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Katherine Barrett

Katherine Barrett has written 25 posts for oceanbites

Salmon may fuel a sky full of songbirds

Imagine: you are walking along a stream in the woods. As you look at the stream, you see bright pink fish-salmon-swimming upstream, and a diverse symphony of bird songs calls your attention to the nearby trees and shrubs that are full of life. Could it be that the ocean is linked to these woodland birds […]

Long-term monitoring reveals optimistic future for endangered limpets

Monitoring species populations over is important if scientists want to understand how the species will persist into the future. Read on to see how one research group used long-term monitoring data to develop a future prognosis and conservation plan for the endangered Giant Limpet, an important marine invertebrate in the Mediterranean Sea. Katherine BarrettKate is […]

Have any sharks? Play GoFish and find out!

Scientists increasingly monitor what species are present in marine ecosystems as a way to figure out the health of that system and to detect if some species are threatened. Prior to the era of environmental DNA (eDNA) as a tool for detecting marine species, scientists would use traditional fish net and trawling methods to collect […]

Hydrothermal vents spew out tasty morsels for local marine consumers

Hydrothermal vents are not only cool structures where magma meets the sea; they offer a previously unappreciated food source for marine organisms. Read on to find out how Chang et al. 2018 uncovered the role of vents in marine food webs. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at […]

If the benthos could talk: the value of long-term biodiversity monitoring

The tiny critters that burrow, swim, and graze in the benthic (bottom) habitats of marine ecosystems are often monitored over long time periods so that researchers can measure changes in biodiversity over time. Read on to find out how researchers used long-term benthic data from Narragansett Bay to link human activities with changes in biodiversity. […]

Monitoring the benthos by listening to photosynthesis

Even though the benthos is a largely unseen energy base for marine food webs, scientists are listening to benthic habitats as a novel way to monitor ecosystem health. Read on to learn about how acoustics can capture sounds produced by benthic algae. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department […]

Navigating historical passages of marine invasive species

Invasive species are a persistent threat to marine ecosystems. In this post, authors explore the historical context of marine invasive species and point toward the need for the public to be engaged in preventing the spread of invasive species. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University […]

Microbialites are the unseen power house for marine and inland sea ecosystems

Ever hear someone say, “Just because you can’t see something, doesn’t mean it’s not there?” Well, microscopic bacteria and algae are hard to see, but they play an important role in marine ecosystems, and in some cases, many different types of bacteria and algae grow together and produce large reef-like structures. Read on to find […]

Hope in isolation: four small islands are defying current threats to ocean health

Would you believe me if I told you that the oceans still possessed pristine, unimpacted habitats? In an age where we are learning more and more about how multiple stresses-from climate change to increasing pollution-are hurting our oceans, one recent study has shed light on the remarkable healthy ecosystem of a group of small islands […]

Linking marine and human health in Hispaniola

Biodiversity is often associated with higher standards of human livelihood, but researchers have yet to draw a direct line between healthy marine ecosystems and humans. Read on to learn how national infrastructure can complicate the relationship between biodiversity and human health. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department 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 […]

Honey I shrunk the….fish?

What we know about commercial fishing’s repercussions on reef fish is more complicated than just reducing the size of their populations. Commercial fishing exploits are driving some fish species to become smaller. Read on to find out more and how marine protected areas may be critical to the recovery of exploited fish populations. Katherine BarrettKate […]

Tracking predators in seagrass beds

Scientists have long recognized that predators are more abundant at lower compared to higher latitudes. Read more to find out how a group of marine ecologists investigated the importance of predator-prey interactions in seagrass beds. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of Notre Dame, and […]

Restoring the links between land and sea

On February 2, we celebrated World Wetlands Day. Wetlands, some of the most productive ecosystems on earth, are threatened. Read on to learn how salt marshes, a type of wetland, can be restored after decades of degradation. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of Notre […]

Marine diatoms eat climate change’s dust

Multiple, interacting factors from climate change make it difficult for scientists to predict how marine life will respond to climate change. Read on to find out how researchers studied the effects of dust deposition, ocean warming, and increased carbon dioxide concentrations on a common marine diatom. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in […]

Corals get their auras read

Corals, depending on dominant cover type, can influence the microbial community living in the surrounding water. Read on to find out more about the coral aura-biome. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of Notre Dame, and holds a Masters in Environmental Science & Biology from […]

Beyond word of mouth: How local knowledge can fill fisheries data gaps

How can we accurately assess the extent of population declines in marine organisms? Read on to find out how local and traditional knowledge can inform future fisheries management by recounting past experiences. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of Notre Dame, and holds a Masters […]

How to model climate change in an Arctic food web

The climate is changing, and so are Arctic food webs. But our knowledge of how food webs respond to warmer Arctic water temperatures is incomplete, so scientists use models to help further understanding of future food web scenarios. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of […]

How to clean a sea turtle

Could you imagine if you had to actively seek out showering stations to stay clean? For sea turtles, they must search for cleaning stations. Katherine BarrettKate is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of Notre Dame, and holds a Masters in Environmental Science & Biology from SUNY Brockport. […]

Wandering copepods can’t find their way home in acidic oceans

Journal source: Smith, J. N., C. Richter, K. Fabricius, and A. Cornils. 2017. Pontellid copepods affected by ocean acidification: A field study at natural CO2 seeps. PLoS ONE 12 doi: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0175663. Introduction Ocean acidification (OA for short) is a topic that seems to be receiving increased attention, and if you’ve scrolled through some recent Oceanbites posts, […]

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