Marine lives are at risk and The Gulf Specimen Marine Laboratory needs help, fast.
The non-profit educational center has entered crisis mode after the machine used to circulate and clean water in aquarium tanks has broken beyond repair. The facility needs to purchase a new water filtration system to maintain a bacteria-free environment for its marine life.
Jack Rudloe runs the lab and says the facility is relying on donations from the public to fund a new ozone machine. “We rely on donations, yes we don’t get any grants and we certainly don’t get any state or federal funding what so ever. We are a private, stand alone, non-profit, 501C3 organization so any donations made to the aquarium are completely tax deductible,” said Rudloe.
The equipment will cost $38,000 to replace and Rudloe says they’ve already got a lead on donations. “I’m very pleased to say that we’re getting started. We’re doing some tilt funding and we’ve been able to raise $5,000.”
The laboratory has been in business for more than 50 years supplying live biological specimens to universities, high schools, and aquariums for educational programs. Rudloe says the facility hopes to have the machine installed and running by March, just in time for school children who are scheduled to visit the aquarium in the coming months.