Students will explore the diversity of Western Australia’s marine invertebrate animals.
This series of lessons is designed to complement the Sea Monkey Science activity run by the Department of Fisheries Community and Education Team. Students will learn about Artemia (also called brine shrimp or sea monkeys), their biology and why they
Students will learn about the different zones in the ocean and how organisms adapt to survive in these environments.
Students will study the most important marine habitats of Western Australia and their inhabitants.
Students will participate in a field excursion to investigate their local temperate or coral reef ecosystem.
Students will learn about the rocky intertidal zone, the organisms that live there and the challenges they face to survive. The presentations 'Inhabiting the Intertidal' and 'The Intertidal Zone: a reef platform' relate to this lesson plan.
Students will learn about their favourite marine creatures through pictures, photographs and real life samples of marine life found in Western Australian waters. Learning is reinforced through playing the bingo game to complete the lesson. The presentation 'Who am I?'
Students will study a reef platform, to identify organisms living on the platform, and provide reasoning as to their distribution.
Students learn about the importance of reproduction and explore how aquatic animals have a diverse range of reproductive strategies to increase the chances of survival for their species.
Students will use the book Sharing a Shell by Julia Donaldson to learn about rock pools and symbiotic relationships in the marine environment.
Students discover the process where fish otoliths are extracted and analysed to determine the age of the fish. Students will practice ageing fish using photographs of black bream sectioned otoliths and Australian herring whole otoliths.
Students discover the adaptations that fish have to help them survive in a wide range of aquatic environments. Students use this knowledge to design their own fish according to different types of habitats.
Students will demonstrate the importance of classification and understand that living things can be grouped according to identified characteristics.
Students will read the book Jinormous Jack by Josephine Barrymore and illustrated by Steve Dance, and explore the Ningaloo reef ecosystem and biology of whale sharks.
Students will investigate the needs of marine organisms and the role they play in marine ecosystems through a ‘musical chairs’ style game and constructing a habitat diorama.
Students will identify the key features of estuarine crocodiles and recognise how these features enable them to survive and adapt to the aquatic environment of the Kimberley region in Western Australia.
Students will learn about the features used to classify fish and compare them to features of other organisms. This lesson will focus closely on the external features of bony fish and how they help fish to survive underwater.
Students will learn what a dichotomous key is, why and how they are used, and attempt to create their own dichotomous keys.
Using the children’s book See Food, written by Guundie Kuchling, students will gain an understanding of how food chains, food webs and food pyramids work through illustrations and hands-on activities.
Students will construct a plankton model and simulate real life adaptations through using different types of materials. The aim is to construct a model that exhibits neutral buoyancy.
Through constructing a mangrove ecosystem storyboard, students will explore the function of mangrove ecosystems and how organisms depend on mangroves for food, shelter and lifecycle.
Students dissect a bony fish, identify the internal features and learn how these features enable the fish to survive.
This resource is an interactive image created in Thinglink, illustrating both the external and internal anatomy of an Australian herring. When viewing the image, hover over the icons to reveal extra information, images and video.
It's the A-Z of ocean organisms in Western Australia! Please note - printed copies of this poster are not yet available.
Explore the internal anatomy of a bony fish in this interactive poster.
Explore the external anatomy of a bony fish in this interactive poster.
This poster features the Life Cycle of the Western Rock Lobster with images of egg and larval stages.
A poster featuring the pathway of the Leeuwin current along the Western Australia coastline.
This poster features the life cycle of Barramundi with images of egg, larval and juvenile stages.
This poster highlights the impacts of oversupply of nutrients in estuaries.
Cobbler (Cnidoglanis macrocephalus), or catfish as they’re known outside Western Australia, are ‘endemic’ to Australia, meaning they’re only found here. They live in the southern half of the country, in coastal and estuarine waters up to about 30 metres deep.
Dangerous migrants – marine species that are introduced into environments in which they do not occur naturally can become deadly pests and represent one of the greatest threats to the world's oceans and biodiversity. This fact sheet identifies some of
Barramundi are a highly opportunistic species that dominate many tropical rivers. Delicious and thrilling to catch, they also live in both freshwater and saltwater, change sex and eat just about anything. Barramundi support substantial commercial, recreational and customary fisheries, as
Tailor are one of the most popular recreational fishing species along the west coast of Western Australia. Learn more about what fisheries' scientists know of tailor from more than 15 years worth of data collection on this species.
In southern Australia, the western blue groper is actually the largest carnivorous bony fish species found living on reefs, reaching a length of up to 1.7 m and a weight of up to 40 kg. Learn more about the biology
With their goggling, oddly placed eyes and their whisker-like pectoral filaments, threadfins are one of the weirder looking Western Australian fish species. Find out more about the biology of these weird looking fish and the commercial fishery in this fact
The unusual-looking sawfish family are a type of ray and are therefore related to sharks. Found in both marine and freshwater, these predatory fish derive their name from their long snouts lined with sharp points. An identification and general information
Colourful and protected by a strong carapace, the western rock lobster is one of the family of 'spiny' lobsters - and the target of WA's largest and most valuable fishery. This fact sheet explores the basic biology of the western rock lobster.
Of the 370-plus shark species in the world, more than 100 species live in Western Australian waters. This fact sheet provides general information about the biology of sharks, protected species and their vulnerability to overfishing.
Pink snapper are one of Western Australia's best-known and most sought-after fish. This fact sheet provides information on the widely distributed Pink Snapper (Pagrus auratus) and their biology.
The common blowfish or 'blowie', is abundant in estuaries and coastal waters throughout south-west Western Australia. While the blowfish will never win a popularity contest, it has an important role in marine ecosystems. The blowie is native to WA and
Baldchin groper, affectionately known as 'baldies', are greatly prized for their high-quality white flesh. Found only in WA, they are powerful swimmers and quite capable of breaking a fishing line as they dive for cover among rocks and coral. This
A staple fish for recreational and commercial fisheries in the south of the State, Australian herring are a popular and abundant species with a lifecycle dependent on prevailing currents.
A fact sheet providing information on Western Australian dhufish (Glaucosoma hebracium), a fish species endemic to the southern part of Western Australia. Its great size and superb eating qualities make this fish a Western Australian fishing icon.
Marron are the largest freshwater crayfish in Western Australia and the third largest freshwater crayfish on Earth. Find out more about the biology of these freshwater species in this fact sheet.
What is bycatch? The accidental capture of unwanted or non-targeted fish or other animals. This fact sheet outlines what is bycatch and what the fishing industry is doing to reduce it through bycatch reduction devices and modified fishing equipment.
This fact sheet provides information about blue swimmer crabs (Portunus pelagicus), a tropical crustacean species found in Western Australia mainly between Karratha and Dunsborough. Also known as a blue manna crab, it is an important recreational and commerical fishing species.
Black bream is one of the most important recreational and commercial fish species in the estuaries of south-Western Australia. A 'true' estuarine species, black bream complete their whole lifecycle within an estuary and are reliant on healthy rivers and estuaries
Fisheries Occasional Publication No. 57, March 2009. Fred E. Wells, Justin I. McDonald and John M. Huisman
Western Fisheries article by Steve Ireland, November 2011, pg. 52-53
Western Fisheries article by Ben Carlish, April 2010, pg. 48-51
This time a year ago, it seemed that good news awaited Western Asutralia's western rock lobster fishery. For the first time in eight years, climatic conditions were ideal for the strong recruitment of young lobster. But from August onwards, when
Most people interested in fishing in Western Australia know a fair bit about how we manage the stocks of western rock lobster, the fact that there is a 'season' for them, bag and size limits and that sort of thing.
Western Fisheries article by Michelle Dyer, December 2009, pg. 42-43
Western Fisheries article by Marcia van Zeller , November 2007, pg. 26-29
Western Fisheries article by C. Amalfi, Dec 2006, pg. 46-47
Western Fisheries article by C. Anderson, Jul 2010, pg. 38-41. Every time the Western Australian Museum, the Australian Institute of Marine Research, the CSIRO, WA government scientists or any of our universities surveys WA’s northern waters, their findings reinforce the
Western Fisheries article, Dec 2006, pg. 28-31
Western Fisheries article by Loisette Marsh, Jan 2008, pg. 31-34
Western Fisheries article, Jan 2008, pg. 48-49
Western Fisheries article by C. Amalfi, Dec 2005, pg. 8-13
Western Fisheries article by S. Ireland, Sept 2008, pg. 24-29
Humble though they may seem and occupying a low position in the marine food web, plankton are vital to the health not only of oceans, but also of the world’s atmospheric and terrestrial environments. Increasingly, plankton are also seen by
Driven by a love of the sea and fascination for its largest fish, the elusive whale shark, Australian naturalist Brad Norman has created a worldwide photo-identification system which enables ordinary people to assist in conserving Rhincodon typus. Story: Julian Cribb,
Western Fisheries article by M. van Zellar, Jan 2008, pg. 14-15
A high percentage of fish caught commercially spend some time in mangroves or are dependent on food chains which can be traced back to mangroves. With mangrove cover decreasing worldwide, Carmelo Amalfi reports on the state of Western Australia’s mangal
Western Fisheries article by S. Ireland, Jul 2006, pg. 12-17
Depending on the species, a fish’s skin can be quite stunning to behold – bright, shimmering and luminous. But just as with humans, fish skin is a large and complex organ, essential to survival. It may also hold the secret
It’s estimated that the world’s oceans, particularly the virtually unexplored depths, could hold tens of millions of undiscovered species. But with fewer and fewer taxonomists to analyse, describe and classify new species, we may never know the full extent of
Western Fisheries article by S. Ireland and M. de Graaf, Mar 2007, pg.12-17
Watch the flowers bloom around your home this spring, then imagine the same wonder of nature taking place underwater in fields of seagrasses within snorkelling distance of the Western Australian coast. The shallow coastal beds shared by other unique marine
Like human beings, fish are equipped with the senses of taste, touch, smell, hearing and sight – but they also have other ingenious ways of perceiving their watery world. Steve Ireland reports, Western Fisheries article by S. Ireland Nov 2006,
A Department of Fisheries Activity 1. Overview Students will learn why fisheries scientists dissect fish and what information can be found from examining the external and internal structure of a fish. Students then carry out their own fish dissection,
Build sandcastles with a difference – students will work in teams to build some popular marine creatures. They will learn about various body parts of the creature they build, and the functions of these parts. They will also learn about the local area where they are doing the activity and discuss some of the items they find washed up on the beach.
Referred to as the Indian Ocean Territories (IOTs), the remote location of Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands is the key to their unique and spectacular marine biodiversity.
At 5,500 kilometres, the Leeuwin Current is the world's longest continuous coastal or boundary current.
Learn all about Artemia more commonly known as sea monkeys. This presentation accompanies the Amazing Artemia Lesson Plan.
Explore the range of marine habitats found in Western Australia. This presentation is a resource related to the "Who Lives Where?" Lesson Plan.
Learn about the different types of corals and the organisms inhabiting coral reef environments.
Learn about the organisms that inhabit our intertidal rocky shores. This presentation is a resource related to the 'Inhabiting Intertidal Rocky Shores' and 'Excursion: Intertidal Investigation' lesson plans.
View photos of oganisms encountered in the game Ocean Bingo. This presentation is a resource related to the 'Ocean Bingo' Lesson Plan.
Sea urchins are covered with spines, which help them to move around, as well as protect them from predators. The spines break off when the urchin dies and the empty tests wash up on the beach. In this game, drag
Often mistaken for plants, sponges are actually animals! In this game, drag the labels to their correct position and learn more about these simple animals.
Snails belong to a group of organisms called gastropods, meaning stomach-foot animals. In this game, drag the labels to their correct position and learn more about these animals.
Sea anemones belong to a group of animals called anthozoans, meaning 'flower animals'. They have mouths surrounded by one or more rows of tentacles. In this game, correctly label the sea anemone and discover more about this pretty animal.