Roatan Institute for Marine Science
Roatan Bay Island's Marine Research & Educational Facility
The Roatan Institute for Marine Science (RIMS) is ideally located for marine study on the northwest coast of Roatan where over 30 miles of fringing and barrier reefs, seagrass beds, mangroves and shoreline are home to an astonishing profusion of life.
Founded in 1989, the primary objective of this facility is the preservation of Roatan's natural resources through education and research. In the past decade RIMS has established itself as a dedicated teaching institution. Our facility is visited year-round by colleges, universities and high schools from abroad to study tropical marine ecosystems and the bottlenose dolphins we house at our facility. Many programs are for academic credit, some are in conjunction with other field research stations, and others are simply introductory courses to the ecology of coral reefs in the Caribbean.
The RIMS facility is open 7am until 5pm daily.
Dedicated to Roatan Dolphins & Marine Ecosystems Education
Eldon Bolton, Director of RIMS
Eldon was instrumental in the establishment of this facility and has been here since the facility opened its doors in 1989. He is involved in every aspect of its operations. He is in charge of the management, care and training of the bottlenose dolphins we house at our facility and oversees the education department and the research projects that are underway.
Jennifer Keck, Education Coordinator
The Education Coordinator will be the first person you have contact with, often months before your arrival. Jennifer can assist you in planning your trip and help with all the logistics so that you may concentrate on developing the curriculum. Most professors, even those returning, find her help invaluable. Depending on your needs, Jennifer can help you with some or all of the following:
Assisting in developing a course itinerary and arranging boats and classroom times. This should be done prior to arrival. Providing lectures to your class on a variety of topics.Serving as a naturalist, assisting your class in keying out organisms, developing independent research projects and providing important information on the local marine environments.As a certified dive master, she will accompany your class on all field trips. Dive profiles will be discussed and important reef features will be pointed out.
Animal Care Staff at RIMS
A caring, professional staff is directly involved with the care, maintenance, training and research of our resident bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncates). The efforts and tremendous energy of these dedicated individuals are vital to the success of our facility and provide the animals with a healthy and stimulating environment. The senior staff members offer in-depth lectures into the lives of the bottlenose dolphins we share this facility with. The amount of interaction, education and possible observational studies involving these marine mammals can be discussed with the Educational Coordinator when planning your itinerary.