YEAR 7 King’s Ely Junior students headed to the Norfolk Coast for an exciting Ecology and Geography trip on June 12th.

For the Geography element, the pupils investigated what makes Hunstanton a special place 1) for residents and 2) for visitors. They found the latter easier to find for their questionnaires as the warm weather had brought people from hundreds of miles away.

The students enjoyed the chance to explore the town and consider the extent to which the shops and services were more aimed at visitors than residents (who are outnumbered by tourists in the summer months). They enjoyed speaking to members of the public to ask their opinions of the town.

They also had the chance to see some of the coastal landforms they had studied earlier in the year, including the famous striped cliffs of Hunstanton, and the sandy beaches. They also learned about the impact of the floods of 1953.

The Year 7 cohort also took the opportunity of the great beach at Hunstanton to study a seaside habitat dominated by a twice daily tidal system. They were introduced to the use of a line transect, following a 50m measuring tape towards the outgoing sea in order to discover both the type of habitat available and the organisms that were adapted to live there.

“Quadrats” were laid and investigated at 5m intervals in order to establish the consistency of some conditions and the variability of others. It quickly became apparent that the pH and temperature of the sea water largely remained constant making it easier for the living organisms to adapt but in contrast the substratum variability provided for different habitat types based mainly on either solid rock or sand.

Knowledge gained from this experience will help in the understanding of how food webs are established and develop under the prevailing conditions. This will be used in the production of competitive organism ‘Top Trump Cards’ during lesson subsequent lessons at school.

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