Lucerne Valley Elementary School students were taken on a virtual marine excursion to the Caribbean on February 28 when real-life ocean explorers Wayne and Karen Brown presented “The Silver Bank Humpback Whale Expedition” in Goulding Hall.
Students in grades 3 through 6 met a replica 20-foot long baby humpback whale, which looked like ones the Browns saw during a 2016 expedition to the Silver Bank. The area, near the Caribbean Sea, is the world’s largest humpback whale breeding grounds.
The assembly began with an introduction to whales in general and humpback whales in particular. Several students were chosen from the audience to demonstrate how whales adapt to their environment. Models were used to help demonstrate how whales are different from bony fish and the different ways whales catch their food. The Lucerne Valley students got to see real whale baleen, teeth, vertebrae and a seven-foot long narhwal tusk. They learned how humpback whales make "bubble nets" to catch the tiny krill.
Following the demonstrations, the hosts took the students on an exciting adventure, via a fascinating, high-definition digital multi-image presentation, in search of humpback whales in their winter breeding grounds, in the warm waters of the Silver Bank by the Caribbean Sea. In this multi-image presentation the students joined the Browns on the expedition boat where they met the captain. The students saw male humpback whales competing for mates and heard males singing underwater love songs to attract females.
The highlight of the presentation is a swim with a mother humpback whale and her newborn baby. After the multi-image presentation, the students came face-to-face “Herby,” the 20-foot inflatable baby humpback whale.
To learn more, visit www.theoceanadventure.com.
Photos by LVES Principal Mr. Burt Umstead