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Gulf of Mexico Foundation
Science & Spanish Club News

    March 2011 - Gonzales rubs elbows with famous actor
    March 2011 - World Seagrass Day educates about ecosystem
    Feb 2011 - Whooping crane founder meets with local group
    Feb 2011 - Aransas River/Copano Bay new trash hot spot
    Jan 2011 - Port Lavaca continues phytoplankton monitoring
    Jan 2011 - Students photograph changes in coastal habitat
    Dec 2010 - First Flash Flock Party held to celebrate biologist
    Dec 2010 - SSCN continues Matagorda Island beach cleanups
    Dec 2010 - Students embark on early morning birding voyage
    Oct 2010 - Rio Research Roundup brings watershed into focus
    Sept 2010 - GMF participates in teachers night at museum
    Sept 2010 - Students learn about environment during cleanup
    Sept 2010 - Martin SSC students recognized by principal
    Aug 2010 - SSCN to include sites along Whooping Crane trail
    Archived Articles
Gonzales rubs elbows with famous actor

GMF SSCN Project Coordinator Richard Gonzales, right, poses with Hollywood star Pepe Serna at a Corpus Christi school in March.
March 13, 2021 - SSCN project coordinator Richard Gonzales met up with Hollywood star Pepe Serna in the hallways of Martin Middle School today and presented him a GMF reusable bag and a World Seagrass Day T-shirt. Gonzales was on campus to leave letters of recommendation for three SSCN students applying to the Moody High School Innovative Academy. Serna, a Hollywood actor who is originally from Corpus Christi and most notably appeared in the movie "Scarface" with Al Pacino, often tours schools while visiting his hometown. ^ top

World Seagrass Day educates about ecosystem

SSCN students examine an aquatic robot designed to help humans conduct ongoing seagrass monitoring in Redfish Bay. PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
March 2011 - World Seagrass Day on March 4 was established by the GMF’s Science & Spanish Club Network as a way to promote and increase public education and outreach about the importance of seagrasses in ecosystems around the world. Redfish Bay, which connects several communities in the Texas Coastal Bend, is a Texas Parks & Wildlife designated State Scientific Study Area because of vast seagrass meadows that attract thousands of outdoor recreationalists who benefit from seagrass ecosystems. Exhibitors included Port Aransas Girl Scouts, Aransas Pass Boy Scouts, Texas A&M; University-Corpus Christi, Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Fulton Learning Center, Welder Wildlife Refuge, Texas Master Naturalists, Blaschke-Sheldon Elementary Science & Spanish Club, and the Aransas Pass Moose Family Center Scholarship & Family Fishing Tournament Committees. ^ top

Whooping crane founder meets with local group

International Crane Foundation founder Dr. George Archibald (far right) poses with members of a group creating a watershed DVD.
February 2011 - International Crane Foundation founder and ornithologist Dr. George Archibald was the guest of honor at the Texas Whooping Crane Festival held Febraury 24-17 in Port Aransas, Texas. During the festival, Archibald met with GMF's SSCN Coordinator Richard Gonzales and his cohorts who are working on a Guadalupe River watershed DVD educational product that will include a Whooping Crane module. ^ top

Aransas River/Copano Bay new trash hot spot

After cleaning up a new Adopt-A-Beach location, SSCN students put together some of the most unusual items they found and took this photo which they named 'Super Bowl Party Girl.' PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
February 2011 - The SSCN responded to the needs of concerned residents from the Bayside community to conduct ongoing trash cleanups in that coastal community about 25 miles northeast of Corpus Christi. SSCs from Sinton, Ingleside and Corpus Christi conducted the Winter Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup on February 12 at their usual Lighthouse Lakes Trail Park and then traveled 20 miles to the new cleanup site where the Aransas River enters Copano Bay on the border of Aransas County and Refugio County, just south of Bayside. Students picked up more than 2000 pounds of trash. ^ top

Port Lavaca continues phytoplankton monitoring

SSCN students identify species of phytoplankton gathered in Lavaca Bay.
PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
January 2011 - Port Lavaca SSC faculty sponsor Sherrie Krause has led her students in weekly monitoring and species identification of phytoplankton found in samples taken from Lavaca Bay over the past three years. Krause, who is also a Texas Master Naturalist, has used her students as a part of the National Phytoplankton Monitoring Program's (NPMP) national community-based monitoring expansion. Students collect water samples and then probe the microscope to identify species of phytoplankton. The results are reported to Jeff Paternoster in South Carolina at the NPMP headquarters. ^ top

Students photograph changes in coastal habitat

SSCN student records habitat changes in Lavaca Bay, Texas.
PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF

January 2011 - The Port Lavaca SSCs from Travis Middle School and Calhoun High School have been photographing the marsh area around the City of Port Lavaca Bayfront Park since the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year. Several students take cameras out on the weekly field trips to record the change in habitat as the season changes. They will use this information as a Powerpoint presentation on coastal habitats. ^ top

First Flash Flock Party held to celebrate biologist

First Flash Flock Party was held in Port Aransas, Texas, on New Year's Eve. PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
December 2010 - More than 654 people came dressed in red, white and black for the first ever Flash Flock Party held at noon on December 31 at Conn Brown Harbor in Aransas Pass, Texas. The event was the third year the SSCN has celebrated the founding date of the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, the winter home to the endangered Whooping Crane. In addition, the day was designated “Tom Stehn Day” to honor the Aransas Pass resident, who is also the lead wildlife biologist that oversees the local Whooping Crane restoration efforts. The SSCN has been asked to assist in the planning for the 75th Anniversary Celebration of the ANWR in 2013.
^ top

SSCN continues Matagorda Island beach cleanups

GMF SSCN students from Martin Middle School in Corpus Christi prepare for a clean up on Matagorda Island. PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
December 2010 - The Sinton and Martin MS SSCs conducted two more cleanups on Matagorda Island on November 13 and December 11, gathering about 12 tons of trash from the Gulf side of the island, which is a Marine Protected Area. A combination of the four cleanups that SSCN students have conducted since October 2009, more than 50 tons of trash have been picked up at Matagorda. During the event, students receive hands-on comparative coastal habitat training form USFWS staffers, Vivcki Muller and Tonya Nix. ^ top

Students embark on early morning birding voyage

A SSC student spots a bird through a scope while bird watching aboard the Skimmer vessel in Mesquite Bay.
PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
December 2010 - Students from Ingleside, Sinton and Corpus Christi SSCs boarded the Skimmer birding tour boat in Fulton, Texas, and conducted birding observation of more than 25 Whooping Cranes in the early mornings of November 13 and December 11. They spotted individual birds such as “Lobstick,” the oldest living male Whooping Crane, and his new mate “Lipstick” and their chick “Chapstick” who have claimed a vast wetlands area as their winter home at the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, about 40 miles north of Corpus Christi. ^ top

Rio Research Roundup brings watershed into focus





School kids in Colorado gather water samples in the river near their school.

School kids in Texas gather water samples from Corpus Christi Bay.

GMF's Richard Gonzales, center, CILA Director David Negrete and RGISC Board President Danny Gunn with a stack of boxes they stuffed with water sampling kits to send to schools for Dia del Rio.
October 2010 - The GMF's Rio Research Roundup event started on October 6 with more than 50 student teams gathering water samples all along the watershed of the Rio Grande River (Rio Bravo in Spanish). Each team collected samples from their local rivers, estuaries and bays, which make up the Gulf of Mexico watershed.
   The water sampling project was coordinated by GMF's Science & Spanish Club Project Coordinator Richard Gonzales, and one aspect of the Rio Grande International Study Center's "Dia del Rio 2010" (Day of the River), which celebrates the Rio Grande as it courses from alpine Rocky Mountains to the Gulf of Mexico. The basin drains water from Colorado, New Mexico, Texas and Mexico.
   To initiate the project,  Gonzales and other organizers distributed water quality kits to more than 50 schools along the watershed. Students then used the kits to take water samples from the river near their school, measuring 10 chemical parameters and assessing their individual site, regional sites and the entire watershed.
   Some of the student groups produced short videos of their project, which can be viewed at GMF's YouTube Channel.
   On October 16, Dia del Rio, all the water samples were poured into the Gulf of Mexico at the Rio Grande's mouth during a ceremonial mixing.

GMF participates in teachers night at museum

GMF's Suraida Nanez-James, left, shows a Down Under Out Yonder hat to Yolanda Aviles, SSCN faculty sponsor from Martin Middle School, right, and Robstown teacher Kathy Clapper, center. PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
September 2010 - The Gulf of Mexico Foundation was one of dozens of environmental organizations that reached out to more than 400 classroom teachers during the Annual Coastal Bend Informal Educators Teacher Resource Extravaganza held at the Corpus Christi Museum of Science & Histroy on September 28. Two GMF staff members participated. Project Coordinator Richard Gonzeles promoted the GMF's Science & Spanish Network, while GMF Project Assistant Suraida Nanez-James promoted GMF’s teacher summer training opportunities -- the Intracoastal Waterway Wetlands Cruise, a four-day excursion for near-shore experiences, and the Down Under Out Yonder underwater scuba experience at the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. ^ top

Students learn about environment during cleanup

SSC faculty sponsor Robin Flores shows students a plastic container with turtle bite marks on it, explaining how many marine animals mistake human-made products for natural food. PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF
September 2010 - SSCs with over 140 students from Tidehaven, Port Lavaca, Sinton, Ingleside and Corpus Christi went to Matagorda Beach, Magnolia Beach, Corpus Christi Beach and the Lighthouse Lakes Trail Park to help clean up shorelines and beaches on September 27. Sinton and Ingleside, with 70 volunteers picked up 1,500 pounds of trash, including a plastic container with turtle bite marks found along the banks of the Lydia Ann Channel in Aransas Pass. ^ top

Martin SSC students recognized by principal

Martin Middle School SSC students carry a turtle prop that they will use to decorate the GMF booth at BayFest in Corpus Christi in September.
PHOTO: Richard Gonzales/GMF

September 2010 - The SSC from Martin Middle School had a long and rewarding day on Saturday, September 25. Their coastal environmental field trip started at 8 am with a trip to Corpus Christi Beach to participate in the Texas Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup at the Texas State Aquarium. By noon they were on their way to the Adventure Bay Tent as part of the 34th Annual BayFest Celebration, joining 15 other environmental organizations in conducting public outreach activities. Before heading back home, they stopped at Dairy Queen for a meal.  Unknown to the students, the assistant principal from a neighboring school was watching them at DQ and was prompted to write the following email to their principal:
My family and I were eating at Dairy Queen in Portland and ran into some of your students. They were in bright yellow shirts - Spanish and Science Club? I just wanted to compliment them on their wonderful behavior. Usually after field trips kids are loud and unruly; yours were not! They represented Martin MS proudly and deserve to be recognized! Go Trojans! Go Rangers!!
- Laura Delgado, Assistant Principal, Driscoll Middle School
^ top

SSCN to include sites along Whooping Crane trail
Aug 2010 - The GMF's Science & Spanish Club Network will be collaborating with several entities as it looks to develop a Whooping Crane curriculum over the next two years. “We are also adding sites along the other Whooping Crane migratory path from Necedah, Wisconsin to St. Marks, Florida, said Richard Gonzales, SSCN Project Coordinator. After the end points of the two pathways are in place within the SSCN, the GMF will look to add the most motivated communities where Whoopers tend to stop along the way.
   Cam Baker (photo at right), Chief of Staff for the Office of the Minister Environment, points to the path of the migratory Whooping Crane through his Province of Saskatchewan as it travels from there to the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge in Austwell, Texas. The Canadian delegation was invited by the World Affairs Council and the US State Department to the Coastal Bend of Texas to explore new Climate Change policies.
^ top

Archived articles

Gulf of Mexico Foundation - PMB 51, 5403 Everhart - Corpus Christi, TX 78411
(800) 884-4175 toll free - (361) 882-3939 phone - (361) 882-1262 fax
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webmaster: Carrie Robertson


2010-2011 CALENDAR

Feb 18 - Aransas National Wildlife Refuge Whooping Crane tour + boat cruise on Skimmer

Feb 19 - Shrimp Poster Competition presentation in Rockport, Texas

Feb 25-27 - Port Aransas Whooping Crane Festival

March 5  - Seagrass Festival of Knowledge, Aransas Pass Civic Center, using distance technology to link Puerto Rico, Mexico, Canada, Florida and Texas.

March 6 - Fulton Oyster Fest Parade (Redfish Bay Trash & Seagrass Parade collaboration)

March 6 - Redfish Bay Cleanup

March 6 - Walking Wetlands Tour at UTMSI with Ingleside, Corpus Christi, Sinton, Aransas Pass SSCs

March 6 - Coastal Cleanup at Redfish Bay Lighthouse Lakes Trail Park with OxyChem

April 17 - 4th Annual Bahia Grande Limpienato & Coastal Cleanup in Port Isabel and South Padre Island with SSCs from Matamoros, Brownsville & Port Isabel, plus other groups

April 17 - Earth Day Bay Day in Corpus Christi with SSCs from Aransas Pass, Corpus Christi & Ingleside in Texas Parks & Wildlife tent

April 24 - Matagorda Island Shoreline Cleanup with SSCs from Port Lavaca, Ingleside, Aransas Pass, Corpus Christi & Sinton, Texas

April 24 - Earth Day Arbor Day with SSC from Brownsville, Texas

May - San Patricio County “Living & Working in the Coastal Zone” and “Econmy=Ecology Week” at Sinton Discovery Center

June 11-13 - Shrimporee in Aransas Pass with SSCs from Corpus Christi, Sinton, Ingleside at Redfish Bay Seagrass tent

June 9-10 - SSCN 2010 Faculty Training at Discovery Center in Sinton, Texas

June 14-16 - SSCN Project Coordinator in Galveston to make environmental education presentation to Equatorial Guinea delegation for artificial reef project

June 26 - Colegio Juvenal Rendon 20th Anniversary Alumni Reunion in Matamoros, Mexico

July 1-4 - GMF exhibit at Sail South Texas 2010 Tall Ships celebration

July 24 - GMF exhibit at Texas General Land Office Coastal Expo at Texas State Aquarium in Corpus Christi

Aug 3-5 - SSCN Project Coordinator at All Hands Meeting with Gulf of Mexico Alliance in Biloxi, Mississippi

Sept 25 - Texas GLO Fall Adopt-A-Beach Cleanups for SSCs from Corpus Christi, Aransas Pass, Ingleside, Sinton, Port Lavaca

Oct 6 - Rio Research Roundup, 60 schools conduct water quality testing along Rio Grande/Rio Bravo/Gulf of Mexico watershed, 11am CDT/10am MDT

Oct 15-16 - Texas Coastal Expo Tent at 63rd Annual Rice festival in Bay City for SSCs from Bay City, Van Vleck and Palacios

Oct 15 - Dia del Rio reception in Port Isabel for SSCs from Port Isabel, Brownsville and Matamoros

Oct 16 - GMF SSCs from Brownsville, Port Isabel and Matamoros in Dia Del Rio Rio Grande Watershed Ceremony at Boca Chica, Texas

Oct 23 - SSCN participate in US Forest Service's climate change initiative called FOCUS (Forests, Oceans, Climate and Us)

Oct 30 - Corpus Christi Martin Middle School SSC at Rookery Island Cleanup

Nov 6 - SSCN Gulf of Mexico Youth Leadership & Stewardship Conference, Aransas Pass, Texas

Nov 13 - Van Vleck SSC to Restore America’s Estuaries marsh planting in Galveston

Nov 13 - Sinton and Corpus Christi Martin SSCs on Skimmer boat for Whooping Crane Tour and Matagorda Island Cleanup

Nov 29 - Sinton HS SSC and Welder Conservation Leadership Club to Welder Wildlife for nature photography

Dec 6 - Project Coordinator at Martin Middle School for meeting on improving TAKS science scores

Dec 7 - Project Coordinator at Port Isabel for Bahia Grande best management practices meeting

Dec 10-11 Sinton HS SSC and Welder Conservation Leadership Club to Welder Wildlife for overnight

Dec 11 - Ingleside Elementary SSC on Skimmer boat for Whooping Crane Tour and Matagorda Island Cleanup

Dec 11 - Port Lavaca SSCs to Matagorda Island for cleanup and to learn about Whooping Crane habitat management

Dec 15 - SSCN at Headwaters to Tidewaters watershed concept design meeting at Hart Research Institute, TAMU-CC

Dec 16 - Corpus Christi, Aransas Pass, Sinton, Port Lavaca SSCs to Welder Wildlife Refuge for training on comparative habitats

Dec 16 - Sinton SSC to Welder Wildlife for nature photography

Jan 10, 2021 - Project Coordinator at Texas Seagrass Monitoring Working Group meeting for Seagrass Festival of Knowledge planning

March 4, 2021 - 2nd Annual World Seagrass Day with Seagrass Festival of Knowledge in Aransas Pass

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


   Aransas Pass
    · Aransas Pass High (pdf)
    · AC Blunt Middle School
   Bay City
    · Bay City Middle School
    · Dr. Juliette Garcia Middle (pdf)
   Corpus Christi
    · Martin Middle School (pdf)
   El Maton
    · Tidehaven Intermediate (pdf)
    · Blaschke Elementary School
   Port Isabel
    · Colegio Rendon
   Port Lavaca
    · Calhoun High School
    · Travis Middle School (pdf)
    · Rockport-Fulton Middle School
    · Smith Junior High (pdf)
    · Sinton High School
   Van Vleck
    · Van Vleck High School(pdf)

   St. Mark's

   Necedeh, Wisconsin
   NW Territories, Canada
   Stafford, Kansas


    Penuelas, Puerto Rico
    · Rafael Irrizary Middle (pdf)
    US Virgin Islands
    · St. Croix Central High School

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


2010 - Coastal Management Program Grant Cycle 15

2009 - Gulf of Mexico Program Gulf Guardian Award Binational category

2008 - Texas General Land Office Coastal Management Program Grant Cycle 13 recipient

2008 - The Conservation Fund National Forum on Children and Nature Top 30 Programs in America recipient

2007 - Coastal Impact Assistance Program Grant Cycle 2 recipient

2007 - Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Environmental Excellence Award Winner-Youth Category

2007 - Gulf of Mexico Alliance Environmental Education Committee Best Practices Demonstration Program for Underserved/Underrepresented Populations

2007 - Texas General Land Office Coastal Management Program Grant Cycle 12 recipient

2007 - Ocean Conservancy’s 1st Caribbean Ocean Summit for Youth Invited participants to represent the Gulf of Mexico

2006 - Boys & Girls Club of America National Dragonfly Quest Science Fair Competition in the Environmental Science category

2006 - Coastal Bend Bays Foundation Environmental Stewardship Award-Middle School category

2005 - Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Environmental Excellence Award Finalist-Non-Profit Organization category

2003 - Coastal Impact Assistance Program Grant Cycle 1 recipient

2001 - Corpus Christi Independent School District Innovative Idea Grant Winner-Middle School Category

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