"There is, one knows not what sweet mystery about this sea, whose gently aweful, stirrings seem to speak of some hidden soul beneath." - Herman Merville, author of Moby Dick, a novel about the saga of a great white whale.
Mural Painting by Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature School on Blog
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid (People's School on Air) with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday
Panel A - Creatures of the Deep
Panel B - Mangrove and Coral Reef
Full view of the mural (6ft x 30ft)
The Sea on a Wall
It is the sea of Ernest Hemingway, author of a prize-winning novel, The Old Man and the Sea, where a very old man caught the biggest fish in his life;
It is the sea of Moby Dick, a novel by Herman Melville, where a mad sea captain sought revenge against a great white whale, and lost at the end;
It is the sea of Rachel Carson, whose award-winning books The Silent Spring and The Sea Around Us started an environmental movement;
It is the sea of Charles Darwin that brought him to study Nature around the world for four years, and led him to formulate today's principle of evolution;
It is the sea Christopher Columbus crossed, umcharted and perilous, and with strong determination and deep conviction discovered the New World.
It is the sea that other great voyagers crossed in search of new land and treasures, and territories they conquered from indigenous inhabitants;
It is the sea where life began some two billion years ago, and the cradle of early life forms that evolved into both terrestial and aquatic forms;
It is the sea that covers three-quarter of the earth's surface, and whose depth puzzles man more than its breadth as to what lies deep, deep below;
It is the sea where land creatures went to live in the sea, and sea creatures became land dwellers, save the amphibians, certain fishes and reptiles;
It is the sea that makes our planet habitable, the prime mover of vital processes such as the water cycle the precursor of life, and link of land and sea;
It is the sea that provides the route of human migration and integration, of trade and culture, and the artery globalization in our postmodern times;
It is the sea that is the source of great inspiration to the Humanities, from painting (Turner's Storm at Sea) to music (Claude Debussy's La Mer);
It is the sea that steels and hones our character, humbles us, deepens of love and respect for one another, and brings us closer of our Creator.
A pair of Blue Whales (Balaenoptera musculus) representated in scale with humans.
The blue whale is a marine mammal belonging to the baleen whales. It feeds on krills (tiny shrimps) by the tons sieved by a filter-feeder system inside its mouth. At 30 metres in length and 180 tonnes or more in weight, it is the largest extant animal and is the heaviest known to have existed (bigger than the dinosaurs). Almost driven to extinction in the 20th century, the number has increase to about 5,000 to 12,000 blue whales worldwide today, thanks to various conservation programs.
Full view of the dreaded kraken, the giant octopus that nearly sank Captain Nemo's proto-submarine. The kraken and its kin rule the coral reef and is almost intelligent in human standard - crafty and master of mimicry and camouflage. Close to the kraken is the living fossil, Nautilus, after whom Captain Nemo named the first submarine.
Species of pelagic (free swimming) fish in schools are attracted at the photic zone where the sun nouirishes the seaweeds and planktons, so with many other marine organims that make up food chains and the food web. Sunlight passes through the water like a prism, the red and warm colors dominating the shallow depth while the blue and cool colors penetrate the deepest, up to a hundred meters. The photic zone is the richest in biodiversity in the open sea. .
Left: Kugtong or giant lapulapu awaits for potential preys at its domain. The female can reach a size of 100 kgs. Right: Coelacanth, a primitive fish thought to have become extinct 40 million years ago has been discovered in the craggy seafloor of Madagascar. Its fins and tails bear traces of the once bony appendages of its fossilized ancestors. Its secret of survival may lie on its isolation in the deep but studies show cooperation with other organisms like anemones, arthropods and echinoderms (such as red crabs and starfishes in the mural) has certainly played a major part.
Mangrove is nursery and abode of many organisms at the estuary, the zone where the river meets the sea. Here a juvenile shark rests in the entangled roots, trumpet fish lie vertically with the reeds. The root system is home to barnacles, mussels and other sessile organisms. Detritus is trapped here, so with silt that otherwise flows out to sea. It is the end of land and gateway to a vast marine environment, an intertidal zone. Bubbles from interchange of gases continuously evolve.