Sunday, July 21, 2019

Something Fishy About That Fish

Hello fish friends!

This week was a great week to catch fish! And, as I'm sure many of you know, it was quite a hot week outside. Boy, did our frozen squid (which we use as bait) get stinky from the sweltering hot sun!

Not a fan of the fish he caught...
On Tuesday, it was a special day for our friends at Courageous Sailing because we had our first off-land fishing trip with Captain Charlie aboard the Belle! It was a beautiful day on the water. We started off by checking Charlie's lobster traps, and turns out we caught a lobster, some huge spider crabs, and even a rock crab. This was possibly the first time I've seen a rock crab caught in the Harbor, so I was extremely excited when we pulled it up. On the trip, the kids were excited to be fishing. We caught just under a dozen fish, but unfortunately none of them were keepers. We caught a handful of bass, some chogee, a skate, and some other small fish that I was unable to identify. One young boy, who started the day unenthusiastic about fishing, caught FOUR fish. Needless to say, he was VERY happy with himself by the time we returned to the mainland.

big fish!
Back at Piers Park, every day we caught about 2-5 small cunner in our crab trap! The kids were extremely excited. If you ask me, I have a slight suspicion that the fish we caught each day were the same fish from the day before... smart little guys eating our bait! OR not so smart little fish for getting caught every day... On Thursday, we got a new type of small fish in our touch tank. It was so small and cute, and I excitedly picked it up to take a picture of it. However, when asking someone else who is more familiar with fish species, we were told that it was a toad fish--a type of fish that can sometimes be venomous! Oops! Luckily, both Jasmine and I (who had touched the fish), seemed to be fine. Now we know what to touch and what not to touch!

On both Wednesday and Friday, we taught our biweekly lessons to the kids at Piers. This Wednesday, I asked two of our JPAs to teach a lesson, so Colin and Ambri did a 45 minute lesson on the tides. They went over why we have tides (high and low) and what types of animals are affected by the intertidal zone. Ambri even made up a game about crabs in a crab trap, which the kids absolutely loved! I was very impressed by their creativity and teaching, so kudos to both of them for their planning and hard work!

Swedish fish for overfishing lesson!
On Friday, I led a lesson that is often used in various environmental science classes. I had never done it before, but, with the help of Colin, who was at Piers last year, led the lesson on overfishing. We used Swedish fish and coffee stirrers to be our fishing rods, and played a game that compared fishing an unlimited amount of fish to fishing a controlled amount of fish. The kids were really into the activity--quite possibly because we told them they could eat the Swedish fish after they participated... We went over concepts of overfishing, bycatch, and trawling, which, for a bunch of 6-8 year olds, is very hard to understand! However, the kids were very quick to pick up everything, and I left feeling satisfied and happy with their curiosity and knowledge.

Can't wait to CATCH you later!


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