|Detail, "Spring Meditation" by Sherrie Spangler copyright 2013|
|"Spring Meditation" by Sherrie Spangler copyright 2013|
In other Earth Day happenings, I volunteered yesterday at the Harbor WildWatch booth in Gig Harbor during the Paddlers Cup event. Like our sign says, "Ask Questions. Touch Stuff," and this dog tried really hard to touch the giant sunflower sea star in our kiddie pool.
The sunflower (Pycnopodia helianthoides) is the largest sea star in the world, with a maximum arm span of about a meter. We didn't measure ours, but I'd say it was pretty close to that.
Kids (and adults) love to touch the sea stars -- we tell them to use one finger and to be gentle. The star below is called an ochre star (Pisaster ochraceus), and it can be either ocher in color or purple, orange, pink and all shades in between.
Our divers and naturalists (that's Naturalist Rachel below) collect the creatures from the water near our booth and return them to the same spot after we close up. We make sure to keep them in the shade and to aerate the water or change it periodically. Our main purpose is to educate the public about the rich marine life of our area in the hope that they'll want to protect it. http://www.harborwildwatch.org/
|"Just kidding just hurts!"|
Have a colorful day