The ocean is an important part of Barbados’ eco-system and more Barbadians, especially the younger generation, should familiarize themselves with it so it gets the respect it deserves.
Long time scuba diver, Robert Bourne, made this observation at the official opening of an exhibit at the Barbados Museum entitled She Sells Sea Shells. The exhibition highlights exotic sea shells found off the coast of Barbados as well as from other countries.
Bourne urged people to visit the exhibition – the first of its kind since 1981 – stating, “It is important for children especially to come and see the shells because every child does not go to the sea. Thankfully, there are more programmes now allowing children to learn more about the ocean, and the more this happens [then] they will think twice about dumping bags in gullies and other actions that [can harm] the marine environment.”
During the exhibition’s launch, both Deputy Curator of the Museum Kevin Farmer and Chairman of the Barbados Museum and Historical Society Sir Trevor Carmichael spoke about the use of sea shells for thousands of years as tools, jewellery, currency and in religious rituals. Farmer also noted that “the calcium carbonate that makes up their structure can be used as a fertilizer as it increases the calcium content of the soil”. Bourne added: “Since these creatures are ‘bottom feeders’, they help clear algae from the ocean floor, and the trail they leave behind on the sand as they move can generate marine plant life.”
The exhibition runs until the end of October. (DH)