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Archive for June, 2015

Untangling the issues with longline fishing

Longline fishing has been used for decades as a way to catch large amounts of commercial fish. Though effective in capturing target fish, longlines unintentionally snag and kill millions of other marine species. Aside from being caught themselves, marine mammals (i.e. dolphins and killer whales) may eat target fish off the hooks and destroy fishing […]

Prokaryotes are prokaryotes: a sneak peak at the microbial oceans courtesy DNA  

Scientists have sequenced the microbial diversity of the world’s oceans unlocking the secrets of the microbes that run our planet. Abrahim El GamalAbrahim is a PhD student at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego where he studies marine chemical biology.

Seeing with skin: the secret to octopus camouflage

Capable of blending into the environment in a matter of seconds, the octopus in no normal sea creature. But just how is the octopus able to disguise itself so flawlessly? Researchers reveal that these cephalopods may be able to “see” with their skin! Ashley MarranzinoI received my Master’s degree from the University of Rhode Island […]

Sponges Out of Control: Another Effect of Overfishing

When you think about threats to coral reefs, you don’t think “Sponges!”, do you? But you might come up with “overfishing.” While the overfishing of herbivorous (algae-eating) species has grabbed attention, we may need to consider the loss of sponge-eating fish too. Check out some new research that shows an increase in sponge-coral interactions where […]

Stop, collaborate and listen: decision-oriented data collection improves marine conservation

Managers often need specific information in order to best preserve a particular marine resource. This paper details a step-wise approach that decision-makers and other stakeholders can use to prioritize scientific and conservation efforts that promote sustainability. Using this triage approach will result in a more transparent decision-making process and focus scientific assessments, providing better information […]

Path of Corrosion: How Scientists Modeled Ancient Sea-Floor Acidity

Today, we see a rapid release of CO2 to the atmosphere associated with climate change. The same was true 55 million years ago during the PETM, a time when – sediment records show – there was pervasive carbonate dissolution along the sea floor. But it was not the same pattern everywhere. Scientists attempt to model […]

Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2015 Highlights

Capitol Hill Ocean Week (CHOW) is an annual event in Washington, D.C. that brings together a wide range of leaders a to discuss ocean science, policy and management. In case you missed it, read this for highlights! Megan ChenI graduated with a Masters of Coastal & Marine Management from the University of Akureyri in Iceland, […]

The True Value of Fish Nurseries

Estuaries (where freshwater and seawater mix) are used as nursery grounds to raise many species of young fish around the world. The authors of a new paper in Estuaries and Coasts describe how our currently oversimplified way of determining the value of these ecosystems is inadequate. Derrick AlcottDerrick is pursuing a Ph.D. in the Organismic […]

Indian Ocean keeps the Pacific cool

Inter-ocean heat transport through Indonesia’s archipelago offloads excess heat from the tropical Pacific to the Indian Ocean. Findings emphasize the importance of ocean heat transport in solving Earth’s energy imbalance. Hillary ScannellHillary received her MS in oceanography from the University of Maine in 2014 and works in the Ecosystem Modeling Lab at the Gulf of […]

Do fish communities need natural shorelines, or are artificial structures ok?

Due to coastal development and natural erosion, shoreline fish communities are stressed. Several versions of artificial structures have been built to help mimic natural shoreline habitats, but are they all equally helping to conserve the fish species, or are some better than others? Valeska UphamFor my fisheries and aquatic science PhD I am working on […]

Marine microbial activity poses restrictions on cloud formation

Researchers from Scripps Institute of Oceanography have found that humble heterotrophic bacteria in the surface waters of the ocean can have far reaching impacts – extending beyond the typical marine microbial system and into the atmosphere to affect how clouds are formed. Irvin HuangA recent convert to oceanography, I’m studying under Dr. Anne McElroy at […]

There is a need for healthy parrotfish to maintain the reef islands

When you think of sediment erosion and island building physical processes and volcanism may come to mind. Well, you may be pleased to learn that fish build islands too, and get this- they do it with material they erode! However, the eco-geological relationship of island formation and sustainability with biology is not well quantified. This […]

It’s getting warm, should I migrate now?

Leatherback turtles are nesting later due to warming sea surface temperatures at their foraging grounds, raising questions on how climate change will affect turtle migrations in the future. Kari St.LaurentI received a Ph.D. in oceanography in 2014 from the Graduate School of Oceanography (URI) and am finishing up a post-doc at the University of Maryland […]

Consummate Corals: resilience in an acidifying ocean

Gloom and doom has been the dominant message associated with climate change. However, it is important to remember that when faced with change, not all species and ecosystems are created equal. Recently, researchers have found that several species of cold-water corals are quite resilient to ocean acidification. Gordon OberPostdoctoral Researcher, Claremont McKenna College I am […]

Seeing in the dark: zooplankton in Arctic winter.

Winter nights are very long and dark near the poles. How well can krill and other zooplankton see to get around? Sarah GiltzI am a doctoral candidate in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Tulane University. My research focuses on the larval dispersal and development of the blue crab in the Gulf of Mexico. When not […]

Gulls in Argentina bully whales into changing their behavior

Whales are a lot like people: if something’s annoying or hurting you, you’ll go out of your way to avoid it, and whales do the same thing. This study out of Argentina focuses on how gull attacks have changed the way southern right whales breathe. Read on to find out what they do differently! Erin […]

Satellites Agree: Sea Level Rise Accelerated Over Last Decade

Satellite altimetry: talk about a game-changer! Measurement of the oceans’ sea surface height by satellite altimetry has revolutionized the study of sea level rise. But even the most precise measurements are prone to error, which can drastically impair our understanding of sea level rise. Brian CaccioppoliI am a recent graduate (Dec. 2015) from the University […]

North Sea fish stick to warming shallows rather than cooling off at depth

Models based on historical survey data indicate that with long term warming trends, fish distributions in the North Sea will remain at nearly the same depths while abundances across species may change considerably. Lis HendersonI am studying for my doctoral degree at the Stony Brook University School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences. My research addresses […]

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  • by oceanbites 2 weeks ago
    Happy Earth Day! Take some time today to do something for the planet and appreciate the ocean, which covers 71% of the Earth’s surface.  #EarthDay   #OceanAppreciation   #Oceanbites   #CoastalVibes   #CoastalRI 
  • by oceanbites 1 month ago
    Not all outdoor science is fieldwork. Some of the best days in the lab can be setting up experiments, especially when you get to do it outdoors. It’s an exciting mix of problem solving, precision, preparation, and teamwork. Here is
  • by oceanbites 2 months ago
    Being on a research cruise is a unique experience with the open water, 12-hour working shifts, and close quarters, but there are some familiar practices too. Here Diana is filtering seawater to gather chlorophyll for analysis, the same process on
  • by oceanbites 3 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #oceanbites  we are featuring Hannah Collins  @hannahh_irene  Hannah works with marine suspension feeding bivalves and microplastics, investigating whether ingesting microplastics causes changes to the gut microbial community or gut tissues. She hopes to keep working
  • by oceanbites 4 months ago
    Leveling up - did you know that crabs have a larval phase? These are both porcelain crabs, but the one on the right is the earlier stage. It’s massive spine makes it both difficult to eat and quite conspicuous in
  • by oceanbites 4 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Cierra Braga. Cierra works ultraviolet c (UVC) to discover how this light can be used to combat biofouling, or the growth of living things, on the hulls of ships. Here, you
  • by oceanbites 4 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Elena Gadoutsis  @haysailor  These photos feature her “favorite marine research so far: From surveying tropical coral reefs, photographing dolphins and whales, and growing my own algae to expose it to different
  • by oceanbites 5 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on Oceanbites we are featuring Eliza Oldach. According to Ellie, “I study coastal communities, and try to understand the policies and decisions and interactions and adaptations that communities use to navigate an ever-changing world. Most of
  • by oceanbites 5 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Jiwoon Park with a little photographic help from Ryan Tabata at the University of Hawaii. When asked about her research, Jiwoon wrote “Just like we need vitamins and minerals to stay
  • by oceanbites 5 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #Oceanbites  we are featuring  @riley_henning  According to Riley, ”I am interested in studying small things that make a big impact in the ocean. Right now for my master's research at the University of San Diego,
  • by oceanbites 5 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Gabby Stedman. Gabby is interested in interested in understanding how many species of small-bodied animals there are in the deep-sea and where they live so we can better protect them from
  • by oceanbites 6 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Shawn Wang! Shawn is “an oceanographer that studies ocean conditions of the past. I use everything from microfossils to complex computer models to understand how climate has changed in the past
  • by oceanbites 6 months ago
    Today we are highlighting some of our awesome new authors for  #WriterWednesday  Today we have Daniel Speer! He says, “I am driven to investigate the interface of biology, chemistry, and physics, asking questions about how organisms or biological systems respond
  • by oceanbites 7 months ago
    Here at Oceanbites we love long-term datasets. So much happens in the ocean that sometimes it can be hard to tell if a trend is a part of a natural cycle or actually an anomaly, but as we gather more
  • by oceanbites 7 months ago
    Have you ever seen a lobster molt? Because lobsters have exoskeletons, every time they grow they have to climb out of their old shell, leaving them soft and vulnerable for a few days until their new shell hardens. Young, small
  • by oceanbites 8 months ago
    A lot of zooplankton are translucent, making it much easier to hide from predators. This juvenile mantis shrimp was almost impossible to spot floating in the water, but under a dissecting scope it’s features really come into view. See the
  • by oceanbites 8 months ago
    This is a clump of Dead Man’s Fingers, scientific name Codium fragile. It’s native to the Pacific Ocean and is invasive where I found it on the east coast of the US. It’s a bit velvety, and the coolest thing
  • by oceanbites 9 months ago
    You’ve probably heard of jellyfish, but have you heard of salps? These gelatinous sea creatures band together to form long chains, but they can also fall apart and will wash up onshore like tiny gemstones that squish. Have you seen
  • by oceanbites 9 months ago
    Check out what’s happening on a cool summer research cruise! On the  #neslter  summer transect cruise, we deployed a tow sled called the In Situ Icthyoplankton Imaging System. This can take pictures of gelatinous zooplankton (like jellyfish) that would be
  • by oceanbites 10 months ago
    Did you know horseshoe crabs have more than just two eyes? In these juveniles you can see another set in the middle of the shell. Check out our website to learn about some awesome horseshoe crab research.  #oceanbites   #plankton   #horseshoecrabs 
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