Guest post from a special guest: Marcy Fiorentino, a 4th grader in New Jersey and one of reTURN the Favor’s younger volunteers.
“Listen everyone! We are giving out beach permits in one week, April 15th. Please come pick up your permit on that day at Fortescue Beach. We want everyone to help save the horseshoe crabs!” said Miss Laura, the chief organizer of the horseshoe crab rescue program.Aqua was a good friend of Miss Laura’s and was listening to the announcement at the meeting of the horseshoe crab rescue volunteers. Aqua was a sweet and curious girl. But Aqua had a secret. She was an ocean fairy! A lot of people have heard of mermaids, but an ocean fairy is different. An ocean fairy is a crossover between a mermaid and a fairy, looks human, and does not have a tail or wings. They can breathe in water, are great swimmers, and have a magic power. Aqua’s magic power is that she gets a warning when a horseshoe crab flips over on the beach and can’t survive without being flipped over. She can teleport to the stranded horseshoe crabs and flip them over to save them!
Aqua helped Miss. Laura clean up after the meeting. All of the sudden, Aqua got a bad feeling. Her head started to feel dizzy. She knew that this meant that horseshoe crabs were in danger! She teleported to Fortescue Beach. She found about 100 horseshoe crabs stranded on the beach! She ran from horseshoe crab to horseshoe crab, flipping them over.
Aqua went back to meet Miss Laura. She told Miss Laura that the horseshoe crabs were found at Fortescue Beach and were starting their mating season earlier than expected. Usually the mating season is May and June. This timing is important because that is when the Red Knots stop on the beaches in the Delaware Bay during their migration to fill up on horseshoe crab eggs before completing their journey. Miss Laura sent out an email to all the horseshoe crab rescue volunteers to tell them to be looking out for the horseshoe crabs.
Then Aqua got another signal from the horseshoe crabs. When she teleported, she saw that they were being taken to labs to have their blue blood harvested for making medicine safe for people. She saw they were being brought back to the ocean. Aqua swam with the horseshoe crabs to make sure they felt okay. She checked all their eyes on each one, especially their two main compound eyes. Compound eyes are eyes that have many lenses. Horseshoe crabs have about 1000 lenses in each compound eye. They are less accurate than human eyes. It’s like looking at a pixelated photo from the horseshoe crabs’ view. These eyes help them see to mate, so they are very important.
Horseshoe crabs are being heroes for people and Red Knots, and we volunteers are being heroes for the horseshoe crabs!
Aqua went back to Miss Laura’s house and told her that she had a thought. Her thought was this: Horseshoe crabs are being heroes for people and Red Knots, and we volunteers are being heroes for the horseshoe crabs! Horseshoe crabs are special. The people who help the horseshoe crabs survive are special, too!