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Archive for March, 2014

How Coral Size Influences Fish Size

Many fish find a coral colony to host in, living their whole life in that same coral. They must pick carefully, however, for the shape and size of the coral will determine how the fish will grow. Valeska UphamFor my fisheries and aquatic science PhD I am working on how to tank raise urchins and […]

WACS cruise track superimposed on maps of satellite-derived chlorophyll-a concenatrtions using the Aqua Modis satellite.

A break-up in the relationship between organic carbon in sea spray and chlorophyll-a concentrations

The transfer of organic matter from the surface sea water to sea spray aerosols appears constant despite the concentration of chlorophyll-a. This could suggest that satellite-derived estimates of organic matter in sea spray are inaccurate in the open ocean Kari St.LaurentI received a Ph.D. in oceanography in 2014 from the Graduate School of Oceanography (URI) […]

You Are What Your Fish Eats: how an invasive seaweed is contributing to the decline in nutritional value of commercial fish

Invasive species are known to be harmful to native species, biodiversity, and ecosystem function. But recent research has shown that certain invasive species may be affecting the nutritional quality of your food! Gordon OberPostdoctoral Researcher, Claremont McKenna College I am currently a postdoc at Keck Sciences, Claremont McKenna College. I work with Dr. Sarah Gilman, […]

Unlocking the secrets of the Kameni Islands in Santorini, Greece

In Geology 101, professors aim to teach the overarching concept that the present is the key to the past. In other words, natural processes that happen in the modern world would have functioned the same way in the distant geologic past. For volcanologists, this means that volcanic events occurring now can help interpret what happened […]

Rapid Reductions in North Atlantic Deep Water during the Peak of the Last Interglacial Period

North Atlantic deep water forms primarily in more extreme northern latitudes due to the colder, saltier water with a higher density. When this flow of water goes south it mixes with the cold Antarctic water and then redistributes into other parts of the world. As high latitude warming and ocean refreshing reduce water density, North […]

Hello Glaciers, Goodbye Winds!

With the intensification of glaciation in the northern hemisphere approximately 2.7 million years ago, the prominent westerly wind belts responded by shifting towards the equator based on evidence from sediment cores. But how exactly are scientists able to determine the position of the winds millions of years ago? The answer lies in proxies! Brian CaccioppoliI […]

Wrecked in New Zealand

There are well document reports recording the exploration of New Zealand and the South Pacific Ocean by Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1642 and British Captain James Cook in 1768. During the 125 years between these two voyages, however, there is speculation that there may have been additional explorers who visited the area. In 1982 […]

Sea sponges soak up pollutants

Biomonitoring can be a great tool for measuring pollutants in marine ecosystems, but not all organisms accumulate chemicals equally. The sun sponge is being tested as a new and improved bioindicator for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Zoe RugeI have a M.S. from the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography, previously working with Dr. […]

From Your Sofa to the Sea

Oceanographers from Spain have measured several commonly used (and potentially harmful) organophosphate ester flame retardants in the air over the Mediterranean and Black Seas. What does it mean for the environment? We’re only just beginning to find out. Carrie McDonoughI am the founder of oceanbites, and a postdoctoral fellow in the Higgins Lab at Colorado […]

The far-reaching benefits of marine reserves

It can actually work! A recent multidisciplinary study combining genetics and modeling conducted in the marine protected area of Torre Guaceto, Italy shows how effective marine reserves can be. Catarina SilvaHi! I am a PhD candidate at Victoria University of Wellington. I study the genetic structure of organisms and how the environment influences genetics. Check […]

Sticking to it – Sediments act as a “sink” for pollution

POPs, or persistent organic pollutants, are manmade chemicals that don’t break down in the environment and are found nearly everywhere around the planet. In this study, scientists traveled to central Chile to look at a couple of different POPs accumulating in sediments from an estuary. Erin MarkhamErin received her B.S. in Environmental Science from the […]

Fatter Whales Float Better

North Atlantic right whales are giant marine mammals that rely on their blubber to store energy, stay warm, and float. Their blubber thickness is dependent on nutrition and if they are unable to satisfy their nutritional demands then the consequences can influence how efficiently they dive, and, in the long term, may restrict a population’s […]

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