The 6th grade Cambridge students from Grand Bay Middle School had the opportunity to visit the Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Moss Point, Mississippi. Mr. Rick Ranew, K-12 Specialist, was our instructor during the visit. The students arrived at 9 a.m. and were able to witness the male Osprey flying overhead delivering food to the female who was sitting on top of a very large nest, on top of the power pole. The morning flowed into learning how the facility was built and is self-sustaining. The students also took a surprise pretest! The rest of the morning was spent on a hike to Hawk’s Marsh learning how to use a compass, showing students biodiversity of plants and animals and learning about coastal and environmental issues. The students had
The students had hands on activities identifying and rubbing trees, using the compass and being quite, listening for different animal and bird sounds with in the woods. A box turtle was sited, a bald eagles nest and a variety of fauna and flora. Mr. Renew talked to the students about taking care of the environment and natural resources located on the Gulf Coast. The oil spill and recent fires that have occurred were topics that really intrigued the students. Before lunch the students traveled by bus to Bayou Heron and learned that an estuary is where fresh water and salt water meet, also known as brackish water. The students conducted a water quality test and learned that since it had rained recently that the water was mainly fresh water that day, but it can vary. Learning how to cast net was next on the agenda, which was very entertaining! A few nets hit the water but were saved! The students pulled in oyster shells and clear jellies that did not sting! While cast netting a snake a few small shoreline fish were spotted! It was an amazing experience, thanks to Mr. Ranew.