Biology Field Trip

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate September 2001

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Biology Field Trip To Rocky Point On Thursday September 20 my biology 11 class and I boarded the Fisheries & Ecology bus to go on one of the most interesting field trips to Rocky Point. When we arrived at the Rocky Point peer we boarded Mr. MacVicars boat, The Ocean Watch, and we were soon on our way through the Burrard Inlet.

Since our classes are only 1 hour and 15 minutes long we didn't have as much time as we would have liked. During our 45-minute boat trip we saw and learned some amazing things. Our Captain Mr. MacVicar didn't waste any time as we went straight for the log booms to view the harbor seals. When we arrived at the log booms Mr. MacVicar stopped the boat and we all had a chance to listen to some interesting facts that our teacher Mrs. Foster had talked to us about.

An interesting observation that I noticed was the close to one hundred seals on the logs. The majority of them seemed to be in one section fairly close to one another. Harbor seals have short front flippers, large eyes, and thick whiskers and can grow as long as 2 meters long. The seals we saw seemed to be mostly grey, black, brown with a short, thick fur coat on their backs and hairless stomachs. Another observation that I noticed was that the adult seals seem to have many black spots and the younger seals didn't have any spots what so ever. Once we got close to the seals I saw that they had flaps that go over their noses which I later learned are used for keeping water out of their respiratory system when they go under water.

This was a most interesting field trip and a wonderful learning experience regarding the life and habits of our local harbor seals. I would like to recommend everyone to take any opportunities they have to visit the harbor seals of Coquitlam.