>From: "Deb Yancey" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Subject: satellite maps of harbor, harbor and gray seals and logger head
>Date: Tue, Dec 2, 2003, 7:59 PM
> Dear Mr. Hoyt,
> I am an eighth grade science teacher in northern new york state. I
> am working with Syracuse University and NASA to introduce students to NASA
> web resources. In a recent activity, we looked at the Argos satellite and
> the tracking program involving The NEw England Aquarium.
> From the web site, whale.wheelock.edu/ we looked at the movement of the
> Seals, Tom, Nikki, Wade and Valentine.. We also looked at the loggerhead
> turtle. I had the students analyze tge movement patterns over time and
> then hypothesize the reason for their particular movement.
> could you please give me some additional information on what causes
> their particular patterns of movement or is this somewhat random?
> Valentine really had some rather peculiar movements. Also, does the
> tagging process its self cause the animals to move differently than normal.
> Could you please look at these maps for the five animals and give me your
> opinion of what caused their movement pattern? I would appreaciate your
> interpretation of their movement and will share this with my students...
> Thank you for your time..... Debbie Yancey
> My e mail is email@example.com
Sorry for the delay, as I was trying to double check this with my
colleagues. As I suspected, we don't have specific answers, based on
research, that would be able to tell us why they they move around the way
they do. What you and your class are doing, essentially, is asking the same
questions as the researchers! This is good. What might be fun, now, is to
hypothesize why they may be moving from one place to another at a specific
time of year and then get the class to try to figure out how to test that.
For example, if you think the movements may be food-related, then maybe it
would be necessary to acquire data on specific prey food availability by
season and location. It could be interesting (indicative though most likely
inconclusive) to see if there are satellite maps of the ocean showing ocean
productivity levels by season. These could be compared with the plots
showing seal movement.
The process of science may well be more important to show than the
Hope this helps
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