We've only just dipped our toes into the Save the Harbor summer this past week, and I cannot wait to dive in completely for the rest of the summer! On Monday I joined the Boston Children's Museum teaching "Fishing 101" on the harbor dock. Hundreds of children, adults, tourists, and even just people on their lunch breaks stopped by to enjoy our fishing activities, crab trap, and touch tank. On Tuesday and Wednesday, I worked with All-Access Boston Harbor, with my official AABH squad for the summer! We spent our days on Spectacle Island enjoying the beautiful weather, refreshing swims, and providing fishing, crabbing, and organized sports to all of the eager passengers each day. Working, fishing, and playing on the harbor is a surreal experience in itself, but I couldn't be happier with my fellow Save the Harbor employees. Every LHE and JPA brings a sense of adventure, a unique set of knowledge and experiences, and an appetite to share our Save the Harbor expertise and learn more along the way!
|Aleena, Qalid, and Will on the Spectacle Island dock! Just a few from our AABH squad.
|Roy with our Striper!
|Our crab race!
And now to introduce the guest of honor in my blog. The peanut butter to our jelly. The one's we couldn't do it without! The thing that makes Save the Harbor tick: the marine life!!! From our crab races to our battle reeling in a Striper, the marine animals we catch are crucial to the educational moments at the museum or on Spectacle Island. If there's one thing that I've learned as an Environmental Studies major it's that experiential learning, actually getting your hands dirty and enjoying a tangible, real-life moment with something has a lasting impact on a learner. Having meaningful interactions with the marine life in the harbor is something extraordinary.
While we have caught over one-hundred Green Crabs in just one week of our summer, one species that stands out to me is the Spider Crab crustacean. These crabs stand out amongst the crabs we typically catch, because of their slimy shells, noticeably large size, and beak-shaped grumpy facial features. Their bodies are typically covered in algae, bacteria, typically used for protection from predators. A fun fact is that the size of Spider crabs can range from 1 centimeter to 14 FEET LONG, depending on the different families!!! Spider Crabs are considered scavengers, typically feeding off the flesh of dead organisms in the Northern Pacific, of European and Japanese coasts, and, of course Boston Harbor! In terms of conservation, Spider Crabs are very tolerant of polluted waters and eutrophic environments; so don't be fooled! These spiders are fighters to tough waters, despite their slow movements.
Another species we caught was the Striped Bass, otherwise known as a Striper! Stripers are adaptable fish found in the rocky bottoms of freshwater lakes and open sea waters. They're ravenous creatures, feeding on many types of prey fish including anchovy, alewife, and croakers, and can be found weighing up to 50 pounds! The smart fishies migrate north for the warm weather, and love to travel south for the tough New England winters. I think we should learn something from them, that's for sure! We're looking forward to meeting some more of the harbor's marine life as the summer continues.
The first week has come to a close, and I could not be more excited to continue! After spending my July 4th in New Jersey, I'm looking forward to our first full week of Save the Harbor adventures! Check out our Instagram @savetheharbor for more frequent updates.
Aka Cap'n Save the Bae