Please Login or Register

You are here: Home » Education » For Secondary Schools » Biology » Activities and Marine Species Information for Secondary Schools

Activities and Marine Species Information for Secondary Schools


How to build a plankton net


1x knee-high stocking, 1m of string, 8cm of wire, 1 x  small plastic jar and a pair of scissors.


1. Feed the wire into the hem at the top of the stocking.

2. Cut about 10cm of the string off and tie one end to the ring of wire.  Tie the other end to the opposite side of the wire ring.

3. Repeat step 2 but tie as far apart around the wire ring from the first string so that when you hold the stocking up with your finger using the two strings the strings will meet on your finger and form a cross.

4.Cut 60cm of string and tie it to the point where the first two pieces of string meet.  This is what you will tow you plankton net with.

5. Cut the end off the stocking - enough so that the resulting hole is about the same diameter as the jar opening.

6. Use the remainding string to tie the jar to the cut end of the stocking.  Tie it tight otherwise you plankton will escape!

7. Now you can go fishing for plankton.  The best way to do this is to go to a beach at dusk and walk through the water along the beach towing your little plankton net behind you!  Do this for as long as possible (half an hour would be great)!

8.  Back at school, look at your plankton under a microscope!



How to catch tuna in the classroom!

Click here for a hands on activity about fishing and by-catch



How many trees?   Ecological footprint

How many hectares of trees does NZ need (so that energy you use from being in a car or flying in a plane or even from the meat you eat) to counteract the gases which are produced by your energy usage.  The number of hectares is called your Ecological Footprint.  Click here to calculate your Ecological Footprint.



 Marine Species Information

 Intertidal Species

Use this document to help with your Rocky Shore study.  It covers information about several rocky shore species and their adaptations.  Click here to download Info on Rocky Shore species.



Click here to find out what Marine biodiversity is!

Click here to download a document on The Summary of Biodiversity in NZ Seas.  This document covers several species so maybe useful for your research assessment or assignment.  Good luck!


Traditionally Maori Fished Species

Click here to go to a weblink about which species the Maori fished and how they fished and stored their catch.


 Various Subtidal (live below low tide mark) Species

 Click here for factsheets on various marine species including blue cod, crayfish and seahorses.


 Biology of Crayfish, Snapper, Hoki and Orange Roughy

Click here for information on the biology of crayfish

Click here for information on the biology of snapper

Click here for information on the biology of hoki

Click here for information on the biology of orange roughy