|We brought coolers on board to hold collected animals|
|Students sort through catch from the dredge|
The mud flats we visit are home to a variety of mollusks that thrive in an environment of changing tides, including oysters, whelks, conchs, and clams. We visit at low tide, which allows us to cover more area and find animals to collect.
|Jessi fights through the deep mud|
|CNU student Emily Wolford shows off the lightning whelk she found (eating a clam)|
After the boating and trekking through mud flats, students have a lab session that gives them a chance to go through and identify the collected specimens.
|Dr. Gwynne Brown, professor of biology at CNU, talks about the water vascular system of sea urchins|
|The wet labs allowed us to hold our collected animals overnight until the drive back to the VLM|
|Jessi and I enjoyed a behind-the-scenes tour of the NC Aquarium|
Species that we collected for the museum this year included white and purple urchins, lightning and channeled whelk, spider, stone, mud, and portunid crabs, spotted hake, and windowpane flounder. These species will soon be used in exhibits including the "crusty" crustacean tank and the touch tank.