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D i s co l a t v as Booklet Teachers Guide

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Additional copies of the Coastal Discovery booklets can be downloaded from the Cradle Coast NRM website: www.cradlecoastnrm.com This project is supported by Cradle Coast Natural Resource Management (NRM), through funding from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country. Cradle Coast NRM works with the North West and Western Tasmanian communities to improve our natural resources and ensure a healthy future for the region.

Copyright Š Cradle Coast Authority 2010 No part of this publication may be reproduced without the express prior permission of the publisher. Published by: Cradle Coast Authority PO Box 338 Burnie TAS 7320 Ph: 03 6431 6285 nrm@cradlecoast.com Booklet design and illustrations by Jen Evans Design and Consulting, Ulverstone, Tasmania


Introduction

These notes provide background material for teachers who are taking their class to the beach to work from the Coastal Discovery booklets. The aim of the booklets is to encourage students to learn more about their local coastal and marine environments and the animals and plants found there. By making discoveries for themselves, it is hoped that students will appreciate the need to care for the coast and perhaps become future ambassadors for coastal conservation. The booklets contain ideas and activities adapted from a variety of resources. A list of references can be found at the end of these notes, but there are many others available. The activities in the booklets can be linked to the Tasmanian Department of Education curriculum areas of Science, English, the Arts and Society and History. Many of the activities are suitable for different age levels, including adults.

Contents Resources Safety at the Beach Focus Areas Beach Activities Booklet for Lower Primary Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary Extra Activities Books and Websites

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Resources

Teachers Resource Pack This pack can be downloaded from www.cradlecoastnrm.com The pack contains: • Teacher Booklet • Lower Primary Booklet (Prep to Grade 2) • Middle to Upper Primary Booklet (Grades 3 to 6) • Weed Identification Guide • Native Plant Identification Guide • Shell Identification Guide • Crab Identification Guide • Seaweed Identification Guide • Seastar Identification Guide • Rockpool Life Identification Guide • Shorebirds of North West Tasmania Pocket ID Booklet • Colour Chart • Footprints Identification Guide Extra information can be obtained from http://www.cradlecoastnrm.com/useful_docs.html

Requirements for teachers • • • • • • • •

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Check tide times Other adults to provide a good ratio of students to adult supervision First aid kit Mobile phone Whistle (or another way of gaining the attention of students) Reference book/s (e.g. Between Tasmanian Tide Lines: A Field Guide) Camera Extra sunscreen, water


Equipment for beach activities • • • • • • • • • • • •

Laminated Identification Guides Magnifiers White flat trays and white plastic spoons Spare pens, pencils, crayons, oil pastels for rubbings, cartridge paper Compass Bucket Plaster of paris, container and stick for mixing Thermometer Rubber gloves, tongs, plastic bags (for collecting rubbish) String, scissors Clipboard for each student Student Coastal Discovery booklets

About the Booklets

There are two different booklets, aimed at two levels: Lower Primary (Prep to Grade 2) and Middle to Upper Primary (Grade 3 and up) which are both linked to the curriculum areas of English, Science, Society and History and The Arts. Each booklet is divided into 4 focus areas: 1. Habitats - Beach Environments 2. Native Plants and Weeds 3. Life in a Rock Pool 4. Marine Debris and Beachcombing.

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Safety at the Beach

The coast is beautiful but can be dangerous. We encourage you and your students to follow the guidelines below. • Wear old sand shoes, a hat and sunscreen and take drinking water. • Stick to formed walking tracks. Avoid trampling plants or walking through areas where penguins and shearwaters burrow. • If you do move rocks to look at marine creatures, put them back carefully in exactly the same place you found them - remind students that it is the home of marine creatures. • We recommend that only teachers handle rock pool creatures and care is taken in handling live creatures. They can be harmed or die if left out in the hot sun or taken out of their special environment. • Watch out for large waves, slippery rocks and sharp objects. • Watch out for and avoid trampling shorebird nests and eggs. Shorebirds nest between the high tide line and the dunes, and breed from September to March. A simple message is: • Walk on the wet sand, stay clear of high tide mark and look out for birds if walking on sand dunes. • Collect any rubbish so the beach is cleaner than you found it (only if safe to do so). • Don’t put your hands in dark crevices of rock pools. • Watch out for the Blue-ringed Octopus. It is normally yellowish-brown but when disturbed its rings become bright blue and orange. It hides in the dark corners of rock pools, and in cans and bottles. Humans, when bitten usually don’t feel the bite but soon notice numbness around the mouth followed quickly by paralysis. Breathing problems and even death can result from respiratory failure. Seek urgent medical help if bitten. Give mouth to mouth resuscitation and continue until medical help arrives.

Blue-ringed Octopus 6


Focus Areas

The booklets have been divided into focus areas. These are: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Habitats-Beach Environments Native Plants and Weeds Life in a Rock Pool Marine Debris and Beachcombing

Focus Area 1 - Habitats - Beach Environments There is more than one habitat on the beach. For example the sand dunes/grassed areas, rock pools, the beach above and below the high water mark and under the sand and the water. These different environments provide food and shelter for a variety of creatures.

Focus Area 2 - Native Plants and Weeds (on sand dunes and dune grassed areas) A native plant is natural to the area and a weed is a plant growing in the wrong place. It is often difficult to tell the difference between native plants and weeds, but weeds can cause problems such as altering habitats or changing the shape of sand dunes.

Focus Area 3 - Life in a Rock Pool Rock pools are one of the wonders of the coast. At low tide a rock pool forms a community of plants and animals and provides an opportunity to observe how the creatures interact with each other and their environment. Remind students not to touch rock pool creatures. Some creatures, such as the Blue-ringed octopus or Cone shell can be dangerous.

Focus Area 4 - Marine Debris and Beachcombing Beachcombing is looking for anything of value or interest on the beach. Natural treasures that can be found are sea urchin shells; cuttlefish bones; fish skeletons and squid eggs. Sometimes what you find is easy to identify and explain, but other things are a mystery. You might find treasures hidden in the seaweed and sand. You may find things that have travelled for thousands of kilometres, or things that have floated up from the depths. Marine and beach debris is unnatural matter in our oceans such as garbage, trash or litter. Some types of marine debris that are a threat to fish, seabirds, turtles, seals, whales, sharks, dolphins and crabs are plastic and plastic pellets, fishing nets (called ghost nets when lost), fishing line, rope, cigarette lighters and butts, styrofoam and six pack rings. Marine creatures can ingest marine debris and/or be entangled by it. Oil spills can also be harmful and fatal to marine life. Driftwood, cans, glass bottles, boat parts and many other types of rubbish in the ocean can also be washed up and pollute our beaches.

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Beach Activities

Students should wear gloves for some of these activities. Walking along the beach discovering interesting objects is one of the delights of going to the beach. The activities in the booklets involve looking at a variety of creatures, including birds that can be found on the beach. Before going to the beach, it is suggested that teachers and accompanying adults spend some time planning how to run the activities. Time will need to be managed for each activity, for an introductory safety briefing, for protocols (e.g. do not pick up sea creatures and replace rocks exactly where found), an explanation of what is expected for each activity, plus time to pack up before moving on to the next activity. The time spent at each activity will vary but could be up to 30 minutes, including a few minutes spent at the start, plus about 5 minutes at the end to pack up and/or clear away. If there are enough adults, the class teacher could rotate between the various activities. The teacher could use a whistle (or another way of signalling) to mark the changeover time of each activity. At the beach students should be divided into smaller sub-groups of 4 - 8 students and will work their way around the various activities. An adult will remain at each activity to greet each group and direct the activity. The adult will give a short explanation of the activity and also point out any dangers or special points of interest. For example, one group works with an adult studying rock pools; a second group works with an adult identifying native plants and weeds, while a third group observes the tides and does some art work or writing and the fourth group classifies and records beach debris or makes a sand sculpture. All children could have their own booklet at the beach fill in or the booklet can be completed back in the classroom. The booklets are a record of the student’s time at the beach and can be taken back to the classroom to complete any unfinished activities. Note: Around low tide is the best time for a class excursion to the beach.

Lower Primary (Prep to Grade 2) uses the following principles: Keep the message simple Focus on investigating and games Activities use as many of the senses as possible Safety message- the coast is beautiful but can be dangerous

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Booklet for Lower Primary

Activities for Habitats - Beach Environments (Exploring at the Beach) Page divided into 4 sections: Rock pools, Beach-wet sand, Beach-dry sand and Sand dunes/ grassed area . Students draw and write in each box.

sand dunes/grassed area

rock pools

Examples of what may be found:

Examples of what may be found:

coastal vegetation birds snakes bandicoots penguins spiders insects

crabs shells seaweed invertebrates anemones sea urchins fish shrimp

beach-dry sand, above high water

worms coral sponges bugs octopus jellyfish barnacles mussels limpets

beach-wet sand, below high water

Examples of what may be found:

Examples of what may be found:

shorebirds/nest sand hoppers invertebrates

shells sea snails worms seaweed sand hoppers invertebrates crabs

Colour Chart. Adult in charge gives out colour charts for children to match up with beach features (e.g. colours of sand, grasses, shells, seaweed, animals found etc).

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Booklet for Lower Primary

Activities for Native Plants and Weeds Assist the children with identifying what they find by using the Native Plant and Weed Identification Guides. The students then draw and write down what they find in their booklets. Page divided into native plants and weeds. Students to do native plants and weed rubbings. Rubbings completed on separate paper to glue in their booklets later. Students to look around for 6 different plants and draw them from smoothest to roughest in their booklets. Examples of native plants:

Examples of weeds:

• • • •

• Sea Spurge (Euphorbia paralias) (pictured below) • Marram Grass (Ammophila arenaria) • Cape Ivy (Delairea odorata) • Mirror Bush (Coprosma repens) • Canary Broom (Genista monspessulana) • English Broom (Cytisus scoparius) • Boneseed (Chrysanthemoides monilifera) • Blackberry (Rubus fruticosus) • Cotoneaster (Cotoneaster species) • African Boxthorn (Lycium ferocissimum) • Agapanthus (Agapanthus praecox ssp.) • Asparagus Fern (Asparagus scandens)

• • • • • • • • • • • •

White correa (Correa alba) Coastal Wattle (Acacia sophorae) Coastal Boobialla (Myoporum insulare) Ice Plant/Bower Spinach (Tetragonia implexicoma) Coastal Saltbush (Rhagodia candolleana) Currant bush (Leucopogon parviflorus) Sagg (Lomandra longifolia) Coastal Tussock Grass (Poa poiformis) Tussock Grass (Poa labillardierei) Pigface (Carpobrotus rossii) Tasmanian Flax Lily (Dianella tasmanica) Knobby Club Sedge (Isolepis nodosa) Swamp Paperbark (Melaleuca ericifolia) Silver Banksia (Banksia marginata) Sheoak (Casurarina species) Blackwood (Acacia melanoxylon)

Note: Remind the children that Sea spurge is a toxic weed and that touching it can irritate their skin and eyes.

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Booklet for Lower Primary

Activities for Life in a Rock Pool Before doing anything, children to sit quietly around the pool, just observing and formulating questions. Q. Are there rainbow colours on the water surface indicating oil? Why is oil bad? A: Oil can impact on marine birds by causing their feathers to lose their waterproof coating, impacting on their ability to swim and search for food. Oil is also toxic for birds if eaten when preening and for other sea creatures if eaten and absorbed. Q. Is the water temperature the same in the rock pool as in the ocean? (use thermometer). Why is temperature important? A: Animals are adapted to tolerate certain water temperatures. Water in rock pools is often warmer than the ocean and therefore creatures within it are usually more tolerant of greater temperature change. Q. Can the students see anything moving? A: Some creatures have amazing camouflage and adaptations so that they can best hunt for prey and avoid being preyed upon. Eg. A Decorator crab covers itself in seaweed for camouflage; and the Sea urchin is covered in many long sharp spines for protection. Rock Pool Identification Guides to be passed around. The students will draw in the blank page with the coastal-themed border the different things they find. Ask students not to remove rock pool creatures. Creatures removed by adults or teachers must be put back in same place as they were found. If there is more than one rock pool, alternate between them. Keep particularly interesting animals aside for each group to look at as they come through. They must be returned to pool where found at end of the beach session.

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Booklet for Lower Primary

Activities for Beachcombing Trash or Treasure: Students to find and draw the types of rubbish and other debris found on beach. Page divided into various types of materials - Plastic and paper, metal and glass, wood and shells, and other. Make a sand sculpture building or marine animal using seaweed and found objects (only safe objects!). Take photographs of the sculptures as each group will clean up after themselves and the next group will start afresh. Students can work in pairs or on their own. Sneaky Sniffer and the Sounds Around Students are asked to find something on the beach that smells Salty ___________________________________________________________________________ Pleasant _______________________________________________________________________ Disgusting ______________________________________________________________________ Describe the sound the sound they hear when they: Put a shell to their ear____________________________________________________________ Squeeze wet sand ______________________________________________________________ Walk on dry sand _______________________________________________________________

Footprints. Students to use Footprint Identification Guide to find footprints in the sand and draw them or make plaster casts of them.

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Extra Activities

Beach Scavenger Hunt Search the beach to find the things below

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

some litter a piece of rope something precious something red something very old a large shell

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

something living something dead a skeleton a colourful rock something shiny something spiky

Short story exercise Write a short story about the most interesting thing you have learned today and why it is important to know.

Colouring in Colour in the picture on the last page.

Sea Creature Exercise Choose a sea creature. It could be a penguin, seal, sea eagle or whale. Pretend you are that creature and write about your life. What do you eat, where do you live, who are your enemies? What are the other dangers to you and how can humans help to make your life better?

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Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Middle to Upper Primary (Grade 3 and up) This book is aimed at a higher level with more questions and more writing. It retains the original format of questions and answers.

Activities for Habitats - Beach Environments There is more than one habitat at the beach, e.g sand dunes, rock pools, the beach below and above high water mark (the lower and upper beach), rock platforms, headlands and the water itself. Q. Student to tick in the box the type of beach they are on. A. Sandy, rocky, estuary (river mouth), headland, sheltered, open Q. Find north using the compass. Then find which way the wind is coming from. A. Students to draw arrow on the compass diagram provided in their booklet. Q. Describe the way the sea looks today. A. Rough, calm, choppy, still, mirror-like. Students to tick the correct one. Q. Is the tide coming in or going out? What object could you look for on the beach to help you get the answer? Describe how you can tell? A. Use a stick or piece of driftwood to demonstrate.

Activities for Native Plants and Weeds Native plants are those that evolved naturally in Tasmania. More specifically, native plants in a particular area are those that were growing naturally in the area before humans introduced plants from other places. A weed is a plant growing in the wrong place. It is a plant that is not native to the local environment, and which invades and out-competes native plants. Weeds often grow quickly and are excellent at surviving and reproducing in environments where the land has been disturbed. Weeds can have a number of negative impacts on the environment, including: • Reducing native plant diversity • Reducing habitat for native animals • Changing the structure of plant communities • Changing the way fire affects landscapes • Changing the shape and ecology of waterways • Restricting access • Reducing agricultural productivity • Affecting human health

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Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Use the Native Plant and Weed Identification Guides provided to name and draw a leaf from each type of plant that the students find. Group the plants found into native species and weeds. Can the students find one of Tasmania’s newer weeds, Sea spurge? (Drawing opposite). Note: Remind the students that Sea Spurge is a toxic weed and that touching it can irritate their skin and eyes. Leaf Shapes Group the leaves into their different shapes. Crush the leaves and describe the smell. Do some leaf rubbings.

Activities for Life in a Rock Pool Before doing anything, students sit quietly around the pool, just observing and formulating questions. Q. Are there rainbow colours on the water surface indicating oil? A: Oil can impact on marine birds by causing their feathers to lose their waterproof coating, impacting on their ability to swim and search for food. Oil is also toxic for birds if eaten when preening and for sea creatures if eaten and absorbed. Q. Is the water temperature the same in the rock pool as in the ocean? (thermometer) What types of animals can survive these changes in water temperature? A: Animals are adapted to tolerate certain water temperatures. Water in rock pools is often warmer than the ocean and therefore creatures within it are usually more tolerant of greater temperature change. Q. Is there anything moving in the pool? Are there things not moving in the pool? A: Some creatures have amazing camouflage and adaptations so that they can best hunt for prey and avoid being preyed upon. Eg. A Decorator crab covers itself in seaweed for camouflage. The Sea Urchin is covered in many long sharp spines for protection. Rock Pool Identification Guides should be passed around. Teachers can use a tray and wear gloves as some marine creatures can exude a liquid that can be irritating to the skin and cause a rash. On the blank page with coastal-themed border, students can draw the different things they find. If there is more than one rock pool, alternate between them. Keep particularly interesting creatures aside in a tray for each group to look at as they come through. Note that permits are required to take away any live marine creatures from rock pools for aquariums. 15


Activities for Shells Shells - Use the Shell Identification Guide Shells (molluscs) are the homes of marine creatures. There are two different types of shells. A gastropod is a mollusc that has a stomach and foot.

A bivalve is a hinged mollusc that moves itself by pumping water.

Ask the students to collect 5 types of shells, identify the shells using the ID guides and then draw each one in the boxes in their booklet. Have the students describe each one in the spaces underneath the boxes. (e.g. bivalve, gastropod)

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Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Sea sponges Sea sponges are made of lots of tiny animals living together. Sometimes, we find their skeletons washed up on the shore. Living sponges are often very brightly coloured. They feed and breathe by moving water through tiny holes all through the sponge. Ask the students to see how many different species of sea sponges they can find and draw a detailed picture of one sponge. Encourage the students to use a magnifier to look closely.

Finger Sponge

Fan Sponge

Saucer Sponge

Shorebirds Refer to the Shorebirds of North West Tasmania Pocket ID Booklet for detailed information Q. What kinds of birds can you see? A. Give examples of birds that may be seen on the beach. (eg: Red-capped Plover, Masked Lapwing, Pied Oystercatchers) Q. What are the threats to shorebirds? A. The biggest dangers to shorebirds are people stepping on eggs, causing disturbance to nesting birds and chicks, dogs chasing birds and four wheel driving on beaches. Q. Can you think of making life easier for the shore birds and penguins A. Don’t walk above the high tide mark on the dry sand Don;t trample nests Keep your dog under control Ask the students to list or draw the birds they see. Note: Shorebirds breed between September and March and are particularly vulnerable to disturbance during this time. A simple conservation message is: Walk on the wet sand, stay clear of the high tide mark and look out for birds if walking on sand dunes. 17


Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Cuttlefish Facts Cuttlefish are not fish at all but are related to squid and octopuses. They are called the cephalopods, which literally translated means ‘head-foot’. The Giant Australian Cuttlefish can grow to one metre long. Cuttlefish have three hearts and blue blood! Cuttlefish live on the sea bed, where they hunt for molluscs and small fish. They have a chalky internal shell called cuttlebone that often gets washed ashore. The cuttlebone is collected by some people to feed to their canaries, budgies and parrots as it is a good source of calcium The cuttlefish is a master at camouflage as it can change its colour to match its background and hide from its predators. If the attacking animal still manages to detect the cuttlefish, it ejects black ink at the attacker while it escapes. Can you find any cuttlefish bones (i.e. internal skeleton) on the beach? Look to see if there are any marks on them and try to work out what creature might have eaten WKHP Q: What marine animals eat cuttlefish? A: 3HQJXLQVSacific gulls, small sharks, seals, birds,dolphins DQGILVK Ask students to draw lines matching the predators mouth to correct cuttlefish

Shark egg cases Sharks are an important part of our marine ecosystem Q. What type of sharks live in our seas? A. Port Jackson shark (Up to 1.5 metres, eats bivalve molluscs and has a venomous barb ) Draughtboard shark (These small sharks cruise the top of reefs and can extend their stomach if threatened, thus giving rise to their name. Grows to 1.5 metres). Gummy shark (flake) Mako shark Elephant fish, also known as Elephant shark or Ghost shark

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Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Q. Have students heard of a creature called a skate or a ray? A. Skates and rays are closely related to sharks and are like flattened versions of them. See if the students can find any marine egg cases washed up on the beach. Identify any cases that are found from the diagrams.

Shark egg case Facts An egg case or egg capsule, commonly known as mermaid’s purses or devil’s purses, is a casing that surrounds the fertilised eggs of some sharks and skates. Some sharks give birth to live young. Shark egg cases are among the common objects which are washed up by the sea. Because the cases are lightweight, they are often found at the strandline, the farthest point of the high tide. The egg cases that wash up on beaches are usually empty, the young fish having already hatched. The size of egg cases vary; those of the Small-spotted Catshark or Lesser-spotted Dogfish, Scyliorhinus canicula, are around five centimetres long, while those of the Greater-spotted Dogfish, S. stellaris, are around ten centimetres excluding the four long tendrils found in each corner, which assist in anchorage. Egg cases from skates are different in that they have points rather than tendrils. The colours and shapes of egg cases also vary greatly from species to species. Egg cases are deposited in pairs on the sea floor and hatchlings usually emerge within nine months. Female skates produce fertilised eggs. The egg cases have distinguishable characteristics that make it a great tool to identify different species.

Elephant Fish Egg case is a smooth, black, horny capsule with frilled edge

Skate Egg case is a smooth horny capsule with four points

Port Jackson Shark Spirally flanged black-brown egg case.

Draughtboard Shark Egg capsule is ridged brown, horny with tendrils to attach it to seaweed

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Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary Crabs Questions to ask: Q. In what part of the beach would you find a crab? A. Intertidal zone on a beach such as hiding amongst rocks or buried in sand. Q. What evidence of crabs can you find? A: Crab claws and shells. Q. How many legs do they have? A. Eight legs and two pincers (claws). Q. What do they eat? A. Both algae and small invertebrates. Crabs use the longer pincers to pluck small animals from crevices and are scavengers of the sea floor. Q. How do crabs walk? A. Sideways. Q. What colour are they? A. The colour depends on the species as can be seen by the Crab Identification Guide. Q. How do they protect themselves from predators? A. They have a hard shell and can fight off predators with their pincers. Some can also shed a leg or pincer if grabbed by a predator allowing them to escape. Some crabs also camouflage themselves such as the decorator crab. This crab’s body has spines, knobs and fine hooked hairs through which the crab threads pieces of algae and sponge. Q. How can you tell if a crab is male or female? The male carapace is triangular and the female carapace is rounded. Ask students to find two different types of crabs and record the differences between them. The male’s belly is more triangular and the female’s is rounder and larger.

Female

Male

Students to find two different types of crabs, attempt to identify them using the Crab Identification Guide and record the differences between them. Two common introduced crabs are the Green crab and the New Zealand Half crab. 20


Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Seastars Example of seastars are on the Seastar Identification Guide. Students to write answers in booklets. Q. What do they look like? How many arms do they have? A. A flattened, star-shaped animal, usually with five arms, or arms in multiples of five. Some sea stars have arms which are fused together, so that they look more like a five-pointed pin cushion than a star. There are many different species of sea stars in Tasmania which come in a wide variety of colours and sizes. On our coasts we also have an 11 armed sea star which has between 9 -13 arms. Q. Where do seastars live? A. Along rocky shorelines (most often under or between rocks), or on the sandy sea-floor. Q. What do seastars eat? A. Small marine animals and algae. Some sea stars are very strong and can pry clam shells apart to eat the clam’s insides. A sea star’s mouth is on its underside. To feed, sea stars spit their stomach out of their mouth, cover their prey and digest their prey outside of their body. Once their food has been digested, they suck their stomach back into their mouth. Ask students to draw and describe any sea stars that they find.

Seaweeds Seaweeds come in three colours-green, red and brown. They provide food and shelter for many marine animals. Big, brown seaweeds, called kelp, can create huge underwater forests. Ask students to find any seaweed washed up on the beach and sort them into different colours. Look at the Seaweed Identification Guide. Ask students to draw and name a sample of each type of seaweed found.

Seaweed Facts Seaweed, or Algae, absorb sunlight by photosynthesis and convert the sun’s energy into chemical energy which they use to grow or to store within their cells. Seaweeds come in three colours- green, red and brown. The main photosynthetic pigment in green seaweed is chlorophyll, causing their green colour. Red seaweeds contain green chlorophyll pigments, but also a range of reddish pigments. The red pigment allows the seaweed to collect light of a longer wavelength- the type of light which descends the deepest underwater. Brown seaweeds contain green, yellow to red pigments, so are generally found deeper than green seaweeds but not as deep as red.

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Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Seaweeds cont. Seaweeds come in many shapes and sizes from small lettuce like seaweed clumps to forests of brown kelp. Seaweed is very important in providing food and shelter for a range of marine animals. Seagrasses are flowering plants adapted for life under the water in the marine environment. Seagrass meadows are important habitat for fish and seagrass acts as a nursery for many small marine organisms. Loss of these seagrass beds is considered to be one of the most serious issues in Australia’s marine environment. Seagrass habitats in Tasmania, as elsewhere in the world, have been lost, fragmented and damaged by development and poor catchment management, through practices such as sewage and stormwater discharges, urban runoff, dredging, boating and land reclamation.

Activities for Marine Debris and Beachcombing Marine Debris Hunt Q. What is the most dangerous type of rubbish for marine creatures? A. Examples of the impacts of marine rubbish on marine creatures: • Fishing nets can entangle fish, penguins, seals, dolphins and whales. • Plastic can be mistaken for food and ingested. • Fishing line and hooks can entangle birds and marine life. Q. What is the least dangerous marine debris? A. Paper, food scraps and wood. Discuss with students the most unusual piece of rubbish that they have found. Consider where it may have come from, how far it may have travelled and what type of marine creatures could mistake it for food.

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Booklet for Middle to Upper Primary

Before Leaving the Beach Have the students consider the questions below. These are in their student booklets. Has the beach changed since they arrived? If so, describe how (e.g. Is the temperature hotter or colder, has the tide changed?) What is their favourite marine creature and why? What was their favourite activity at the beach? What did they find most interesting? What things do they think they could take to protect the coastal and marine environment? Questions to ask. Q. What part can students play to protect the coastal and marine environment? A. Sticking to formed tracks to avoid trampling vegetation and destroying animal’s homes • By not removing any creatures from their natural habitats • Staying on the wet sand to avoid shorebird nests • Joining a Coastcare group and help to maintain biodiversity and protect marine environments. • By not littering as it may end up in the ocean and could harm marine creatures. • Make sure when going fishing that all fishing line is taken away as it poses a threat to marine creatures. If any discarded fishing line is found at the beach pick it up and dispose of it (be careful there are no sharp hooks!). • When fishing take only what is needed and adhere to size and catch limits. Carefully release any under sized fish. This will allow fish to breed and increase their numbers so we continue to have plenty of fish for food in the future.Think of the link, the sea to the sink…… • What goes down the drain ends up in the sea….Eg. wash cars on the lawn so the detergents do not go down the storm water drain and end up in the ocean.

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Extra Activities

Beach Scavenger Hunt Students are asked to search the beach to find the things below.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

some litter a piece of rope something precious something red something very old a large shell

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

something living something dead a skeleton a colourful rock something shiny something spiky

Short story exercise

Students are asked to write a short story about the most interesting thing they have learned today and why it is important to know.

Colouring in Students are to colour in the picture on the last page of their booklets.

Drawing Students are to draw a picture of their favourite marine creature.

Sea Creature Exercise Students to choose a sea creature. It could be a penguin, seal, sea eagle or whale. Pretend they are that creature and write about their life. What do they eat, where do they live, who are their enemies? What are the other dangers to them and how can humans help to make their life better?

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Books and Websites

Books: Amazing Facts about Australian Marine Life: Steve Parish Australian Guide to Seashores: Gould League books Between Tasmanian Tide Lines: A Field Guide: Tasmanian Marine Field Neutralists Coastlands and the Sea: Activity Book- Understanding Australian Habitats Environmental Starters: Gould League Kids and Water; Marine Reader Series: Wet Paper Putting a toe in the water: A teacher’s guide

Websites Gould League - www.gould.edu.au Marine Education Association of Australasia - www.mesa.edu.au Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Education - www.parks.tas.gov.au Cradle Coast Natural Resource Management - www.cradlecoastnrm.com

Other Resources: Marine Links Kit: Fishcare - Phone 0408337317 Coastcare Treasure Chests: box of coastal and marine related books and other resources available to lend to teachers. Two levels: lower and upper primary. Available from the Sustainable Living Centre, Hobart, phone: (03)6234 5566.

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Profile for Cradle Coast Tasmania

Coastal Discovery Booklet - Teacher's Guide  

Coastal Discovery Booklet - guide book for teachers.

Coastal Discovery Booklet - Teacher's Guide  

Coastal Discovery Booklet - guide book for teachers.