Date: June 5, 2013
Tonight’s Location: Homer, AK
Temperature: start 42º
Wildlife count: Sea Anemone, Sea Cucumber, Sea Jelly, Tunicate, Barnacles, Sea Urchin
Year List: 244
Birds: Scaup, Red-necked Grebes, Orange-crowned Warbler, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Song Sparrow, Golden-crowned Sparrow, Hermit Thrush, Northwestern Crow, Bald Eagle, Common Raven
Our first class this morning was on fish and shellfish regulations and why and how the fisheries are regulated – it was very interesting. Then we had a lab class on plankton – any critter that floats is plankton – some plants, some animals, and some don’t fit either category or both. The teacher had obtained a lot of water samples, and they all had critters moving in them – we were able to identify a lot of them and had a great time.
With the sunny weather, we all ate our lunches outdoors and then headed for the harbor. We took a Homer History tour, where we learned that Homer had been a coal mining town – coal was mined from the bluffs along the beach that now are host to expensive homes. We also learned lots about the three different kinds of fishing boats – purse seines, long line and gill netting. We had walked the harbor often, but never knew about the different kinds of commercial fishing boats. Our guide and some of the participants had worked on those boats – how interesting!
Then our group took a Creatures of the Dock tour, where we laid on our bellies and found all kinds of creatures – intertidal creatures – clinging to the dock to find life. It was amazing! We saw so many up close – never knew they were there.
Dinner was a simple salad, spaghetti and garlic bread, with left-over rice pudding for dessert. It is a spectacular evening – blue skies, a few clouds over the Harding Ice Field and almost calm waters reflecting the mountains across the bay. It is hard to go to bed when sunset isn’t until 11:15 and it is SO beautiful outdoors, but we are ready!