Field Outings to Sandy Point State Park, Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, Merrimack River Estuary & Coastal Waters both ashore and afloat
May, June, September & October 2011
Call on us to help you plan a customized field outing with your students that complements your curriculum and connects your students to the amazing diversity of life and ecosystems along the Massachusetts and New Hampshire coastline. Our teacher-naturalists are available to lead field outings on Plum Island’s Sandy Point, Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, Salisbury Beach State Reservation, into the marshes, and along the water’s edge. If you’d like to take your class afloat, the Erica Lee is an excellent platform for a Floating Lab expedition. We are happy to pull all of the pieces together for you and create a field outing that meets your specific needs and interests. Just give us a call!
All trips may start inside our ocean education center, located just steps away from downtown Newburyport and its harborside boardwalk, with plenty of picnic spots by the river. Here we can easily accommodate your students as we provide pre-and post-trip discussion.
Afloat, the Erica Lee is available for 24 of your students during spring and fall for custom-built field trips that explore the Merrimack River and Gulf of Maine watershed. Onboard equipment includes a scientific otter trawl, plankton net, bottom grabber, water sampling and analysis. We also can do a variety of fishing and dissections. For larger groups or classes of 25-50 students, we use the Captain George or Captain’s Lady on Plum Island.
Ashore, we can lead your students on a discovery through the Great Marsh, tidepools, or barrier beaches of Plum Island and Salisbury. Teacher-Naturalists are happy to visit your school in advance of your trip to provide an overview of the Merrimack River and Gulf of Maine watershed.
Contact us for details.
A Sampling of our Field Offerings Include:
Ship to Shore
Our full day program provides a combination of our shipboard program and a shore component. Spend the morning exploring the Merrimack River and coastal waters aboard the Erica Lee with a focus on coastal ecosystems. Then return to shore at noon and take a trip to Plum Island, where we’ll spend the afternoon investigating the sandy beach, rocky shore, salt marsh and barrier beach ecosystems. You’ll experience first hand the wide diversity of marine organisms that are found in these habitats and gain an appreciation for the unique adaptations that allow them to thrive in their environment.
Learn about the critical role estuaries play in our coastal environment. Cruise the Merrimack River and Great Salt Marsh aboard the Erica Lee. Conduct water tests, record data, and learn how we look for indicators of the health of our estuary. Examine a living estuary food chain by observing marine birds, sampling for fish, and collecting plankton. Compile water quality data and investigate the microscopic members of the food chain back in our riverfront classroom.
We’ll travel down the Merrimack River and explore the fascinating Great Salt Marsh estuary, the barrier beaches of Salisbury and Plum Island, and coastal waters of Ipswich Bay and the Gulf of Maine. Stations may include water analysis, plankton tows, otter trawl sampling, hauling lobster traps, fishing and birdwatching.
Outreach Programs in Your School
Let us bring the sea to you! BOAT CAMP Inc.’s teacher-naturalists are always available to bring marine science enrichment to your school. Typical programs include bringing live touch tank animals into your classroom for hands-on discovery of tidepools as a habitat. Other themes available on request.
We are always available to customize our outings to best match your curriculum. Just ask us how!