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Andrea Schlunk

Andrea Schlunk has written 23 posts for oceanbites

Far-Flung Relatives: A seabird’s story of population fragmentation

The Peruvian diving petrel was once abundant along the Pacific coast of South America. These days, though, only seven breeding colonies dot the coastline, separated by dozens of miles. Conservation efforts were initially aimed at the species as a whole, but a recent study has uncovered evidence that calls into question how effective those efforts […]

The Evidence of Things Not Seen: eDNA and Fisheries Stocks

Unlike fields of corn or herds of cattle whose yields are easily counted, wild fish stocks are more difficult to count. The ocean is a huge place, so finding and estimating populations to set future catch limits is really hard! There may be a new way of gathering this information though—one with less impact to […]

Communication Woes: Are we speaking the same language?

Scientists know communicating the significance of their findings is a huge part of their job. But what happens when the words we use mean different things to different people? When references and metaphors are only understood by certain generations, or by people from specific geographic regions? What hurdles come after the experiments are done and […]

Coming Home to Roost: A case of parasites relying on ancestral DNA to take advantage of a new penguin host species?

Parasites are nasty and resilient organisms, often highly specialized to fit their hosts. But sometimes, nature allows a bit of wiggle room, opportunity strikes, and new species find themselves vulnerable to these unwelcome houseguests. This could be what has happened to Magellanic penguins. Curious to learn more? Click here! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD […]

Now you see me, now you don’t…or do you?

Camouflage is a fantastic adaptation that appears all over the tree of life. One thing we don’t often consider, though, is how effective the disguise of camouflage is when viewed through non-human eyes. Click here to find out more about how flounder hide in plain sight of their predators and prey! Andrea SchlunkI am a […]

A look into the past…and into a gnarly set of teeth

New discoveries are made every day, but ‘new’ does not always mean current. In this case, scientists are using technology to reconstruct the jaws of a creature that dominated the oceans over 70 million years ago and are solving the mystery of how its strange teeth allowed for a diverse diet. Intrigued? Andrea SchlunkI am […]

Fisheries and Food Security

Fish have provided sustenance for millions of people, but in a world where stocks are rapidly depleting, what are the consequences of trying to save and rehabilitate their populations? Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, having discovered my love of teaching and informal science education in part through […]

Citizen Science in the New Year!

Tired of only reading articles about science and wishing you could get out there any join those research teams instead? Well, you don’t need a degree to help out—you can get involved in any number of citizen science initiatives! So, if you feel like chipping in and helping scientists gather data, click here to find […]

The Polar Linkage Express: complicated interactions between the Arctic and mid-latitudes

Climb aboard the Polar Linkage Express to learn about the main challenges facing scientists as they try to decipher just what is going on with winter weather these days! Is it really linked to the state of the Arctic? Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, having discovered my […]

With A Little Help From My Friend: Unexpected benefits of invasive species?

Invasive species are widely talked about as unequivocally bad influences on ecosystems, but oftentimes their interactions are more complex. Click here to read more about an unexpected interplay between two mussel species in the intertidal zone! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, having discovered my love of teaching […]

Oil rigs, the food trucks of the sea?

We humans don’t always take time to assess how we impact other environments; more often we survey before we enter the ecosystem, but what happens when we leave? Oil rigs in the North Sea have provided a great opportunity for scientists to start investigating. Click here to find out more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former […]

Listening for Symptoms: A new use for hydrophones in the face of harmful algal blooms

Whales aren’t the only animals hydrophones can detect out in the ocean. In fact, in the near future it might be possible to listen in on animals like scallops and determine if they’re healthy or not. Intrigued? Click here for more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, having […]

Do You Have Your Exit Buddy?

It’s a tough ocean out there for a larval fish—sticking together can be the best thing to do. But until now, we didn’t know how beneficial schooling could be. Intrigued? Click here to find out more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, having discovered my love of teaching […]

Light on the Tree of Life: Evolution of Bioluminescence

The darkness can be scary sometimes–but that’s when evolution can get pretty crazy in its adaptations. Meet some of the fishes that can glow in the dark and learn about how many times this special ability evolved–it’s certainly surprised many scientists in the community! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of […]

Bringing Down the Fever: Sea Star Wasting Disease

Sea stars have been wasting away–literally! Outbreaks of this poorly understood disease have been noticed many times in the last century, and now, a new study has come out trying to understand the potential for sea stars to survive this threat. Intrigued? Click here to read more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from […]

Going Mute: Ocean acidification silences shrimp snaps

Coastal areas could fall silent in the next century as ocean acidification alters and affects the natural soundscapes of the oceans. Intrigued? Click here to read more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, having discovered my love of teaching and informal science education in part through OceanBites! Since […]

Summiting Sand Dune Crests: A challenge of restoration

With spring break upon us, we’re all looking for a way to unwind and have fun. For some areas relying on tourism for economic stability, though, fragile habitats can often be overlooked in an effort to keep money flowing in. Click here to find out more about new research being conducted on restoring one of […]

The Search for Dolly Varden

A fish that has contributed greatly to subsistence farming in Alaska might face negative impacts of human development and become the victim of a misunderstanding for the second time in as many centuries. Click here to find out more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, having discovered my […]

Making Room for New Neighbors: Observing Penguin Foraging

What happens when we rely on models, only to realize we’re missing pieces of the puzzle? Climate change models predict Adélie penguins will face increased resource competition from other penguin species, but new evidence indicates modifying behavior might take some pressure off these flightless birds. Read to find out more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former […]

A Snack That’s Literally On the House?

Most important relationships have deep running roots, not always visible to the world. It turns out, some symbiotic or mutualistic associations in nature have more layers to them than meets the eye. Case in point: the clownfish and the anemone. Intrigued? Click here to read more! Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student from the […]

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