Predator-Prey was written for the 2020 Regional Association for Research in the Gulf of of Maine Symposium. The piece explores six instances of predation in the Gulf of Maine with each movement taking us up a step in the food chain.
I. A school of fish swim through the open water. They take in water and filter it out through gill rakers finding the plankton within. They continue on searching for more food.
II. As the school continues to swim, a larger fish approaches. It picks a smaller member of the school and after a brief struggle swallows it. It is sated, it moves on letting the rest of the school swim away.
III. On the bottom, a starfish works to pry open a clam. It is hard, slow work, but once done the clam is enveloped.
IV. A large cormorant gracefully flies overhead spotting the large fish making the hunter the hunted. The first bout is a miss, the second attempt is a capture. The birds flies towards the horizon.
V. A harbor seal is swimming gracefully, little does it know a predator is lurking. A great white shark is closing, guided by smell. It springs it’s attack, the seal uses speed and flexibility to evade. The seal swims away.
VI. Unusual, but not unfamiliar sounds approach, a boat. The school of fish knows it must move. They are overtaken, tossed, tangled, and pulled up into the net. The remains of the school swim on.