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Kristin Huizenga

Kristin Huizenga has written 30 posts for oceanbites

Sea lions and seals and PFAS, oh my: Location still matters for Australian pups

I recently found myself falling down a chemical pollutant rabbit hole. Every news source seemed to be shouting “PFAS chemicals are inside you, and they are ruining fertility and shrinking penises!” There are several reasons that these conclusions may be premature, but the potential threat of PFAS seems to finally be getting the attention it […]

Let them eat plastic – Animals eating microplastic could choke the ocean

Plastic pollution may bring to mind big images – dead birds, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, and beaches filled with trash. But as plastic breaks down into smaller pieces, called microplastics, the ocean’s smallest animals are able to eat it. Ultimately, this could make it harder for sea creatures to breathe. Kristin HuizengaI am a […]

Getting warmer – How will climate change shape disease?

Is a warmer world really a sicker world? When it comes to the ocean, it’s not always that clear. However, by looking at diseases in coastal waters, we may be able to get a better sense of what the future holds. Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD student studying Biological Oceanography at the University of Rhode […]

Of rain and reefs: Future downpours in French Polynesia could change the coast

In many ways, coral reefs are the Goldilocks of the ocean. But as climate change shifts conditions near many of the planet’s reefs, finding “just right” may be increasingly difficult. Researchers at UCLA set out to explore how one expected outcome of climate change, extreme rainfall events, may impact coral reefs in the future. Kristin […]

Two by two includes corals too? Researchers call for a coral “Noah’s Ark”

In the Bible, the story of Noah’s Ark describes a storm so intense and so long that the earth is covered in water, killing all except those protected in a massive boat. Today, coral scientists are proposing their own “Noah’s Ark,” but this time the relentless storm is climate change. Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD […]

It’s a match! Cod do best when paired with copepods

What makes or breaks the young life of a cod? Maybe it’s food. Researchers investigated the overlap between young cod and a fatty copepod in the Norwegian-Barents Sea. Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD student studying Biological Oceanography at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography. My interests are in food webs, ecology, and the […]

Crushed it: Sea turtles can help us understand hurricanes in the mid-Atlantic

Predicting what hurricanes will do is a matter of life and death, but when Hurricane Irene headed north in 2011, the predictions broke down. A group of scientists are using tracking devices on sea turtles to better understand what happens when the hot force of a hurricane hits the cold mid-Atlantic. Kristin HuizengaI am a […]

Consider the marsh crab: Climate change shifts which species are key

Munching, nibbling and burrowing their way through life, the humble marsh crab can now add “keystone species” to its ecological resume. As sea level rise has inundated shorelines on the East Coast of the United States, marsh crabs have emerged as important players in shaping how marshes respond to climate change. Kristin HuizengaI am a […]

Fig leaf or laurel wreath – When does “green” development help or hurt the ocean?

Making new coastal development more environmentally friendly seems like a win-win, but how much is helpful and how much is just for show? Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD student studying Biological Oceanography at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography. My interests are in food webs, ecology, and the interaction of humans and the […]

A game of shark and ray: Rays act differently when sharks are around

As our oceans change, we don’t really know what the current decline of sharks means for stingrays, or for the coral reefs where they both live. Scientists at James Cook University and the Australian Institute of Marine Science want to find out. Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD student studying Biological Oceanography at the University of […]

The Blob: A movie monster of the sea

The Blob, the Pacific marine heatwave from 2016, sounds more like a movie monster than a natural phenomenon. Still the Blob can have some monstrous effects, especially for hungry fish. Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD student studying Biological Oceanography at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography. My interests are in food webs, ecology, […]

Follow the breadcrumbs: Sponges show how some animals clean up viruses

These days, hunkered down in our homes (if we are lucky) and washing our hands till they’re raw, it can feel like the outside world is a virus soup. However animals in the ocean go swimming through viruses on a daily basis. A new study from the Netherlands shows us that in fact many animals […]

Catch prey while the sun shines – Herring grow bigger when they can see their food

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a sea creature in possession of a home in higher latitudes (further from the equator), must (on average) possess more size than its mid latitude neighbors. But why should high latitude fish be in possession of such a good fortune? Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD student studying Biological […]

Protections with a bite: Are toothed whales sheltered by South African Marine Protected Areas?

Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are often put into place to protect biodiversity and essential fish stocks, but toothed whales are rarely considered when deciding where to put an MPA. As South Africa looks to expand its protected areas, Jean Purdon and her colleagues set out to learn where the toothed whales are living off the […]

Want to know about water? Ask some sea creatures

There are animals that are constantly traversing places we have barely begun to understand. Animals can’t directly tell us what is going on, but what if we could get the information in a different way? A group of scientists led by Dr. David March set out to show how we can use animal born instruments […]

Sea-sick – Examining ocean diseases through literature

From coral bleaching to sea star wasting disease, stories of an unhealthy ocean have been all over the news. But are the animals in the sea actually sicker than before? Without long-running data sets tracking disease over time, it can be hard to see if diseases are growing more prevalent. In spite of this, Dr. […]

A silver lining: How warming waters in the Gulf of Maine gave lobsters a leg up

Warming coastal waters in New England have been linked to a decline in lobsters in southern New England, but a new article by Goode et al. proposes that it is precisely this warming that boosted the Maine lobster fishery to where it is now. Kristin HuizengaI am a PhD student studying Biological Oceanography at the […]

Clinging, cloning jellyfish: How an old species is coming back with new force

On the fourth of July, 2019, happy beach-goers in Rhode Island escaped the directness of the sun by wading into Point Judith Pond. For an unlucky few, this small pleasure turned out to be immensely painful. By July 5, people were being warned about clinging jellyfish. What was this new threat to unsuspecting swimmers? Turns […]

Are you jelly? Citizen scientists find jellyfish to help sea turtles

The largest leatherback ever recorded weighed 2,019 pounds, and yet this behemoth lives on a diet composed almost entirely of jelly – gelatinous zooplankton that is. These endangered sea turtles travel up to the Atlantic Canadian coast during the summer in search of a tasty treat. In order to better understand the link between jellyfish […]

On the case: Scientists use many sources to find the culprit in kelp disappearance

The extensive decline of the Great Barrier Reef has received a lot of press attention in recent years, yet reefs aren’t the only down-under ecosystem struggling. In a recent paper in Estuaries and Coasts, researchers Carnell and Keough from the University of Melbourne and Deakin University have reported an equally alarming decline in kelp forests […]

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    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 
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  • by oceanbites 4 months ago
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  • by oceanbites 5 months ago
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    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 5 months ago
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  • by oceanbites 6 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 6 months ago
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  • by oceanbites 6 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 7 months ago
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  • by oceanbites 7 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 7 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
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    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 8 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 9 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 9 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 9 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 10 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 11 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 11 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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