Writing a feature in your school newsletter is a great way to educate people on our local environment, encourage them to make changes, and spread the word about the wonderful work of your school and EcoMarines!
Moreton Bay is such a special place, and being so close to Brisbane, it is very important that everyone helps to look after it! Why is Moreton Bay such a special place?
It is only 14 kilometres from Brisbane city.
It contains many environmentally significant habitats.
There are 360 islands in total.
It is home to 2,344 plant species, including eight species of mangrove and seven species of seagrass as well as:
2000 loggerhead turtles (Moreton Bay is the most significant habitat in Australia for loggerhead turtles)
600 dolphins (two species of dolphins that inhabit the area, but up to eight species visit)
800-900 dugongs (the largest herd of dugongs close to a major city!)
10,000 green sea turtles
Over 120 species of coral
Over 1000 species of fish
Nine whale species
Six of the seven marine turtle species can be found in Moreton Bay!
Moreton Bay is home to 25% of ALL Australian bird species.
Kangaroo: Kangaroos give birth to one joey at a time, but they can be raising 3 babies at the same time. They can be pregnant, have a tiny joey in their pouch and a joey out of the pouch!
Pelican: Pelicans can fly 3 kilometres high in the sky. Most school ovals are around 200 metres… so that’s like 15 laps of your play area! Pretty high, hey?
Dolphin: Did you know that dolphins have names for each other? They each use a unique whistle to call out to one another.
Whale: Did you know that 9 species of whales visit Moreton Bay! These whales are making their way from their breeding grounds in Antarctica to warmer waters in the tropics for feeding!
Turtle: The temperature of the turtle nests dictates the gender of the eggs when they hatch. Warmer nests lead to more females and cooler nests leads to more males!
Jellyfish: Jellyfish have been around for 650 million years! This means there is evidence that jellyfish have been on the planet before dinosaurs ever were!
Shark: Sharks do not have bones! They are part of a group of animals called Elasmobranchs meaning that their skeleton is made up of cartilage… the same stuff found in your ears and the tip of your nose.
Butterfly: Did you know that each species of butterfly is attracted to different host plants? This is one or two types of plant that different types of butterflies lay their eggs on, and then the caterpillars feed on that same plant. For example, the Orchard SwaIlowtail butterfly loves to lay eggs on lemon, lime and orange trees. I look for butterflies, caterpillars and eggs whenever I walk past certain trees now!
Manta ray: Manta rays are filter feeders. This means that they use their fins around their mouths to push water through their mouths. When this happens, they have special systems in their mouths to comb the water for the smallest of animals to eat.
Coral: Corals are not plants as many people think! Most corals are actually home to millions of tiny animals called polyps. Polyps look like jellyfish and also having stinging cells like jellyfish too. They live together as a colony in a coral skeleton.
Stingrays: Stingrays lay eggs inside their stomachs and the eggs hatch inside. They then give birth to their babies and they fly out like little tacos!
Camels: Camels have three eyelids! Two of them have eyelashes to help protect their eyes from large objects. One of them is actually an invisible eyelid that opens and closes side to side instead of up and down. They use this eyelid when they need protection but also need to see where they are going.