Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Southern California Water Resources II - NASA DEVELOP Summer 2018 @ JPL

Difficulty: 0

>> Harrison: Meet the grunion

[Ding sound]

California's wildest fish.

[sounds of surprise]

These little guys enjoy the beach just like anyone else: they surf down the swells, play

in the water, and dig in the sand.

Twice a month in the dead of night when the tides are highest, these silversides swim

in with the waves and begin a mating ritual unlike any other in the animal kingdom.

Dr. Karen Martin, known by many as the "Grunion Queen" [Ding sound] is the foremost expert

on the grunion and their abstract spawning behavior

>> Dr. Martin: The grunion lifecycle is a very interesting one because it depends on

the beaches, its not just in the water.

So during the grunion run the males and females are actually coming out of water and spawning

on the beach, leaving the eggs to incubate in the sand.

The eggs stay out of water for two weeks between one the high tide after a new moon or full

moon and the next following new or full moon.

Then, when the tides come back up again they'll wash those areas of the sand again and they'll

lift those eggs out and bring them into the ocean,

and that's when the eggs hatch and that's when they start their oceanic life cycle.

>> Harrison: But this way of life is being threatened

>> Dr. Martin: Conservation is a big issue with these animals because they are very vulnerable

as you can imagine, having their eggs on shore during the summer when

they are the most heavily used and in the most urbanized coastline in the world.

That's their habitat range and that is under a lot of human influences

from development, to recreation, to vehicles on the beaches, and all kinds of things.

>> Harrison: So, how DO we protect the grunion?

In order to answer that question, Dr. Martin and her associates are conducting extensive

biological research.

Yet even still, little is known of what happens to the grunion at the macro level.

>> Olivia: The biggest problems are we don't know a lot about their adult life.

So, we know all these wonderful things about them as embryos and even as hatchlings

but we don't really know what happens after that.

>> Harrison: The answer?

[Record Scratch]

Remote sensing

[drumming music]

With the power of NASA Earth Observations, the DEVELOP team used instruments on board

Aqua and other satellite platforms to explore the changing ocean environment

and form an understanding of how it may be affecting the grunion.

By looking at the spatial and temporal variation in chlorophyll levels, sea surface temperature,

ocean currents, and other measurements,

we can begin to get a glimpse into the complex lives of these amazing fish, and in doing

so, further the effort to preserve them as the wacky, fun, and incredibly unique members

of our coast that they are.

[rock music]

The Description of Southern California Water Resources II - NASA DEVELOP Summer 2018 @ JPL