Aerial View of Broad Key. Photo by Dr. Neil Hammerschlag.
We’re quickly approaching our one year anniversary of a UM presence on Broad Key, and so its time for our inaugural blog post! For those of you who have been under rocks, Broad Key is a private 64-acre island just north of Key Largo that RSMAS is now leasing as a research station. It is covered by a pristine upland hardwood hammock and low lying mangrove forest, and is surrounded by diverse deep channel and shallow seagrass environments, while the coral reefs of Hawk Channel are a stone’s throw away. The island has two docks, a boathouse, two smaller houses (for the caretakers and island owner) and a six bathroom five bedroom main house.
Aerial View of Broad Key. Photo by Dr. Neil Hammerschlag
We have renovated the house which now has a newly sealed roof and railing on the top deck, high efficiency air conditioners, bunk beds, comfy mattresses, and ceiling fans in every bedroom, new furniture in the common areas, and all new kitchen appliances. We’ve also installed an HD projector and screen in the living room for presentations and classes. There are 5 stand-up fiberglass paddle boards, 10 tandem kayaks, a bunch of wetsuits, masks and fins, 10 scuba tanks, and an air compressor to support exploration around the island and research.
We have many more plans for the coming months and the island will continue to improve! If you haven’t seen the island yet and would like to visit, contact me or visit our facebook page.
Sunset at Broad Key. Photo by Dr. Evan D'Alessandro
– Dr. Evan D’Alessandro
Visiting Assistant Professor
Broad Key Research Station Manager
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