What a fabulous weekend students from Sevilla had when they visited LES for the Marine Science Programme organised by Mr Hollingworth over the long weekend. They followed a full and exciting timetable which included up close and personal encounters with sea lions, sailing to conduct research, classroom work and practical experiments and much much more.
Below is a summary of their absolutely amazing and educational trip. LES looks forward to conducting more programmes such as this one in the future! Thank you to Mr Hollingworth as always for his hard work and dedication to teaching students such fascinating things about the sea!
Pickup from Airport
Arrived at school Lesson 3, Tour and Lunch.
Joined Year 13 Marine Science Double Lesson and did a practical extracting the photosynthetic pigments from different families of Marine Algae (Green, Brown and Red) plus seagrass leaves (plant not algae). Compared Chlorophyll present in all sample to some algae that have accessory pigments in order to absorb additional colors of light. Made hypothesis about where some of these algae may be found and how the accessory pigments could offer a competitive advantage.
Then to boarding house, orientation, settling in and dinner. Then documentary on James Camerons dive to the bottom of the Marianas Trench.
They spent the morning on a sailing yacht around Javea Bay doing a number of experiments. Listening to underwater noise from hydrophones and identifying some of the natural noises, also recording the sounds of boat traffic – noise pollution. Using surface buoys to track surface currents, measuring intensity and direction. Trawling a plankton net horizontally at shallow depth to gather shallow water plankton, then vertically to gather deeper water plankton and compare. Use of a Secchi Disk to measure light penetration. Sampling water at different depths in the water column to measure temperature and salinity, locating thermocline / temperature gradients.
In the afternoon they completed a fish dissection to look at the physiology of fish related to respiratory system, osmoregulation, digestive system and parasites. Investigation into the isotonic point of plant cells and the requirements for osmoregulation in salt or fresh water fish.
Trip to Moraig River to look at the tectonic faultlines and the formation of the coastline. Collection of water samples at depth and surface to locate the halocline / salinity gradient in the estuary. Survey of the rocky shore using transects, quadrats and comparing the community changes at different heights on the sea shore plus sheltered or exposed sites. Timed searches for specific species.
In the afternoon, investigations into diffusion and the need for specialized respiratory surfaces for larger organisms. Also trailing different body forms and effect on diffusion into the body. Viewing of live plankton under light microscopes and identification. Creating of thermoclines and haloclines in an aquarium.
In the morning a visit to Mundomar to meet the sealions and see how they are cared for and trained.
Then off to train station for return trip home.
For photos click on the photo below: