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Archive for May, 2018

Ocean to Table Mercury: a Rising Risk

For fish eaters, mercury consumption is an ever-present worry but often pushed to the backs of our minds. But the risk of mercury poisoning is only increasing as human activity introduce more mercury into the ocean and atmosphere. In their recent paper, Lavoie and his colleagues estimate how much mercury is reaching our plates through […]

Turn Up The Heat, Turn Down the Productivity

What happens if we do not curb carbon emissions? In a recent study, Moore and co-authors (2018) predict the implications of sustained carbon emissions. Ocean nutrients may be redistributed leaving much of the global ocean in a state of declining biological production! Check out this article to learn more! Melanie FeenI am a first year graduate […]

Bite or Flight: How Seaweed Can Shape Feeding Behavior in Fish

What is a forest without trees or a coral reef without coral? Neither a forest nor a coral reef. Entire ecosystems are made possible by the living flora that define them; they provide shelter and hunting grounds for the animals which live in them. But what happens when the building blocks of these ecosystems are […]

The Efficiency of Nautili

Imagine if you could function just as well at the top of Mt. Everest (where the air is super thin) as you do at sea level; you’d probably be considered pretty special. Well, nautiluses can do that, and these researchers wanted to know why. Anne M. HartwellHello, welcome to Oceanbites! My name is Annie, I’m […]

Not Just Hanging Out: The Importance of Humpback Whale Mother Calf-Area Use in Hawaii

Continue to celebrate Mother’s Day before May ends by exploring the amazing bond between humpback whale mothers and their calves. Understanding mother-calf pod area utilization might just be the next step in protecting and conserving these giant marine mammals to ensure their continued path to recovery. Rishya NarayananRishya is pursuing an M.S. in Environmental Science […]

Cyanobacteria invasions… from space?

They may not come from space, but they can be seen from up there! Learn how microscopic plants called cyanobacteria accumulate in the Baltic Sea, how they’re measured with satellites, and what it all means. Nyla HusainI’m a 4th year PhD student at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography. I use models to […]

Big Momma: bigger fish are better moms

What makes a fish a good mom? Read here to see why scientists now think that big fish moms are the best fish moms. Ashley MarranzinoI received my Master’s degree from the University of Rhode Island where I studied the sensory biology of deep-sea fishes. I am now working with the South Carolina DNR at […]

Power by the numbers: tiny shrimp generate turbulence in the ocean

Imagine hundreds of thousands of tiny shrimp swimming in the ocean. Believe it or not, the combined swimming action of these ocean dwellers can generate large-scale mixing of the ocean water column. Read on to learn more about these incredible ocean mixers. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department […]

Arctic Lights

We often think of the Arctic as a cold, dark place. But as sea ice continues to recede in the far north, the Arctic ocean might get quite a bit lighter. A new study out of Norway suggests these changes could alter the behavior of a particularly important type of plankton. Eric OrensteinEric is a […]

Gassing Earth Out of the Ice Age: the North Pacific

Enhanced upwelling and CO2 degassing from the North Pacific during a warm climate event 14,000 years ago may have helped keep atmospheric CO2 levels high enough to propel the Earth out of the last ice age. Zoe GentesZoe has an M.S. in Oceanography and a B.S. in Geologic Oceanography from URI, with a minor in […]

Predicted Change to the Southern Ocean Silicate Front

The Southern Ocean Silicate Front (SF) is an important boundary separating waters that are silicate-rich and waters that are silicate-poor. The position of the SF determines where microorganisms like diatoms (that need silicate to form their shells) can grow. A new study predicts a poleward shift in the Southern Ocean Silicate Front by the end […]

Seaweed may be a winner in a warming world

Have you ever thought about ocean critters that might benefit from climate change? Hernández et al. collected six species of seaweed to investigate who might thrive in the warmer, more acidic waters of the future. Read more to see if any seaweed species were winners! Victoria TreadawayI am a PhD candidate at the Graduate School […]

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