Surf and Turf, Aussie Style

Authored by:
Cassidy Duran

Cassidy Duran

Over the last week, participants in Perth have been learning on their feet -- and having a great time doing it!

The week started with a trip to Perth Zoo, where we learned about Steve, the species-saving numbat, and met a lovely snake named Wendy.

Learning about some of the resident animals at Perth Zoo
Learning about some of the resident animals at Perth Zoo.

Next up was a visit to the Department of Fisheries where students got hands-on in the lab and later entered into a cut-throat "fishing" exercise that helped them see first-hand how important regulation is to keeping our aquatic ecosystems healthy and sustainable.

Paris really enjoys lab activities.

After a pretty intensive morning, we wandered through the Aquarium of Western Australia (AQWA) for a self-guided tour. The underwater viewing rooms and touchable shark pool were big hits that afternoon.

Trying to catch a shark takes a lot of patience and a good sense of humor.

The next day, our group boarded a bus south to do coastal restoration with You wouldn't think picking up rubbish and pulling weeds would be as entertaining as it was, but this group approaches everything with a positive attitude and jumped right in for the challenge. At the end of a long day, it was incredibly rewarding for our participants to look at the impact they made today and know that the benefits of today will last long after we have left. The popular vote said this was one of the favorite days so far.  It doesn't hurt when you have a view like Rockingham.

They make this look easy.

No trip to Australia would be complete without some time in the sea, so on Friday, we headed to Leighton Beach for a surf lesson with some local legends.  I can't say we were pros by the time we got out of the water, but we definitely worked up an appetite for a beach-side barbeque afterward!

Fun in the sun!

With an already jam-packed week, we still managed to fit in a little relaxation and downtime in Perth over the weekend that included checking out the city centre, strolling through Stirling Gardens and past parliamentary buildings, visiting the iconic Swan Bell Tower, finding a hidden playground, and enjoying dinner on Elizabeth Quay.

Enjoying Perth CBD

Up next we have student conservation presentations and a highly anticipated trip to Rottnest Island... stay tuned!

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