NCS marine biology joined Chesapeake Experience for their annual field study of marine life and the waterway. During the trip, discussions were led by Jill Bieri, Marine Biologist and Director of Chesapeake Experience, an organization dedicated to improving stewardship of the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
“Field studies, like this one, really bring class lessons to life as students apply what they have learned,” says Loli Marshall, upper school science teacher. “These skills transfer to our oyster and wetland grasses restoration projects that NCS marine biology students conduct as a contribution to clean the Bay.”
To prepare for the outdoor experience, the class completed several online assignments that introduced them to nautical terms used in the field and equipment used to study marine life and water quality.Once at the beach, the students put that knowledge into action taking collecting samples and data that benchmark the health of the Bay.
Hallsey Brandt may have been the star of the day for capturing a molting crab, which students watched over the course of the trip slip out of its shell and become a soft shell crab. Other notable catches, which were observed and released, included fiddler crabs, flounder and half-billed fish. Several students were responsible for collecting and sorting land and marine based trash – an important part of studying habitats and conservation.
Students also documented the animals seen while heading towards the beach area and returning to the docks. Great blue Herons, White Ibis, Osprey, Laughing Gulls, Cormorants and Terrapins were just a few of the spotted animals.
Special thanks to NCS alum and son of Mrs. Marshall, Nick Anderson-Marshall, class ’07, who helped chaperone the trip.