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This profile was last updated on 7/23/15  and contains information from public web pages and contributions from the ZoomInfo community.

Captain Nancy L. Caruso

Wrong Captain Nancy L. Caruso?

Marine Biologist

Phone: (714) ***-****  
Email: n***@***.org
Local Address:  Marine , Missouri , United States

Employment History

Board Memberships and Affiliations

  • Founder
    Get Inspired!
  • Founder
    Get Inspired


  • B.S. degree , Marine Biology
    Florida Institute of Technology
74 Total References
Web References
To those complaining about the piles' ..., 21 Oct 2014 [cached]
To those complaining about the piles' pungent odor, marine biologist Nancy Caruso says to keep in mind that the slimy bundles are living ecosystems.
Kelp plays a pivotal role in the food chain, she told the Los Angeles Times ( Beach hoppers hide in the piles. In turn, those tiny invertebrates become a food source for shorebirds.
Kelp often is pulled back into the ocean by high tides, releasing reproductive spores. The process allows nutrients to seep into the sand as well.
Caruso attributes the increase to warmer water temperatures and ocean swells that dislodged kelp from reefs.
She noticed something different while scuba diving near Crystal Cove in late August, when Hurricane Marie off Baja California created massive waves along Orange County beaches.
The storm "ripped out 98 percent of the kelp from the reef," said Caruso, explaining the disgorgement would foster new plant growth.
Though many find kelp's aroma a bit too pungent, Caruso thinks it "smells good."
"I want people to understand that kelp is supposed to be here," she told the Times.
- Nancy Caruso a marine ..., 21 Mar 2013 [cached]
- Nancy Caruso a marine biologist involved with the Orange County Ocean Restoration Project and Kelpfest. Nancy founded Get Inspired!, which aims to "inspire creativity while discovering the world of science."
Nancy Caruso
But marine biologist Nancy ..., 7 Nov 2014 [cached]
But marine biologist Nancy Caruso says all that fly-ridden gunk on the beach is actually a sign of a healthy underwater ecosystem. Caruso is founder of the nonprofit Get Inspired!, which organizes volunteers and students to restore the kelp forests, and she joins us from Garden Grove, California. Welcome to Living on Earth.
CARUSO: Thank you very much I appreciate that.
CARUSO: Well, 12 years ago, myself and a group of students and volunteers all started a project to restore the kelp forests off of Orange County's coast.
CARUSO: Well it looks like trees underwater, if you can imagine.
Tour: Nancy Caruso and Pacifica High School students paddle out to evaluate the restored kelp forest. (Photo: courtesy of Nancy Caruso)
CARUSO: That's a good question. They're not called giant for nothing. So they can grow up to about 110 feet tall and they often, however, grow in water that's less than 30 feet deep. So the kelp forest grows up to the surface, then we have another 80 feet of kelp that just spreads out along the surface and creates what's called a canopy. And the canopy also provides cover for those fish that are swimming up and down our coast following the plankton, following the currents, and they can hide underneath that canopy from pelicans and other diving birds that are just waiting to eat them.
CURWOOD: So, Nancy, talk to me about how you actually restore kelp.
CARUSO: It was actually quite an effort because I had the help of 5,000 students from ages 11 to 18 as well as 250 skilled volunteer divers, and we planted this kelp in 15 different areas in Orange County. There's a spot down in Dana Point.
CARUSO: After the kids learned all the ecology and biology and how the kelp disappeared, how to protect it, they became warriors for the kelp and then the volunteers would take it out into the ocean and using a rubber band really simply attach the tile to the reef.
CARUSO: Well, it's actually a long process to collapse an ecosystem.
CARUSO: Well, first and foremost, the number one thing that we can do is to stop runoff from going into the ocean. We don't get a lot of rain here, so every time it rains or whenever you're overwatering your lawn or washing your car, that water goes down our sidewalks, down our streets, washes over everything that's on the streets and sidewalks into the sewer system and directly into the ocean in most cases. And so trying to eliminate that runoff and the things that are on the streets and on the sidewalks that go with the water into the ocean is critically important and something that everybody can do on a daily basis.
CURWOOD: So, Nancy, I've got to tell you I spent time near Capetown, South Africa, where there's a huge kelp forest offshore, and that means that on the beach there are piles and piles of this big huge kelp and it's kind of smelly, it's got a lot of flies, people feel annoyed that they can't use that part of the beach.
CARUSO: Well, kelp actually has a purpose when it washes up on the beach.
CARUSO: Well, when you go to forest and there's leaves all over the ground, most people don't complain about that because they know that that's a natural process of leaves falling on the ground. So it's really about educating people what the kelp forest ecosystem is, and why it's important, and the whole entire cycle, not just out in the ocean and underwater, that slimy stuff that grabs my ankles when I swim over it, but it's also part of the beach, coastal ecosystem.
Nancy Caruso is a marine biologist and the founder of Get Inspired!, a program that performs kelp restoration in California. (Photo: courtesy of Nancy Caruso)
CARUSO: Ummm hmmm. Exactly.
CARUSO: Well, I wanted to be a marine biologist since I was 10 years old in Virginia and ended up going to school in Florida and just by happenstance I made it out here to California and worked for a local public aquarium and that's where I really, I mean as a kid I watched Jacques Cousteau diving in the kelp forest in the Catalina Island in southern California and I often thought wow that's so cool like I wish I could go there, and when I finally ended up here I was just taken in by their majesty and their beauty.
CARUSO: Yeah. The beautiful thing was that I was looking to do work within the community. I wanted to work with people and get people excited about doing conservation work, and then this opportunity to start up the kelp program became available to me and it was exactly what I wanted to do. I've kind of been able to become a messenger for the kelp and to give it a voice so to speak, so I'll keep an eye on it for as long as I can.
CURWOOD: Nancy Caruso is the Founder of Get Inspired!
Nancy, thanks so much for taking the time with us today.
CARUSO: Thank you so very much.
PHOTO COURTESY OF NANCY ..., 25 Sept 2013 [cached]
Nancy Caruso, founder of Get Inspired! Inc., said that the students get attached and are successful in maintaining the operation, but they care so much about the fish that when there is a tragedy such as a fish death, students cry.
"I make them very aware that we are all this animal has," said Caruso. "They're scared to death to do something wrong."
This is Caruso's goal: To create a connection so strong between the seabass and the students that by the time students release the fish, they've gained not only knowledge about an ecosystem, but a passion for being stewards of the ocean.
Keeping the fish alive is more than just feeding them daily; students, with the help of teachers, Caruso and Mike Shane, a research scientist at Hubbs-SeaWorld, built the entire operation.
Caruso said her organization recently received a grant to put another white seabass tank in Warner Middle School, though it will be smaller than the high school's.
Hubbs-SeaWorld has been making the effort to grow white seabass ever since the late 1980s, when there was a sharp decline in the number of the species in the ocean, said Caruso.
"If kids don't go on that journey, they don't build that attachment," said Caruso.
Nancy Caruso, Marine ..., 7 Oct 2007 [cached]
Nancy Caruso, Marine Biologist
Nancy Caruso has served as Marine Biologist and Orange County Project Manager for CCKA's Regional Giant Kelp Restoration Project since 2002.In this role, she has taught hundreds of students about kelp forest ecology biology to help them gain an appreciation for kelp and its role in our coastal ecosystem.Ms. Caruso has also recruited and trained hundreds of volunteer SCUBA divers from around southern California to help with the project.She has presented data and information about the Kelp Restoration Project in many forums including several conferences.Prior to joining CCKA, Ms. Caruso worked was a Water Quality Technician and Biologist for the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific and ran several research projects, one of which was presented to the Southern California Academy of Sciences for her research involving Carbon Dioxide Off-Gassing in a High Biomass Exhibit.Ms. Caruso's research experience includes nutritional studies, animal enrichment programs, abalone recruitment projects, and freshwater stream conservation projects with endangered species.Ms. Caruso holds a B.S. degree in Marine Biology with an emphasis in aquaculture from the Florida Institute of Technology
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