Students go out to sea

Talitha WolfeAlbany Advertiser

Sailing on international waters is not something many adults, let alone children, can claim, but six Albany Primary School students headed for the high seas last Friday for the trip of a lifetime.

Ten-year-olds Harriet Martin, Jack Byatt, Nicky Wright, Mackenzie Daries-Reid and Kaidyn Ham, and Ollie Kellow-Andersson, 11, were selected from 40 students to be young pioneers and sail to the Bremer Canyon with Naturaliste Charters’ Bremer Canyon Killer Whale Expeditions.

Nicky Wright searches for killer whales.
Camera IconNicky Wright searches for killer whales. Credit: bany Advertiser

The adventure began when Kirsty Alexander of Naturaliste Charters visited students to speak about the Bremer Bay killer whales.

The idea then spiralled into a six-month project in which Year 5 and 6 students applied for the opportunity to experience the unique marine wildlife hotspot.

Each student presented an application to a panel of three judges and science teacher Stephen Murray said the process had been rewarding.

Albany Primary School students Mackenzie Daries-Reid, 10, Ollie Kellow-Andersson, 11, and Harriet Martin, Nicky Wright and Jack Byatt, all 10, with part of Nicky's submission for the expedition.
Camera IconAlbany Primary School students Mackenzie Daries-Reid, 10, Ollie Kellow-Andersson, 11, and Harriet Martin, Nicky Wright and Jack Byatt, all 10, with part of Nicky's submission for the expedition. Credit: Advertiser, Talitha Wolfe

“It has been a very intense, but we think in the end very gratifying, learning experience,” Mr Murray said.

“They had to handle a seriously sized swell and they had to handle going to the continental shelf, which not many kids their age or even adults will have done.

Kaidyn Ham, 10.
Camera IconKaidyn Ham, 10. Credit: any Advertiser

“As an adult you see a whole world view, you’ve got different things in mind such as persistence and reliance learning, and social engagement skills.

“They seem to have had a very fun but definitely challenging time … but also they’ve had lots of laughs, lots of sleeping, and some very exciting spottings of the wildlife out there.”

Pilot whales
Camera IconPilot whales Credit: Talitha Wolfe Albany Advertiser

The students battled five metre swells, and although they missed out on seeing killer whales, were rewarded by seeing a pod of pilot whales swimming alongside the boat, a curious sunfish and several shearwaters and albatrosses.

Picture: Talitha Wolfe Albany Advertiser
Camera IconPicture: Talitha Wolfe Albany Advertiser Credit: Albany Advertiser

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