Archive for the ‘Sea Turtle Camp News’ Category

Ocean Facts

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

molaWhat’s the heaviest living bony fish in the ocean?

Ocean sunfish or Mola mola, have an average weight of 2,200 lb, but can reach up to 5,100 pounds. The sunfish has and average length of 5.9 ft and a fin-to-fin length of 8.2 ft, but specimens up to 11 ft in length and 14 ft from fin-to fin are not uncommon.

 

oarWhat’s the longest living bony fish in the ocean?

Giant oarfish are the longest bony fish alive; growing to up to 36 ft in length, their snake like body is thought to be responsible for the many mythical sightings of sea serpents recorded in history.

 

Whale-Shark-HomepageWhat is the largest living fish?

Whale Sharks are slow-moving filter feeding shark, the lack the furious jaws of their cousins, and are noted for being docile creatures. The can grow up to 46 feet in length and weigh upward of 66,000 pounds!

 

sailWhat is the fastest living fish?

Sailfish can reach speeds of 68 miles per hour! They are members of the billfish family, and can grow up to 10 feet in length and weigh up to 220 pounds! The leatherback differs from its hardshelled cousins ats its body is covered with a leathery like skinn

 

leatherbackWhat is the largest living sea turtle?

Leatherbacks are the largest of all living turtles and are the fourth-heaviest modern reptile behind crocodilians. Adults average 6.0–7.2 ft in total length, and 550 to 1,540 lb in weight.

 

blueWhat is the largest marine animal?

Blue whales are not only the largest marine animal, but the largest animals ever known to have lived on Earth. These animals can reach 100 feet long and upwards of 200 tons in weight. Their tongues alone can weigh as much as an elephant. They are also the loudest with a call that reached 188 decibels.

 

natWhat is the oldest marine animal?

We may never be able to pinpoint this but the Nautilus is thought to be 500 million years old, Jellies 650 million years, and sponges are estimated at 750 million years old!

 

2013-07-04-boxangel1What is the most venomous marine animal?

Box Jellies have caused at least 5,567 recorded deaths since 1954. Their venom is among the most deadly in the world. Its toxins attack the heart, nervous system, and skin cells. You have virtually no chance to survive the venomous sting, unless treated immediately

Seabirds

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

albarossMarine birds have generally evolved to survive and feed near the sea. Though the name suggests a life at sea many species spend a good portion of their life hundreds if not thousands of miles inland. Nesting grounds can be far from the coast with birds traveling to seek food.

blue-footed-booby-profileThere is no generalization that encompasses all types of sea dependent birds, but in general seabirds expel a large amount of energy on raising their young, of which they have fewer than most terrestrial birds. Due to the excess amount of care required to insure the survival of their offspring both parents typically participate in caring for the young. Parental pairs can be monogamous for a season or a lifetime depending on the species.

Another characteristic that often set seabirds apart is the vast migration a few species undertake between feeding, breeding, and nesting grounds – some seabird are even capable of circumnavigating the globe!

Dpenguinsepending on a species individual feeding habits most have developed adaptations which equip them for a life at sea. Diving birds typical have shorter wings and denser feathers -while the heavy migrators, such as the albatross, depend on gliding to conserve energy during flight. Webbed feet and Waterproof plumage are very common as with most aquatic birds they help in propulsion and body heat retention both above and below the water. Slat glands are exhibited in most species to handle the excess salt consumer when eating and drinking at sea.

The Properties of Seawater

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

water molecule 2Water is the most abundant compound on Earth’s surface. In nature, water exists in liquid, solid, and gaseous states. The ocean covers 72% of the earth’s surface and of all the water on earth 97% is salt water while only 3% is fresh – and of that 3%, 70% is locked in ice caps.

Seawater is more dense then freshwater, it is composed of 96.5% water and 3.5% dissolved compounds. The ocean is historically alkaline with a pH between 7.5 to 8.4 and an average salinity between 3.1% and 3.8%.  Ocean salinity is not actually uniform because the salt in ocean water comes from the weathering of earth’s land surface over time.

Water exhibits cohesion, adhesion, and surface tension. Cohesion is the ability of molecules to stick to themselves. In the case of water this is most easily demonstrated in the water droplet. Strong hydrogen bonds are created between separate molecules as the negatively charged oxygen atoms of one water molecule are attracted to the positively charged hydrogen atoms on another. Simply put – they stick together!

stock-footage-water-drops-on-pine-tree-needlesAdhesion functions in a similar fashion to cohesion and it is also the result of intermolecular forces. The main difference being that it refers to the ability of dissimilar particles or surfaces to cling to one another. An example of this is dew drops clinging to the needles of a pine tree.

WaterstriderEnWikiThe cohesive forces among liquid molecules are responsible for the occurrence of surface tension. Surface tension results from the greater attraction of water molecules to each other (due to cohesion) than to the molecules in the air (due to adhesion). The net effect is an inward force at its surface that causes water to behave as if its surface were covered with a stretched elastic membrane. Which is why a water strider, which is denser then water, is still able to run along the waters surface!

The Plants of the Sea

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Algae are a diverse group of organisms encompassing a vast and varied group of plants that can be found on all reaches of the globe.

kelp

In the natural environment algae serves several important functions. Most importantly they are primary producers, and serve as the base for almost all aquatic food chains. They are a valuable food source for many animals, provide shelter, and contribute to the recycling of nutrients in aquatic systems. They also help contribute to over 50 percent of the oxygen we breathe on this planet.

The brown, red, and green groups are probably the most easily identified.

Brown algae or Phaeophyta are the largest type of algae. Brown alga is typically found in temperate or arctic waters and they usually have root-like structures called holdfasts to secure or anchor them to hard surfaces. Kelp is probably the most well known type of brown algae, as they form enormous and ancient underground forest.

redRed algae or Rhodophyta include more than 6,000 species alone. Red algae can be brilliant in color and can survive at much greater depths then other similar types of green and brown algae because it absorbs blue light. Red coralline algae are very important in the formation for coral reefs.

sealettuceGreen algae or Chlorophyta can be found in both marine and freshwater habitats, some even thrive in moist soils. Green algae’s can be unicellular, colonial or multicellular. These types of algae have green chloroplasts containing chlorophylls which give them there coloration. The first terrestrial plants evolved from there freshwater cousins over 500 million years ago!

2014 Camper Reviews

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

141Sea Turtle Camp was AMAZING! It was an awesome experience for everyone including me. The instructors were so nice, kind, fun to be around and punny. I learned so much about marine life found in North Carolina. Working with the sea turtles at the hospital opened up my eyes that I need to start helping the ocean even more so that these beautiful creatures can have a better life. This camp has really inspired me, and got me out of my comfort zone. I made lots of new friends and grew as a person. I also felt more independent and now I know that dish soap doesn’t go in the dishwasher. I had an amazing time with the campers and sea turtles. It was awesome! – Sydney M. Wyoming

Sea Turtle Camp was an unforgettable experience!! I’ve had so much fun this week and I’ve made friendships that will last a lifetime. Even though my time here was short, that’s okay because some infinities are bigger than other infinities (tfios)! I will always remember my time here. If I was surfing in the waves, or finding Dane (the sea turtles) spot he likes to be brushed, everything about camp was amazing! The counselors taught in a very interactive way, and it was really cool because while they were teaching you, you were also teaching them. We also had amazing food! And I thought that the campers would be crabby (ahh, ahh) but they weren’t, they were all super nice! And the counselors were awesome!!!! They were very nice and I liked the puns we created! I hope I can come back again!” – Desirae D, Florida

IMG_5699Sea Turtle Camp was an amazing and wonderful experience. My favorite part was going to the sea turtle hospital. My favorite turtles were Scottie, Park, Wiggles, and October. I loved getting a chance to see what goes on with the turtles. I also really enjoyed the surf lessons. I have never surfed before and I ended up really liking it. All of the counselors were really nice. They were like campers but older. All of my cabin buddies were amazing. I made tons of friends.  I liked seeing the turtle lay eggs at night!The camp was so much fun. – Kelcey H, Ohio

Sea Turtle Camp was “inseine”! Leatherbacks group was the best and I had a great time. I learned a lot during activities but also had buckets of fun.  I formed great bonds with everyone in my cabin. Once of my favorite things we did was work at the sea turtle hospital. Seeing what could happen to the turtles if we didn’t be careful was very powerful. I also really enjoyed the fouling docks and learning about the organisms present. – Alex S, Maryland

IMG_1628Sea Turtle camp was amazing! I honestly had such an awesome time. The activities were a perfect balance of active and relaxing and I was never bored. I had such a great time helping at the sea turtle hospital! I feel like I learned so much, and it was really only 6 days. Camp felt like a month – we did so much and I feel like I got to know everyone in our group. Leatherbacks are the best. I could not have asked for a better group. The instructors were really nice and funny! All in all, I had such a great time! I’m so glad I got to come – best camp ever. – Sarah S, Georgia

Sea turtle camp was a really great experience.  From the time I got off the air plane all of the counselors and campers were great.  When I met my roommates we immediately became friends.  On the way to activities our constant naptime was hilarious!  Seine netting, surfing, paddleboarding, and the aquarium were a lot of fun. All of the other campers and counselors made these experiences a hundred percent better.  Helping with the sea turtle hospital really reinforced what I would like to eventually do with my life.  It took me only a few minutes for me to get comfortable with all the counselors. I am really going to miss everyone. – Diana N, Florida

DSC_3717Sea turtle camp was an amazing time!  I had so much fun doing the activities with the people and the counselors were awesome!  The other kids were fun to hang out with and I had so much fun with them as well. I especially liked the surfing and the sea turtle hospital.  I loved bathing the turtles and taking care of them.  One thing that surprised me was that I loved doing the outreach.  Before I did not enjoy public speaking that much, but after the event I kept wanting to do it!  I definitely want to do this again especially in Hawaii or Costa Rica!  There will never be another group as awesome as the leatherbacks!  I also can’t believe that we saw two turtle nests!  It was so cool! I will never forget this experience.” – Nina G, Marylan

 

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