Tuesday 9 March 2010

More from the Mokupapapa Discovery Center


I’ve had a great time hanging out with everyone here at Mokupapapa. They showed me all around the exhibits that showed off all sorts of amazing animals you find up in the Monument.
I even got to meet a Laysan Albatross. I’ve been wearing this tag from Fred the Monkey for a long time now, and this was the first time I got to see one close up. (Hmm, I wonder what my buddy Fred is up to?)
(c) NOAA

Their wings stretch over five feet across! (over 1.5 metres). That’s so they can soar for thousands of miles all around the Pacific Ocean. I asked him if he knew x360, but he said he hadn’t known him.

It seems like there are some well travelled animals here in Hawaii. I also met a green sea turtle who explained that he was born 500 miles away, like most green sea turtles, in the Monument.
He said his family and all of the other families he knows all do that - swim all that way to give birth, and then come back to one of the Main Hawaiian Islands the rest of the time.

(c) NOAA Newly hatched green turtle makes for the safety of the ocean.

(c) NOAA Adult green sea turtle

The real star of the Monument is the coral polyp.

I sat in on a lesson that Tanya was giving to some local children about polyps and finally started to understand how the coral fits into the picture of the life of an island. The coral keeps growing around the islands, even as the islands erode away.

(c) NOAA .The coral is shown as yellow

After awhile, all that is left is coral and the rock is under the water. But that’s okay, because the coral reefs create homes for all sorts of ocean critters.
(c) NOAA

The reefs also help form sandy islands – like the one that the green sea turtle was born on. And it all starts with a tiny coral polyp – small but mighty!

I’ve had a great time here, but Sam says I still have all sorts of cool places to visit, and we need to get going. Aloha Hawaii!

1 comment:

  1. What a great diary of your trip! Thanks so much for sharing and safe travels.