Birdsong discovers The Amazing World of Plankton
Dear Ocean-Loving Friends,
When I am out at sea observing marine animals, I often wonder what’s going on in the ocean that I can’t see. Imagine my delight as I began to learn about plankton, the countless tiny living things that are floating and drifting in the world’s oceans and other bodies of water. These tiny organisms, most of which are too small to be seen without a powerful microscope, include plants (phytoplankton) and animals (zooplankton). Plankton are the foundation of the food chain that supports fish and other sea creatures—and the people who eat them. Phytoplankton also provides us with over 50% of the oxygen we breathe. Like all plants, they photosynthesize – that is, they use sunlight and carbon dioxide to make food. A byproduct of photosynthesis is oxygen; and we are breathing the oxygen produced by plankton in every breath we take – no matter where on the Earth we live.
If I had known a few years ago what I know now about the important relationship between plankton and all ocean life, I would have included a verse about it in my song “Everything Is Connected” from my CD EVERYTHING IS CONNECTED and Other Animal Songs for Kids. Fortunately, it’s never too late to write more verses to a song; and I invite you listen to “Everything Is Connected” and perhaps write your own verse about plankton. In the meantime, check out this TED-Ed video “The Secret Life of Plankton” and the resources listed below to learn about the amazing, mostly unseen, world of plankton.
Love what I’m learning about the ocean,
- More Resources:
-Ask a Biologist – asu.edu/Explore Plankton
-Children of the Earth/Phytoplankton
-10 Facts About Plankton/YouTube
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