I had a lot of fun talking about food webs, habitat connectivity, and (of course) Fundulus with an excited but polite group of 3d and 4th graders at the Ellis School in New Hampshire. The asked some really thoughtful questions about how humans impact the ocean, what they can do as individuals to lessen their impact, and why I love Fundulus. They also asked some really tough ones, like how many species of fishes are in the sea (I had to look it up - there are close to 34,000 species identified), and what the average day is like in the life of a scientist. Interacting with groups of engaged, inquisitive, and sincere students like these always fills me with optimism about our future.
I also would like to thank Sarah McAnulty (@SarahMackAttack on Twitter), Founder of Skype A Scientist, and these students’ teachers, Erin and Hannah. It is thanks to Sarah’s hard work these long-distance classroom visits exist (plus her twitter feed is awesome), and it is teachers like Erin and Hannah who do so much to prepare our next generation of scientists, decision-makers, and informed citizens. Thanks you guys! And I hope you get to see some Fundulus heteroclitus (“mummichogs”) the next time you go to the beach!
Here is a screenshot from our Skype Chat!