Your Learning Connection | Vol. 17
Marine Mammals in the Gulf of Maine
There are a lot of different species of marine mammals that migrate through or call the Gulf of Maine home, namely whales, dolphins, porpoises and seals! The Gulf of Maine is a special place, with nice cold water, unique underwater mountains and geologic features, and strong currents. This means we have a rich, productive fishery and lots of great food for the whales and seals.
You can learn more about the different cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises) that live here on Blue Ocean Society’s webpage, and then try out our Baleen Whale ID activity to practice your identification skills. If seals are more your thing, first check out our Seal on the Beach Info Sheet to learn more about the SSC Marine Mammal Rescue team and how they respond to stranded seals. You can test your seal expertise with our Marine Mammal Match Seal Activity Sheet.
Have fun and be sure to share your new knowledge and tips for keeping these spectacular marine mammals safe and healthy!
Conservation Design Challenge
Our coastal and ocean environment is a shared space. The health of these systems is tied to our own human health. Humans have a responsibility to preserve and protect the environment, for our own health and the health of the animals that live there. The ocean is like the planet’s heart, pumping heat and moisture, regulating climate, oxygen and temperature. Learn more about how this works from this NASA video, and brainstorm some creative ways to keep our ocean systems healthy below! For years, lobstermen have worked to protect the lobster fishery by regulating the number and type (size, egg bearing females) of lobsters they keep in order to ensure a healthy and productive population. As we learn more about Right Whales and their feeding and swimming behaviors, some lobster fishers are thinking creatively about how to design a trap without ropes, to help reduce the risk of entanglement! Check out this Conservation Design Challenge and send us your design ideas!
To learn more about the American Lobster, download our American Lobster Fact Sheets and check out one of our favorite lobsters at Seacoast Science Center in the Lobster Video below. You can dive even deeper with these Fun Facts about our favorite crustaceans from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.
Go on an Owl Prowl!
“Whooo Cooks for You, Whooo Cooks for You All!” Turn the volume way up for the beginning of this Nature Time Activity video below, presented by SSC Naturalist Emily. She went out to chat with some barred owls recently and got inspired to send you off an on owl prowl! Learn the calls of some NH native owls, scratch the surface of owl ecology, and then go out and prowl!
Learn more about exploring nature New England from Mary Holland’s Naturally Curious Blog.
Has the ice and snow melted away, leaving things looking a bit drab? We’ve got a fun Ice Ornaments Activity that will add some sparkle and beauty and maybe even entice the neighborhood birds to drop by for a visit. It’s time to get outside to gather some berries, seeds, greens and other natural decorations and get creative! Be sure to check with an adult before exploring and enjoy your wintry adventure.