Thursday, May 12, 2011

Creature Encounters

Hello! Today is our fourth day on the ship and we're already well on our way to becoming excellent scientists and seamen. This morning, as we were processing our plankton tows, we were overcome with inspiration from the creatures we were finding. We caught everything from deep sea anglerfish to baby puffer fish-and, of course, a million copepods! As part of the daily ship's meeting, the dawn watch answers a question and presents the findings to the awaiting shipmates.

Caleb, Laura and Bri introduce their classmates
to the heteropod
Today we presented on a magical creature: the heteropod! A member of the snail class, heteropods make their home in the open ocean. These snails are a little different from your garden variety; their shell is reduced and their foot has evolved into an undulating fin, allowing them to thrive in the deep, blue sea.

As poetry has been a theme of our ship's meetings, we thought we would share a poem we wrote, inspired by this fantastic snail.

Song of the Heteropod

I was swimming in the ocean blue
enjoying a midnight snack
When I was captured by the Seaman's crew in a Neuston net attack

I was hauled upon the salty deck
and hurled into the tank
There the man of war had me a nervous wreck, and from his stinging grasp I shrank

"What could it be?" I heard the mammals ask "This creature is quite odd."
Then under the microscope light I did bask 'til they exclaimed, "It's a beautiful heteropod!"

Over and out!
-Bri, Caleb, and Laura C.
A Watch

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