Posts Tagged With: oceans

It’s a Garden of Eels!

It’s a Garden of Eels!

We have one more animal to meet and another day of diving! We are so excited to meet these little fish who bury themselves in the sand.

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Spotted Garden Eel Fun Facts:

  • They are around 40 cm long- about the size of two pencils.
  • Spotted garden eels have gills and tiny pectoral fins.
  • They dig a burrow where most of there body is protected.
  • You will find them living in small to large colonies.
  • They grab tiny plankton as it drifts by.
  • Spotted garden eels rarely leave their burrow.
  • Spotted garden eels have excellent eye sight.

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Whew! We are so tired after 3 days of diving with our campers! We know you guys must be tired too! Tomorrow we head back to base camp and it will be time for crafts! Woohoo!

Categories: adventure, Animals, camp, Children, conservation, education, Environment, fish, nature, oceans, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meeting a SeaEdmond

Meeting a SeaEdmond

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Our week of diving is continuing at camp and we are meeting a seahorse- or a SeaEdmond as we like to call them! Everyone ready? Grab those flippers and let’s goooooo!

Lined Seahorse Fun Facts:

  • These tiny crustacean eaters are fish!
  • Lined seahorses camouflage in with their surroundings and ambush their prey.
  • Their eyes can rotate around and move independently of each other.
  • Males are larger and have longer tails than females.
  • They mate for life.
  • Like other seahorses, the males incubate the eggs in a pouch. They give birth to the baby seahorses. They are about the size of a flat thumbtack.
  • These little guys are not strong swimmers and attach to sea grass or other substrate to protect themselves.

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lined seahorse

Categories: adventure, Animals, camp, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, fish, nature, oceans, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Peacock in the Ocean

Peacock in the Ocean

We’re loading up the SS E&E- our research boat with campers for the next three days as we head out to sea! It’s time for all our campers to grab their scuba gear and go diving! We’re exploring the ocean floor today! If we’re looking for a flat fish, so keep those eyes peeled for the Peacock flounder!

peacock flounder

Peacock Flounder Fun Facts:

  • They are known as the flowery flounder.
  • Peacock flounders have flower shaped blue spots.
  • They have have two eyes on the left side of their body.
  • Each eye can move in all directions. They can move independently of each other.
  • Flounder fry (babies) swim like normal fish. Their eyes on each side of their body. As they mature the eyes move to one side! CRAZY!
  • Peacock flounders prey on crabs, shrimp and small fish.
  • Peacock flounders have specialized skin cells that allow them to change their color to match their surroundings! They can do this in as little as 8 seconds.

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Peacock flounders are amazing animals! These flat fish are masters of camouflage! We are glad our campers were able to spot a few! Hehehe!

 

 

Categories: adventure, Animals, camp, Children, conservation, education, Environment, fish, nature, oceans, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Thorny Sea Star

Thorny Sea Star

We are meeting our last sea star of the week!  This one is best to be observed but not to touch! Ouch- watch out for the crown-of-thorns sea star.

Crown of Thorns

Crown-of-thorn sea star fun facts: 

  • The thorns on this sea star are venomous.
  • These indimidating looking sea stars predate on coral!
  • They have only one predator- giant triton sea snail.
  • As you can see they have more than five arms.
  • They do have tube feet to move them along the reefs.
  • Unfortunately these predators have grown in numbers. Too many of them and that can mean trouble for a reef. They can destroy large areas.
  • Scientists and conservationists now will actively remove them when there is population boom.

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We love sea stars of all kinds, but this one might have gone to the dark side. Keeping a balance in habitats is crucial for all the animals that live there.

Categories: adventure, Animals, camp, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, oceans, sea stars, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Craft Time- Sea Star Bean Bags

 

SEA STAR BEAN BAG

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We are in the craft cabin here at Camp E&E by the Sea and our dear friend Crafty Crab is going to help us with craft time! Today we’re making sea star bean bags for our sea star week! Woot! Woot!

 

MATERIALS:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Sea Star Pattern
  • Scissors
  • Felt (any color)
  • Hot glue gun (used by an adult)
  • Flax seed or stuffing
  • Funnel
  • Sharpie
  • Pom poms or googly eyes

Directions:

1)   Cut out pattern.

2)   Cut out two sea stars on felt.

3)   Hot glue the two pieces together, leaving a small opening.

4)   Put the flax seed in the sea star. If you don’t have a funnel, you can easily make one with paper, by rolling it in a cone shape. If you don’t have flax seed or stuffing or small dry beans will work too.

5)   Make sure you don’t overstuff it. Then glue the opening shut.

6)   Glue on the eyes and draw on the mouth.

 

You’re done! Toss your sea star, use him as a paper weight, or just give him a hug!

 

 

 

 

Categories: adventure, Animals, camp, Children, conservation, crafts, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Bring Your Basket- Star!

Bring Your Basket – Star!

We are so excited to see everyone here! It’s Sea Star week here at camp! You may know these amazing echinoderms as starfish, but scientists are now using sea star as these animals are not fish! We bet you’d like to know what an echinoderm is though– it’s an animal that has radial symmetry (arms radiating from a central body) and a hard covering. Other echinoderms include sea urchins, sea cucumbers and sand dollars.

Today, we are meeting one of the craziest enchinoderms around the basket star. Woohoo!

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Basket Star Fun Facts: 

  • Basket stars belong to the brittle star family.
  • Most Basket stars are found in deep waters.
  • They can reach up to 28 inches across. The central disk is around 5 1/2 inches across.
  • They have 5 arms. Those 5 arms then have many many branches.
  • They have calcium carbonate structures called ossicles. These give all those arms flexibility and stability.
  • Some basket stars feed on plankton or small crustaceans.
  • They use spines and hooks to move food up their mouths on the central disk.
  • Basket stars also have tube feet to move them around.

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These amazing creatures have no brain, but they do have a complex nervous system. The oceans house the craziest critters on the planet!

Categories: adventure, Animals, camp, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, oceans, science, sea stars, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Camp E&E by the Sea

Camp E&E by the Sea

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Welcome back to camp everyone! We trust that you had a lovely holiday! We know we did! We have set up Camp E&E by the sea for the month of July and in to August! The cabins are ready and this year they are spiffy! We will also have some great tents for those that want to sleep by the ocean and hear the waves at night.

We will be meeting the animals that call the shore and ocean home! We have set up the craft cabin and here at the shore it’s run by Carl the Crafty Crab! We’ll also be enjoy a whole we dedicated to our cartilaginous friends- sharks and rays!

So back up your trunks (the box not the elephant nose) and get your cabin assisngment and let’s get ready to enjoy all the Camp E&E by the Sea brings us!

Dont’ forget your water shoes, surfboards, stand up boards, extra sunsuncreen, bug repellant (the gnats can be terrible), a flashlight with a red lens (must not disturb sea turtles) and your beach towels!

 

We will see you on Monday for Sea Star Week!

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Categories: adventure, Animals, camp, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, oceans, science, sea stars, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Another Ocean Giant

Another Ocean Giant

We met another giant of the ocean on our snorkeling trip- the Giant Manta Ray! These graceful creatures are so fun to watch “fly” through the water!  They are truly magical.

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Date: 5/24

Location: Raja Ampat Islands

Giant Manta Ray Fun Facts:

  • Giant Manta Rays are the largest member of the ray family.
  • They are filter feeders and use their front lobes to push food in their mouths. Recent discoveries have shown that they also eat larger deep sea fish!
  • Scientists guess that they can live up to 50 years.
  • Mantas get their name for the Spanish word that means blanket.

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  • Manta rays are covered in a protective mucus coating.
  • Manta rays do not have the venomous barb.
  • It is thought they have been around 5 million years.

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giant manta

Our time here in these amazing islands is done and we are bummed. There is so much more to see and do! We head back to the University and get ready for camp to start in June! We will definitely be back!

 

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, fish, nature, oceans, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

One Big Mollusk!

One Big Mollusk!

While snorkeling we came upon one big animal- the giant clam! And they are a sight to see! We had to share this amazing creature with you!

giant clam

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Date: 5/23

Location: Raja Ampat Islands

Giant Clam Fun Facts:

  • Giant clams live their whole lives in one spot on the reef. It’s hard to move 500 lbs of body.
  • They share their bodies with algae. They feed off the sugar and proteins the algae give off.

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  • Each clam has a unique color pattern.
  • Giant clams have a siphon to pull in water in plankton.
  • They can not close their shell completely.
  • Giant clams can live up to 100 years!

 

 

We love these giant mollusks! Do you remember the largest land arthropod? We met them not to long ago! Mollusks are so amazing!

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, nature, oceans, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Barracuda!

Barracuda!

We had a blast snorkeling the next day after our night drive. We saw one of the coolest fish in all of the oceans- the barracuda! They even have their own song! We bet you don’t much about these long predators. Well it’s time to change that!

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Date: 5/22

Location: Raja Ampat Islands

Barracuda Fun Facts:

  • Barracuda have underbites- hehehe!
  • They have large powerful jaws.

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  • They are known to hunt in groups and gather a school of fish in a area to guard them when they are hungry.
  • Barracuda have a reputation for being aggressive to divers, but that reputation in unwarranted.
  • It is not a good idea to go spear fishing around barracuda though, as they make away with your meal.
  • They have few natural predators.

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barracuda

 

 

 

 

 

It is always fun to spot some barracuda! We like to wave and swim the in the other direction. They may not be aggressive, but those teeth don’t say let’s be friends.

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, Environment, fish, nature, oceans, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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