Living Fossil by Citron / CC BY-SA 3.0

ExQUIZite Seaweek

Get ready to sail the seven seas with this edition’s quiz

Celebrating Seaweek 2021, we ask you to plumb the depths of your knowledge of all things seaworthy. There are 5 rounds, with each question worth 1 point, for a total of 35 points. Good luck and just keep swimming!

Ancient oceans

Living Fossil — Image by: Citron / CC BY-SA 3.0
  1. What is the name of this ‘living fossil’, first caught as a live specimen in South African waters in 1938?
  2. Kaiwhekea katiki is the name given to which ancient marine reptile discovered at Shag Point in the Moeraki area?
  3. What was the name of the giant ocean surrounding the supercontinent Pangaea around 290-240 million years ago?
  4. Invertebrate, whale, and dolphin fossils are on display in the Vanished World Centre located in which North Otago town?
  5. What is the name of the ancient sea creatures resembling a wood louse, which are often found as fossils?

Deep blue culture

Seriously big wave — Image by: Hokusai
  1. Which iconic Japanese artist created this image of ocean waves?
  2. What was the name of the boat captained by Quint in the classic movie Jaws?
  3. Famous oceanographer Bob Ballard, who discovered the wreck of the Titanic, appeared at the end of each episode during the first season of which 90s sea-faring TV show?
  4. These lines are from which poem, written by which poet?
Water, water, every where,
And all the boards did shrink;
Water, water, every where,
Nor any drop to drink.

5. The mythological selkies shed the skin of which marine animal to take human form?
6. What is the name and address that Marlin and Dory are searching for in Finding Nemo?
7. What was the name of the ship sunk on its return from dropping off the atomic bomb           during WWII?
8. “Call me Ishmael” is the opening line for what book, by which author?

Nautical numbers

Albert Ross — Image by: Pixabay
  1. Albatross have been observed to fly around the world in how many days?
  2. How far down (in km) does the deepest known point in the ocean - the Mariana Trench - stretch?
  3. How hot (in degrees Celsius) can the water spewing out of hydrothermal vents in the sea floor get?
  4. How many metric tonnes of krill is the blue whale estimated to eat each day - .036, .36, 3.6, or 36?
  5. The largest ocean-dwelling bony fish can grow up to 8m long - what is it called?
  6. How many individual reefs make up the Great Barrier Reef - 30, 300, 3000, or 30000?
  7. What percentage of the mass of an iceberg made entirely from ice is visible above the water?
  8. Which sea is ten times saltier than the ocean?

Sea creatures

What a star! — Image by: Pixabay
  1. Sea urchins, starfish and sea cucumbers are part of which group of marine invertebrates whose name means ‘hedgehog skin’ in Greek?
  2. Which of these have external ears - true seals or sea lions?
  3. What is the name of the fatty pocket in the heads of cetaceans like dolphins that helps them to make click sounds?
  4. What are the microscopic sea creatures known as water bears also called?
  5. What is the world’s largest marine turtle?
  6. What group of islands are home to the only marine iguana?
  7. Which male sea creatures have a brood pouch from which they give birth?
  8. Which shark can move easily between fresh and saltwater, and vice versa?

Davy Jones’s general knowledge

Back to school — Image by: Pixabay
  1. What does SCUBA stand for?
  2. What is the more common name for the decompression sickness that affects divers who surface too quickly?
  3. What name is given to the well-known group of large sea stacks found along the Aussie coast, southwest of Melbourne?
  4. Name three of the five depth zones in the ocean.
  5. What sea stretches from Egypt to Yemen?
  6. What ocean-based weather event takes place around Christmas every few years?


Image credits

· Living Fossil 1938: Citron / CC BY-SA 3.0
· All other images from Pixabay

Sources (all available from Dunedin Public Libraries)

· Ocean Animals: The Weirdest, Smartest and Sneakiest Sea Creatures by Blake Chapman
· DK Eyewitness Ocean by Dr Miranda MacQuilty
· Oceans: A Visual Guide by Stephen Hutchinson and Lawrence E Hawkins
· Blue Planet II: A New World of Hidden Depths by James Honeyborne and Mark Brownlow
· Blowfish’s Oceanopedia by Tom Hird
· Oceans in 30 Seconds by Jen Green
· DK Ocean: The Definitive Guide