Pacific Halibut lesson plans
The Pacific halibut (Hippoglossus stenolepis) is a popular fin fish that inhabits bays, estuaries, and the nearshore coast of Alaska. This white-fleshed, delicious fish supports both a commercial fishery and a personal use fishery in Alaska.
Check out the Pacific Halibut slide show and discover the life and times of Glacier Bay's halibut.
Pacific halibut are considered an apex predator in the ecosystems in which it lives. This fish eats other fish. Rarely is it eaten, with the exception of humans, some sharks and sea lions. Preliminary reports seem to show that the human fisheries are a serious pressure on this animal's ability to survive. Some studies show that marine preserves play a role in protecting the viability of animals that are heavily fished. Commercial fishing for Halibut in Glacier Bay is allowed only for those individuals who have qualified for a Lifetime Access Permit. This permit cannot be transferred - once these fishermen discontinue their fishing activities, commercial fishing for halibut in the bay will stop.
This unit invites students to learn more about this important fish. They will:
This unit is designed for grades 5-8. Activities and handouts usually will be written to upper elementary and lower middle school levels with some Extensions to adjust for the younger and older students.
Did You Know?
In 1899, an earthquake measuring 8.4 on the Richter Scale so shook the glaciers in Glacier Bay, the budding tourism industry nearly died. There was so much ice in the water from the shattered glaciers, visitors to Glacier Bay did not return to for over ten years.