Tuesday, May 11, 2010


In class we have been working on final projects and in between we have been discussing reptiles!

There are four types of reptiles found in saltwater, but they aren't that common. Marine Iguanas are the only marine lizard and are only found on the Galapagos Islands. They dive into the cold seas to feast on algae and as a result have to spend a lot of time basking on rocks to warm back up. They expel salt through their nostrils via salty snot rockets.

Sea Snakes are found in the Indo-Pacific and are venomous, but not aggressive - meaning they can kill you, but aren't likely to attack you. They have really big lungs to hold their breath for a long time and special nose flaps to keep the water out.

Saltwater crocodiles can be found in the Florida Keys, but are more common in Australia. These menacing reptiles are especially scary because they are found on beaches where people want to swim.

The most common and well known saltwater reptile are sea turtles. There are seven species of sea turtle and they are all endangered. Sea turtles differ from land turtles because they have flippers instead of clawed toes and they cannot go into their shells to hide. Also sea turtles rarely come on land - males never do - and females do only to lay eggs.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Shark Conservation

Today we discussed conservation of sharks. Millions of sharks are killed each year by humans. Some are caught by sport fisherman, some are harvested for oils, meats, and other things; many of them are being harvested for their fins. Finning wastes 95% of an animal, and the sharks are often tossed back in the ocean alive after being finned to die a slow painful death. For more information, click here.

The fins are harvested for shark fin soup. Shark fin soup is considered a delicacy in some countries and can sell for upwards of a hundred dollars a bowl.

The next thing we talked about was shark attacks. Most shark attacks are actually provoked by humans. Other shark attacks like bump-and-bites and hit-and-runs are the shark investigating a human to see if it is something good to eat. Once the shark tries it, it finds it doesn't like humans, it will swim away. Unfortunately for us humans, we are not so tough and kind of squishy and shark attacks damage us.

Computer Lab Etiquette

You are in the computer lab to do work for this class. If you are not doing work, then we will have problems.

Do not pack up early. Work until the bell or until MsJ says.

SAVE OFTEN. And if you save to a key, also save it to your number. If you lose it, you will have to do it again.

If MsJ asks for your attention, stop what you are doing and listen to what she has to say.

You may watch videos about your organism through reliable websites.

You may listen to music through the computer if you have your own headphones. Rule1 MsJ cannot hear it. You get one warning. Rule2 Turn it on and listen – no million clicks and constant changing. Take both ear phones out when MsJ is talking.