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Revealing riches of the rocky shore

Jul 1st, 2009 | By | Category: Latest News, News

ariana-millar-copyANYONE who ever wondered what lurks in the rock pools around Wellington’s southern coast may get a chance to find out from an expert.

A marine biologist will soon lead regular walks around the shoreline, if Island Bay Marine Education Centre plans come to fruition.

The centre is also considering family open days every Sunday, following the success of the regular monthly ones.

The centre, which provides education days and activities such as snorkelling for children during the school term, is extending its activities to include holiday programmes.

The Island Bay Marine Education Centre aims at educating visitors about the ocean’s importance.

Operations manger and trustee Marco Zeeman, right, says: “Most people don’t realise that 70% of the air we breathe comes from a healthy ocean not from the trees.”

Members of the public who attended this month’s open day were positive about the centre’s programmes.

Island Bay resident Tjalling van Asbeck says the centre is “kid friendly” and enables people “… to know what’s in the water around where they live”.

Primary school teacher Judith Dunlop, who was also at the open day, says by learning about the ocean at the centre, children will be more aware of its significance as an adult.

Parent Paul Millin receives emails alerting him to open days and is impressed with its programmes, having visited the centre on several occasions with his family.
 
Daughter Ariana Millin says: “I think it’s really cool, because in the touch pool it’s really good … you can touch [the animals] and touch some of the crabs and stuff.”

The centre’s trust is proposing relocation to Lyall Bay by 2012, after plans to build afresh at Te Raekaihau Point were stymied by local objectors.
 
PICTURE: Ariana Millin (left) with other visitors by the Island Bay Marine Centre’s touch pool.

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