Zoology & Botany

sponges, sea anemones, sea stars, sea cucumber,s crabs, fish, angelfish, butterfly fish, seahorse - coral reefs

Prepare a picture of/book about/coral reefs, sponges, sea anemones, sea stars, sea cucumber´s crabs, fish, angelfish, butterfly fish, seahorse in advance,

(Show a picture of a Coral Reef)Say: Coral reefs are diverse underwater ecosystems held together by calcium carbonate structures secreted by corals. Corals live in tropical waters throughout the world, generally close to the surface where the sun's rays can reach the algae. Reefs are home to 25% of all marine life, and form the nurseries for about a quarter of the ocean's fish.

(Show a picture of sponges)Say: Sponges are multicellular organisms that have bodies full of pores and channels allowing water to circulate through them, consisting of jelly-like substance sandwiched between two thin layers of cells. Sponges are found across the sea floor. They have no organs, and obtain their nutrition from the water that is continuously flowing through them.

(Show a picture of sea anemones)Say: Although Sea Anemones look like flowers, they are predatory animals. These invertebrates have no skeleton at all. Sea Anemones offer hundreds of tentacles that allow them to identify their surroundings. They can also sting things around them and release venom through those tentacles. They live attached to firm objects in the seas, usually the sea floor, rock, or coral.

(Show a picture of sea stars)Say: Sea stars have five arms connected to a small round body. They detect light with five purple eyespots at the end of each arm. The bright orange dot in the center of the body pumps water into the sea star's body. This pumping action creates suction at the end of hundreds of tube feet, located in paired rows on the underside of the arms.

(Show a picture of sea cucumbers)Say: The Sea Cucumbers are marine worm-like animals with a leathery skin and an elongated body. The wall of their bodies is formed by collagen. This allows them to make their body loose or tight. These echinoderms usually live on the sea floor and breathe via their anus. Sea cucumbers feed on tiny particles like algae and minute aquatic animals.

(Show a picture of sea crabs)Say: Crabs are decapod crustaceans which have a very short tail and are covered with a thick exoskeleton; they are armed with a single pair of claws. Crabs have flattened bodies, two feeler antennae, and two eyes located on the end of stalks; they are 10-legged animals that walk sideways. The crabs hunt by sitting in a dark hole and catching potential prey that swims past.

(Show a picture of fish)Say: A fish is an animal which lives and breathes in water. All fish are vertebrates and most breathe through gills and have fins and scales. Their fins are used for balance and to help propel and steer through the water. Fish secrete a type of mucus from their skin. This slime coating is important because it provides protection against parasites and diseases, and helps fish move through the water faster.

(Show a picture of angelfish)Say: Angelfish are primarily silver and have an aquatic angelic quality due to their soft flowing lines and graceful movements. This fish is rather diamond shaped or leaf-like in appearance. It has a rounded body that is greatly compressed laterally accented with long, triangular dorsal and anal fins. Vertical black bars are visible along the fish’s body.

(Show a picture of butterfly fish) Say: The butterfly fish is well known for its brightly colored body and elaborate markings. Butterfly fish can be distinguished from angelfish by the dark spots on their bodies, dark bands around their eyes and the fact that the mouth of the butterfly fish is more pointed than the mouth of the angelfish. Butterfly fish are diurnal animals which mean that they feed during the day and rest in the coral during the night.

(Show a picture of seahorse) Say: Seahorses are fish. They live in water, breath through gills; have a swim bladder and a long snake-like tail. They also have a neck and a snout that points down. Seahorses propel themselves by using a small fin on their back that flutters up to 35 times per second. Even smaller pectoral fins located near the back of the head are used for steering. Due to their colorings, seahorses are able to camouflage themselves pretty effectively into the coral reef to hide from their predators.

Remember, For many coastal areas, coral reefs provide an important barrier against the worst ravages of storms, hurricanes, and typhoon. Coral reefs are essential not only to ocean health, but also to human health and well-being.

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