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Seashell ID Guide Expansions

Updated: Jun 3, 2023

By: Chandler Olson and Emma Torija

Seahorse and Co, a website dedicated to showcasing the beauty of our worlds biodiversity, was awarded the Levitetz Innovation Seed Grant this Fall. The grant, worth $1000, has allowed the team to make significant advancements in their work, including traveling to the University of Florida Museum of Natural History Collection to photograph shells in the malacology collection

One of the most exciting uses of the funding was to travel to the University of Florida Museum of Natural History Collection, where the team was able to photograph shells in the malacology collection. This opportunity was made possible by Dr. Gustav Pauley, the curator of the collection, and John Slapinsky, the collection manager, who were both incredibly generous with their time and knowledge. The team was especially interested in land snails, which they hope to feature in future work.

Images from the University of Florida Malacology Collection Visit

The expansions from the University of Florida Visit are now live on the website. This includes 130 new species to the Eastern Seaboard and Gulf of Mexico ID guides! With these additions the guides now include 596 species in total!

In addition to the trip to Florida, the grant also contributed to the purchase of flashes for the website's photography set-up, which allowed the team to take high-quality photos for future expansions. These were also used for the Winter expansions photographed at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia. The will be an important tool in all future additions to the website as well!

The Levitetz Innovation Seed Grant also required participation in workshops aimed at helping the team reflect on their Seahorse and Co project and set goals for its future. These workshops were valuable in guiding the team's future directions and plans.

Finally, the Levitetz Innovation Seed Grant required participation in their annual Innovation Day and Pitch Presentation Competition. Emma Torija represented Seahorse and Co at the presentation and impressed the judges with the team's project and future plans. Her presentation received great reviews and was a testament to the success of the grant.

Overall, the Levitetz Innovation Seed Grant has been a tremendous help to Seahorse and Co, allowing them to expand their website and explore new avenues of research. The team is grateful for the funding and looks forward to continuing to build on the progress they have made with this support.

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