Year 11 Biology Field Trip
Year 11 Biology Field Trip
As a part of the ‘Ecology’ unit this term, the two Year 11 Biology classes attended an excursion in Week 4. Over the two days, we engaged in a variety of practical field tests and evaluations. On Monday, we travelled to the Woombye section of Petrie Creek in the Maroochy Catchment. We tested soil pH levels and texture and collected water quality data using professional equipment. The equipment tested water pH, salinity, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, conductivity and temperature. These tests then provided us with data to make inferences about the quality of the ecosystems we visited. Along with those tests, we also conducted vegetation surveys (observing the variety of species of plants and trees in the area) and aquatic macroinvertebrate identifications (identifying species of water-dwelling animals without spines that you can see with the naked eye). We also visited the Nambour section of Petrie Creek and compared our two sets of results, considering the human impact and the health of the ecosystem.
We faced the heat at Parklakes II in Bli Bli, investigating the new and innovative floating wetlands, which have been implemented to effectively treat storm water runoff. We then visited the Golden Beach mangrove boardwalk to observe the important role mangroves play in our coastline ecosystems and learnt how they effectively filter salt out of the water.
At the Currimundi Conservation Wallum, we saw first-hand the intensity of the Australian bushland and learnt about how the banksia uses bushfire to spread their seeds and prepare for mass plantings. We then visited Ewen Maddock Dam, which has an impressive eco-system built around the man-made lake, providing drinking water to the local area with the capacity to provide for Brisbane. This showed us the importance of working with nature to sustain humanity.
Unfortunately, we also had the chance to see the negative impact we are having on the natural environment at a local level. Janine from ECOllaboration had some tips to reduce damage in our local catchment:
- REDUCE POLLUTANTS IN WATERWAYS: Use eco-safe labelled products, wash your car on your lawn and let the soap filter through the soil and be aware of chemical herbicides and fertilisers used in your garden.
- STOP THE SPREAD OF INTRODUCED PLANT SPECIES: Dispose of weeds and lawn clippings properly in the green bin with the red lid and try planting native plants in your backyard.
- VOLUNTEER FOR YOUR LOCAL LANDCARE: By volunteering to clear introduced species or test local water quality, you largely help the organisations keeping the Sunshine Coast's environments healthy. Mooloolah Land Care Volunteers: http://www.mooloolahwaterwatchandlandcare.org/vounteer.html.
- LOVE YOUR ENVIRONMENT: Above all else, Janine wanted all of us to appreciate and love our natural environment so we are motivated to protect it throughout our life.
Thank you to all the teachers, volunteers and ECOllaboration for organising and running a great two days!
Mali Davis, Year 11 Biology Student