Posts Tagged ‘Northern elephant seal’

Northern elephant seals at Race Rocks

May 15, 2017

During the first year field exam at Race Rocks on Friday 12 May (post to follow…), there were 11 northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) that provided both entertainment and answers to the students writing the exam.

One of the questions on the field exam involved observing elephant seals and the seals seemed happy to oblige.

Over the course of the morning, many of the elephant seals made their way to the water.

Once in the water, one elephant seal was frolicking in the bull kelp and blowing bubbles.

In the water

Some students even tried behaving like elephant seals:

Elephant seals

Sea lions, seals and orcas, oh my!

September 28, 2016

First year marine scientists had a wonderful experience at Race Rocks on Friday 23 September. We went to explore this amazing ecosystem and to observe marine mammals and birds.


We brought Felix Butschek (yr 36, Austria) along:


More details to follow on his visit later…

We did see (and hear and smell!) many, many sea lions:

We were also lucky to observe five Northern elephant seals:

As an added bonus one group of students also saw orcas:

For more photos see Flickr album here. And for Anne’s summary of the day and some better orca photos, see the Race Rocks blog.

What a day for mammals!

September 30, 2015

During a second year Marine Science class discussion of human impacts on the mudflats, a student shouted “there’s a bear!”Bears3 Bears

So much for the mudflats… all the students rushed down on to the dock to watch the TWO bears run towards the spiritual centre.

Later in the day, a first year class was welcomed ashore at Great Race Island by the usual suspects, California sea lions, Stellar sea lions and a Northern elephant seal.Pinnipeds

The two highlights of the trip to Race Rocks for me (and the students) though were the humpback whale that was feeding just west of reserve and the sea otter that was frolicking in the kelp on the east side of the island. I took a few terrible photos (worse than the bear photos above), but please see Anne’s photos on the Race Rocks blog (humpback fluke and sea otter).

Kate watching humpback

Field Exam 2014 – D block

May 16, 2014

RR2 It was a stunningly beautiful Thursday morning when eight D block marine scientists travelled to Race Rocks to complete their field exam. Kami Students measured, Hanne2 and measured, Erika Laura Zeena and wrote, Erika Tyleisha and wrote, Killaq and wrote. Hanne A very successful morning for the students and for the island wildlife: Anemone eating A giant green anemone (Anthopleura xanthogrammica) feasting on what appeared to be a sea cucumber. There were also many, many elephant seals: Elephant seal flies Elephant seals Elephant seal2 Elephant seal   Special thanks to Anne Stewart for preparing the students so well: AnneAnne2 and to Elliot (PC 39) for the photos. Elliot

Race Rocks exploration – 11 April 2013

April 21, 2013

Both first year classes of Marine Science students visited Race Rocks on Thursday 11 April in order to measure abiotic factors in the rocky intertidal zone and to compile a species list.  B block students braved the elements in the morning and although I didn’t take any photos of them on the island, they were great explorers and we all survived despite the very windy weather…

Keira Emilio Mikelle Taran PCAmalia asleep

D block students were very fortunate in two ways – the sun was shining on them and they were accompanied by Garry Fletcher, Educational Director of Race Rocks.

Garry & DavisGarry & Marc Garry & followersGarry tidepool


Abiotic factors such as water temperature and salinity were recorded…TS meterNotetakersElliot & EmilySophia green pool

And a few species observed & recorded…

Elephant sealsElephant sealRocky intertidalP1010218

Then it was back to Pearson College again…

Students & towerSteph & Johan

Thanks to Laila for the D block photos!