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Ocean Stewardship

Albatross Bolusesbolus

Thank you for your interest in inspiring ocean stewardship through the Winged Ambassadors Education Partnership. Kure Atoll Conservancy, State of Hawaii DLNR-DOFAW, Oikonos Ecosystem Knowledge, and Hawai‘i Pacific University have teamed up to offer free boluses as a valuable teaching resource.

We have a limited number of boluses available for educators. Please email Ilana Nimz at for more information. 

Through the hard work and dedication of volunteer biologists, we are able to provide a hands-on learning tool for students. Currently field biologists are collecting boluses from two albatross breeding colonies in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, Kure and Midway Atolls.

When available, we can provide 5 boluses for dissection in the classroom. We have also created a “virtual bolus dissection” using detailed professional images available in both printable and projectable formats that can be found using the Winged Ambassadors – Ocean Literacy through the Eyes of Albatross curriculum from Oikonos, NOAA and HPU.

As boluses are a limited resource, we cannot distribute more than 5 boluses for your education activities. We encourage you to share the boluses between students, classes, and teachers and conduct the activities in student groups (3-4) to make the most of this very limited material. You can also reuse boluses by re-combining the contents and saving them in jars. We also recommend keeping one or two boluses intact, not dissected, as an example of the mass a chick must regurgitate.

To request boluses,

Boluses are currently available in limited quantities for eligible educators. For further information on requesting boluses, or other inquiries about the Winged Ambassadors curriculum, please email Ilana Nimz at

Submitting Your Bolus Data 

Starting in 2021, Oikonos encourages bolus users submit data from their class dissection activity to our new web portal:
The goal of this site is for students to participate in scientific data collection and encourage collaborative research and data sharing between classrooms dissecting boluses . You will find dissection activity instructions, bolus ID guides, the standardized data collection sheet, the data submission form (that is compatible with the data collection sheet), and data collected by other classes. 

More Marine Debris Resources for Teachers

Latest Enhancements (2020):

  • Aligned with Next Generation Science & Common Core Standards.
  • Distance learning adaptations including fillable PDFs and tips to adjust lessons for the digital classroom
  • Improved bolus handouts with interactive links
  • Tracking data provided for Google Earth mapping.

A new and exciting resource to include in your lesson plan is the Cornell University albatross camera. On the South Island of New Zealand, Southern Royal albatrosses at the Tairoa Head seabird colony are being monitored by a live remote camera so their activities can be shared with the world!

Kokua Hawaii Foundation resources are especially helpful to school groups and others interested in learning more about reducing single-use plastics on campus and at home.

Algalita Marine Research and Education has created Debris Science Investigation Kits which are available by reservation. These kits are recommended for students in grades 6-12. Scroll down on the educators page to request a kit.

The NOAA Marine Debris Program also has tool kits available to conduct marine debris surveys and submit data to a national database.

Our partners at US Fish and Wildlife service have additional resources related to boluses, marine debris and Midway Atoll, the world’s largest Laysan Albatross colony.

Mapping tool and information about the marine debris hot spots in the Main Hawaiian Islands. A collaboration between the Division of Aquatic Resources, NOAA’s Marine Debris Program, Resource Mapping Hawai’i, and Hawai’i Coral Reef Initiative

The Integrated Arts Marine Debris Curriculum from Washed Ashore. These free lessons meet National Core Standards for Art, Language Art, Social Studies and Science.

Please help to support the ongoing efforts to provide free resources. Thank you!

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For questions or problems with donation processing, contact Trinidad Mena: or (808) 228-4463