Last Saturday we took our second annual trip to Monterey, CA! We started out at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which for many students was their first ever aquarium visit. Their favorite part was probably the open sea exhibit, which features a giant tank (just the viewing window measures 90 feet across!) full of sharks, tuna, ocean sun fish, and a huge school of sardines. After leaving the aquarium we stopped for a pizza lunch at the municipal beach. Despite the sub-60 degree water temperatures, some of our students just couldn't resist the urge to take a swim. After lunch, we headed out of town to the Elkhorn Slough Estuarine Preserve, where we took a wildlife watching boat tour and got to see sea otters, sea lion, seals, and birds up close and personal!
Posing for a group photo. Thank you Janet and David for helping lead the trip!
Getting to feel a bat ray's skin in one of the touch pools.
Staring out into the open sea exhibit. This tank is so big you can't see the back of it.
Spying otters and diving sea birds from the aquarium's balcony.
Looking up at a school of sardines swimming in synchrony.
Hot day but cold water!
On the boat.
Looking out at harbor seals sunning on the shore. These animals sleep all day and eat all night, which our students thought was a teenagers dream lifestyle!
Checking out their first California sea lion as we left the marina.
Welcome to La Mera Ciencia, the official blog of Menlo-Atherton Ecology Research Outdoors (MERO). Founded in 2017, MERO is a free, after-school environmental education program for high school English Language Learners that gets students outside doing ecology. Mero (or mera for feminine words like ciencia) is Spanish for "legit" or "the real thing", which is exactly the kind of science we do in the MERO program!