Hurricanes & Stormy Seas

Hello Everyone,

Paul sent me an e-mail and asked me what happens to fish during a big storm. That’s a terrific question. Over Labor Day holiday, we had a tropical storm named Hermine park itself off the Jersey coast. It roared & roared, making huge waves and rip currents. Rip currents are very dangerous for swimmers and surfers because they are stronger than you are. They will pull you right out to sea. Then they let go. Someone caught in a strong current or undertow gets scared and then they try to fight but it is better to go with the flow until the strong pressure stops and then you can get back to the shore. I hope you won’t be foolish enough to go into the water when those kinds of conditions exist. Always obey the lifeguards.

For me, a storm is scary, too. The waters spin and spin like a washing machine. If I were to swim to the top of the ocean, I’d really get knocked around and probably get hurt. I have to dig in tight into the sand and hold on. The water can get saltier and heavier and some of my friends hide in a reef or patches of coral until it is safer to come out. The effects of a hurricane can be felt for days even after it moves away. I don’t like the big storms. Sometimes when it is not so pushy, it can be fun to ride the undersea currents. Just like you do on a raft or surfboard. We both have to be careful. The ocean is very powerful.

Take care, Paul.


Hi, My Name is Sandy

Hello Boys and Girls,

I’m Sandy the Flounder. I live under the sea. I am a character just like Nemo, the Clown Fish from movie fame. My character, that’s me of course, wants to blog with you. I want to tell you all about life in the sea and help you learn how important the oceans and sea life are to your world.

Let me start by telling you about myself. I am a summer flounder. There is another kind of flounder, my cousin, called the winter flounder. I will tell you about him in another blog post. I am a very popular fish on the Atlantic Coast of the United States and I have a great role to play in the fishing industry here. I am in the new book called Counting the Fish in the Sea by Carolyn Miller. You can find a real photograph of me in the book with a scientist from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science.

I am not the prettiest fish in the sea. Nemo has beautiful stripes, remember? I am a grey-brown color with lots of freckles. I think you should know that my underbelly is greyish white and my freckled top side helps me to hide in the sand. I have two eyes. What’s interesting is that when I was a baby they were one on each side of my head, but now that I am older, they are both on the same side, the top side. Isn’t that fascinating? I can see everything when I am laying in the sand.

I’m not a very large fish, a flattie for sure. We flounder are usually 15 to 22 inches in length and some can weigh as much as 25 pounds. (Now that’s a FATTIE, not a FLATTIE) Sometimes bullies call me a ‘doormat.’ I’m dealing with that pretty well because I am very slippery and fast. I can live to be 20 years old…that’s really old in fish years.

Well it is time to get dinner, so I must say good-bye for now. Please ask me any questions you want to know about sea creatures and I will do my best to answer them for you. Tell me something about yourself as well. I’d love to hear from you.