens any shore birds that search the sand for their food. The tide brings in a lot of garbage, let’s make sure it doesn’t go back out!

beach cleanup trash

Make great friends and memories

Whether you get a group of your friends together to go cleanup your favorite beach spot, or join one of the many great organizations that coordinates beach cleanups each month, you can make positive memories with friends old and new. If protecting the ocean and the environment is something you are passionate about, get outside of your comfort zone and join a group cleanup. It is a great way to meet other people who share your passions. I have met some of the nicest and friendliest people attending cleanups. People are always stoked to meet someone else who actively shares their passion for the environment!

beach cleanup trash

Beach cleanups are great exercise

Carrying buckets of garbage in the sand is an excellent workout that is sure to get your heart pumping and your body sweating. If you don’t have a grabber, which I highly recommend if you plan on frequently doing beach cleanups, you will be doing a lot of squats to pick up garbage. Most organized beach cleanups last about two hours, a great amount of time for a workout out in the fresh, salty air. It’s a fantastic way to start the day!

bucket and ocean

You can be the change

It’s easy to get caught up in our busy lives and get stuck behind our computer’s keyboard. If you want to see a difference in the world, be the difference. It’s as simple as that. Participating in a beach cleanup is a rewarding experience, and if you have never done one, I am sure you will be shocked by the amount of garbage you will find.

IMG_6066

Beach cleanups are a great time for introspection

Whether you are cleaning up the beach on your own or with a group, a beach cleanup is a great time to analyze your own choices when it comes to both consumption and disposal. When you actually see first hand the amount of garbage carelessly left behind, it may lead you to reexamine your own choices. Being conscious of our own consumption, and what happens to our own garbage can lead us to make changes that lower our own footprint.

IMG_6093

You can raise awareness

Raising awareness about the plight of the fragile shore ecosystems is important. Many people thoughtlessly extinguish their cigarette butts in the sand, and leave them behind, probably thinking it’s just me, no biggie. But when many people adopt this mentality, that is when the beaches become, for lack of a better word, gross. I think it’s a great idea to photograph garbage as you cleanup. Take pictures of the amount of cigarette butts you find, or the weirdest item you find. Then share, share, share! Share across all your social media platforms! People by nature are very visual creatures, so actually showing instead of telling is a fantastic way to raise awareness to the issue of beach litter. Maybe, just maybe, someone will think twice before leaving behind a styrofoam cup, or not disposing of fishing line properly because of an image or experience you share.

Beach cleanups are a ton of fun, and even though summer is almost over, many groups organize beach cleanups year round. Whenever you get the opportunity, I strongly urge you to spend a morning or afternoon doing a beach cleanup!

IMG_6092

Check out some of these South Florida organizations to see when they are doing their next beach cleanup:

Surfrider Foundation Chapters worldwide

Sea Angels South Florida, monthly cleanups

Stoked on Salt South Florida

The Beach Review Action Committee South Florida

Also check out local meet-ups on Meetup.com.

Be sure to mark your calendar for Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup on September 19th, 2015!

If you run an organization that facilitates beach cleanups, feel free to comment with a link to your website!

IMG_6085