PUPILS from Ellesmere College have travelled across the Atlantic to work alongside marine biologists.

During the summer, 16 pupils headed to Belize in the Caribbean to work with scientists studying the lion-fish population which is spiralling out of control, meaning it needs to monitored on a daily basis.

While there, they also took part in underwater surveys and studied other aquatic species, as well as being faced with the shocking effects of plastic pollution.

Ian Williams, who went with the students on the life-changing trip, was shocked with the enormity of the problem with plastics in Belize.

He said: “I cannot stress enough how shocked I was about how bad the plastic pollution is on the beaches here.

“I feel very privileged to have taken this group of students and hope that the real world problems they encountered will encourage them all to share their experiences and consider the ways in which we can minimise our impact on the environment in the future.

“I would like to thank the scientific team and camp staff for their support and allowing us to share this unique experience with them.”

During their stay, the pupils had a large amount of daily tasks to do, including raking the beach to kill sand flies, cooking for the team and cleaning.

The team also found the lack of network coverage on their trip liberating.

In its absence it meant that students could use their spare time to relax, play cards, chat and have spontaneous games of cricket and volleyball.