Teachers On Tower | NOAA | Sea Grant

FPTower Inc. Partners with Teachers on the Tower for Marine Life Protection

The Frying Pan Tower, a sentinel rising from the Atlantic, stands not just as a symbol of human achievement, but also as a vital platform for protecting the incredible marine life thriving beneath its shadow. FPTower Inc. is deeply committed to safeguarding this vibrant ecosystem, and we’re thrilled to announce a groundbreaking collaboration with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the North Carolina Sea Grant program.

This unique program called “Teachers on The Tower” involves a team of dedicated marine biologists and scientists embarking on a six-day expedition to the Frying Pan Tower. Immersed in this unparalleled environment, while staying on the tower with all the comforts of a land based facility, these experts will gather crucial data to enhance our understanding of the ocean’s complex systems.

Unveiling the Ocean’s Secrets, One Sample at a Time

Throughout their stay, participants will be actively engaged in a variety of critical tasks:

  • Real-time Data Collection: Using sophisticated equipment, the team will meticulously monitor basic chemical and physical ocean trends, including barometric pressure, pH, temperature, salinity, and wind patterns. This data provides a real-time snapshot of the ocean’s health, allowing scientists to track changes and identify potential threats.
  • Avian Biology and Behavior: Researchers will turn their attention to the feathered residents of the tower, studying their behavior and population dynamics. This information helps us understand the broader marine ecosystem and the vital role these birds play in the food chain.
  • Meiofauna Marvels: The microscopic world beneath the waves holds immense significance. Meiofauna collection and identification will unveil the hidden diversity of this essential component of the ocean floor.
  • Plankton Powerhouses: Plankton, tiny organisms drifting at the ocean’s surface, form the base of the marine food web. Through plankton tows, scientists will gain valuable insights into the health and productivity of the ecosystem.
  • Underwater Camera Chronicles: Mounted cameras will continuously capture the underwater world, providing a 24/7 view of the diverse species that call these waters home. Daily species lists and counts will paint a vivid picture of the tower’s marine inhabitants.
  • Night Sky Spectacle: As darkness falls, the team will turn their gaze upwards. Astronomical observations from the Dwarf II, the tower’s portable tracking telescope, will offer a unique glimpse into the vastness of the universe, reminding us of the intricate connection between all things.

This expedition is more than just data collection; it’s a critical step towards ensuring the future of marine life around Frying Pan Tower. The knowledge gained will inform conservation efforts, allowing us to develop effective strategies for safeguarding this irreplaceable ecosystem.

Stay tuned for future updates! FPTower Inc. will be following the team’s progress closely, sharing their discoveries and insights along the way. Together, we can ensure the Frying Pan Tower remains a beacon not just of history, but also of environmental awareness and responsible stewardship.


Restoring Frying Pan Tower™

FPTower Inc., is a non-profit organization dedicated to the mission of restoring Frying Pan Tower™. Our purpose is to  restore, protect and preserve the retired USCG light tower so it can continue to provide safety to mariners in the Atlantic, offer shelter to a natural ecosystem for marine wildlife, and be a resource for environmental research and education studies.

There are many ways you can help us achieve this goal, but the biggest impact you can make is by giving a monetary contribution. Every dollar counts with 100% of the proceeds being used to cover the costs of restoration and repairs.