You Make the Call! (Roll Call That is)
this. Manatees are swimming all around you as you paddle up the Blue Spring
Run. You see them, you see they all look different and have different
scars. But what do you do to try and identify them before they swim off?
Students will try to identify selected Blue Spring Manatees by looking at photographs, sketching what they see, and then comparing both the sketches and the photos to Ranger Wayne's Scar Charts which depict previously identified Manatees. This visual comparison is similar to how Scientists visually identify manatees.
Materials Needed--Print and Go!
Step One: Photographs--Getting to Know You
The Manatees' photographs are labeled A-F. Study each manatee photograph carefully. Look for distinguishing scars or other features that make this manatee unique, look for and consider:
Step Two: Sketching the Scars
Now, take a look at the Key Handout to see how Manatee Scientists sketch and label the Manatees' scars, cuts, and other features.
Example: If I'm looking at the photograph of Manatee A, I label my worksheet "A", and sketch as accurately as I can the features I see in the photo( and any that are missing too.) I sketch my drawing on my Sketch Worksheet as if I'm looking down onto the manatee's back.
Step Three: Comparing Ranger Wayne's Scar Sheet to Your Roll Call
Well done! You just saw lots of Manatees while "in the canoe". You were very observant and made many good sketches and notes. Now you're back on dry land and need to figure out WHO you just saw!
Here's what to do:
(Remember, it's not easy photographing manatees. They certainly are not idle! Plus, water conditions, wind, glare and other things can obscure a clear view too. And a photo is just a snapshot in time. After one photo, the manatees' appearances may change as new scars appear, old scars heal and fade.)
Now, can you tell Ranger Wayne who you saw in the Run today?
National Science Education Standards
Science as Inquiry
Scientists use different kinds of investigations depending on the questions they are trying to answer. Types of investigations include describing objects, events, and organisms. (K-4)
Different kinds of questions suggest different kinds of scientific investigations. Some involve observing and describing objects, organisms, or events. (5-8)
(Photo Credit A-D: U. S. Geological Survey USGS/Florida Caribbean Science Center)
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