Showing posts tagged as "Conservation"
It’s a sea otter celebration! Thanks to you, the California State Sea Otter Fund met its target this year, and will be on tax forms again in 2015. Kudos for checking the box in support of sea otter research on your California State tax form!
Hop on down! The red-legged frog just became California’s official state amphibian—and you can see one at the Aquarium. This local leaper was even featured in Mark Twain’s famous story, “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County.”
Learn more about this threatened species
High school senior Graham Foster wants a future in science when he graduates. He took a big step toward that goal when he joined 75 other students from Pajaro Valley High School, Aptos High School and Watsonville High School for the Aquarium’s Watsonville Area Teens Conserving Habitats (WATCH) program.
The award-winning education program begins with a two-week outdoor summer camp and continues through the school year. Boogie boarding, exploring riparian habitats and creating sand sculptures, combined with visits to organic farms and waste-water treatment plants immerse the teens in diverse habitats and introduce them to people who are making a difference in their community.
Alongside educators and local ecologists, the students learn scientific methods to evaluate the health of local wetland habitats. WATCH students gain a better understanding of ocean systems, and their commitment to ocean conservation issues grows stronger because of it. They also become more personally connected to the ocean, committed to conservation and confident in their ability to make informed, environmentally sound choices.
WATCH students continue their summer camp experience in the classroom the following year where they pursue a larger environmental project that involves community awareness and conservation. Several teens previously enrolled in WATCH programs have earned regional and national recognition for their conservation initiatives.
“The impact these high school students have on their community and surrounding environment is very impressive,” says Rita Bell, director of the Aquarium’s education programs. “Their enthusiasm for the environment, for learning and for one another, is infectious!”
Interested? Learn more about our education programs!
Shark supporter? We’re proud to be one of the official sponsors of shark fin legislation—a movement that has spread to 12 states and territories, and around the world. Now THAT’S a reason to celebrate #SharkWeek!
Help sharks by using our Seafood Watch guides
(Photo: Michael Burns)
Spellbound by sharks? It’s #SharkWeek—and we’ll be sharing stories about these majestic, mysterious animals. We have a dozen species of sharks, rays and skates—important ambassadors for ocean conservation. Which is your favorite?
Check out our Animal Guide
Fancy yourself a fast swimmer? Bluefin tuna speed across the Pacific Ocean in three weeks! But there’s one thing they can’t out-swim: overfishing.
Learn how we’re studying and helping save these athletic animals
It’s Get into Your Sanctuary Day! We hope you get a chance to visit the amazing Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary and celebrate healthy oceans. Established in ‘92, it’s home to an amazing variety of whales, dolphins and other sea life. We’re so lucky to have it!
Have you gotten “into” the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary? Here’s just one more reason: celebrate Get Into Your Sanctuary Day this Saturday, August 2! Why not visit the beach, go whale watching, or (blush) visit the Aquarium?
Get inspired to #VisitSanctuaries
Think you travel a lot? The diminutive red knot probably has you beat, traveling from the Arctic Circle to Tierra del Fuego—a distance of 9,300 miles each way—each year. And it does it all under its own steam.
We just added two of these long distance flyers to our Aviary exhibit. You can also view them on our live web cam.
While red knots could put most business travelers to shame, ours have been forced to stick closer to home, due to permanent wing injuries. The pair (a male and female) flew here—in a plane—from the Florida Aquarium, which has hosted them for more than a decade.
Reading up on Red Knots
Red knots (Calidris canutus) are one of the larger sandpipers, and can live to a ripe age. Scientists recently discovered a 21-year-old.
The birds, which grow to 10 inches, can occasionally be seen in local estuaries such as Elkhorn Slough. But these sightings are rare. These mileage champs breed in some of the coldest places in the world, and winter in some of the hottest. While they travel vast distances, red knots depend on certain stops along the way to fuel up, such as in Hudson Bay and Brazil. This can create challenges for the birds if food sources—particularly horseshoe crab eggs—are in short supply due to overharvesting.
“We’re really excited to have them,” says aviculturist Eric Miller. “Though they’re not technically endangered, red knots in some parts of the world are declining, and this is a great chance for people to see them.”
Girls rock science! In June, a group of bright middle school girls, mostly from Watsonville and Salinas, spent an afternoon untying themselves from a human knot and learning secret handshakes as part of a team building exercise. Later, the girls created their own blogs to document their experiences during a week-long summer camp.
The girls are participants in the Aquarium’s Young Women in Science program, which seeks to inspire interest in science and conservation among young women by introducing them to the marine life in and around Monterey Bay. The camp is presented in both English and Spanish, creating an inclusive setting for the girls to learn how they can help save the world’s oceans.
The program is part of a long-term effort by the Aquarium to help young women aspire to careers in the sciences and math, and fight the notion that there’s no place for them in those fields. As part of this girl power groove, participants also get to meet women currently working in the sciences.