Last night was the first BARC Science Fair, coordinated by Kaare Erickson, the North Slope Science Liaison. Pictured: Ruth Rodriguez and Tabitha Fuson (right to left) assisting students investigating the growth rings on beluga whale teeth. Photo by Vanessa Lougheed.
The activities for the day included events for all ages, including labs by the Department of Wildlife Management – Determining the Age of Bowhead and beluga whales, a Ringed Seal necropsy, and a fish dissection! A mummified ringed seal collected at Walakpa Beach.
The kids loved it! Kids got to dissect a whale eye. I was amazed that mostly all of the kids were not squeamish at all and pretty eager to get their hands dirty. I learned so much really cool science – counting the growth lines on beluga whale teeth will give you the age of whale. Participants also got to see a mummified seal! The Bowhead Whale Eyes set up for dissection.
Students got to visit around the BARC and see the scientist in their native habitats – labs! The days events wrapped with talks with scientists where UTEP scientist Dr. Craig Tweedie, presented on coastal erosion and what UTEP is doing in the Arctic. The event will continue for the next two days and the UTEP Systems lab will be holding activities Thursday. Friday the Aquatic lab will be holding some activities in the afternoon. Tomorrow we will prep for the next days activities!