Friday, March 24, 2017

Budding Biologist

Mr. Musselman of the Science Center was in to share his superfish presentation today.  Our marine biologist students learned about vertebrates and invertebrates, covering many of the creatures we expect to see when we visit the aquarium next week!

The first creature comes from an unexpected animal family for the aquarium, the bird family!  We learned about penguins.  They have beaks and feathers and can be many sizes.

Then we explored invertebrates, particularly the mollusks.  We noted their exoskeletons and discovered other commonalities.  We learned that each of the ones we talked about are filter feeders.  The oyster lives in the tide pools and eat algae.  The clams live in the sand of the beach and use their strong muscle (like a tongue) to burrow in the sand for safety from the birds.  We also witnessed scallops and mussels, Mr. Musselman's favorite!



We also learned about sea stars and the strong suction they have to open the bi-valve animals when they eat.  The lobsters have very large strong claws to help them eat!



Students impressed Mr. Musselman as they directed him as he assembled is superfish model  We knew the many parts of the fish!

Finally we observed a very smart creature, the octopus!  Like the sea star he uses very strong suction cups that are along its tentacles.  The octopus can outsmart it's prey by changing its colors to lure prey towards it or scare away a predator.  Finally, they may squirt their ink out to scare away or or confuse other creatures.  The New England Aquarium octopus is no clever, he has even been caught trying to escape, or grab a snack in the neighboring tank!






























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