Our shared sea

Mechanisms of ecosystem change in the Western Channel

For the general public

Science On Board the Armorique ferry

Every summer, Marinexus organises demonstrations and events aboard the MV Armorique ferry that sails between Roscoff and Plymouth for the Brittany Ferries ferry company, one of the project’s partners. For 10 full days, representing 20 Channel-crossings, free activities are offered to ferry passengers to learn about the topics that the Marinexus project explores.

Using engaging displays, simple experiments and fun games, the Science On Board workshops demonstrate the impact humans have on the marine environment and explain the usefulness of the research done by the scientific partners of the project. The science workshops are intended primarily for 8 to 12 year-olds, but young people and adults who are interested in marine science and curious about the environmental and/or societal issues involved are also welcome!

The activities are presented in English and in French by two bilingual monitors and are offered for 3½ hours during each crossing, on the scheduled dates. Workshops offered on board during Summer 2010 include:

- The private life of algae

Knowledge of algal life cycles can provide a valuable tool for understanding the impact of environmental change. Through some simple experiments, discover how seaweed live and reproduce on our coasts.

 

- Species without borders

Modes of water transportation, commercial trade and aquaculture all pave the way for species introductions and are an integral part of the evolution of marine biodiversity. A detective game retraces the itinerary of marine species found in the English Channel today.

- The Channel under close watch

Researchers from Roscoff and Plymouth installed a ferry box on Brittany Ferries’ MV Amorique. What are the ferry box measurements used for? Why are these data so valuable?

Nature outings

These nature outings are coordinated by science outreach centres in Roscoff (Centre de Dècouverte des Algues) and in Plymouth (MBA, National Marine Aquarium).

Nature discovery tours

Get your feet wet in low-tide waters to discover the main seaweed species on our coasts and the countless small marine creatures.

These activities promote awareness of introduced species and the impact of climate change. In England, the general public (and schoolchildren) participate in species surveys that contribute to a national database.

The ‘Bioblitz’: 24-hour survey of the species that make up local biodiversity

In June 2010, the general public and schoolchildren participated in 24-hour species surveys around Plymouth. The objective of these surveys is to increase participants’ awareness of marine life, introduced species and climate change.

When art talks about science

The works exhibited in ferry terminal buildings portray to the public the scientific activities conducted as part of Marinexus and bridge art and science. Examples of art exhibitions: photography exhibits, works of art by schoolchildren or by the local population from neighbourhoods near the ferry terminal in Plymouth.

Conferences and debates

In France and in England, researchers hold conferences on topics in biology or in social sciences (economics, sociology, etc.) in relation to the impact of human activities on the marine environment.

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