Tag Archives: science

Frischer black gill paper published

Marc Frischer recently had a new paper on black gill published in the Journal of Shellfish Research. Dick Lee, Tina Walters, Karri Bulski and Ashley Price were among his co-authors.

Frischer M.E., Lee R.F., Price A.R., Walters T.L., Bassette M.A., Verdiyev R., Torris M.C., Bulski K., Geer P.J., Powell S.A., Walker A.N. and Landers S.C. (2017). Causes, diagnostics and distribution of an ongoing penaeid shrimp black gill epidemic in the South Atlantic Bight, USA. Journal of Shellfish Research. 36: 487-500. doi: 10.2983/035.036.0220

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Sydney Plummer awarded NSF fellowship

Sydney Plummer has been awarded an NSF graduate fellowship to investigate the ecophysiological roles of phytoplankton-derived reactive oxygen species.

Sydney is a Ph.D. student through the Integrated Life Sciences program at the University of Georgia. She is currently working in Julia Diaz’s lab. Her project involves studying superoxide production by phytoplankton in the presence of grazing predator species. Her hobbies include reading, camping, and going on adventures.

The fellowship of the National Science Foundation will allow her to advance the current understanding of factors that underlie the structure and productivity of marine microbial communities, coupled biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nutrients, and metals, and thereby provide implications for marine ecosystem health and climate.

Julia Diaz, her doctoral advisor, says “Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are typically considered toxic chemicals that are harmful to life. I am excited that Sydney’s PhD research will challenge this paradigm by investigating the possible beneficial roles of ROS in phytoplankton, such as growth promotion and defense against zooplankton grazers.”

Skidaway scientists head to Norway for phytoplankton research

A team of UGA Skidaway Institute scientists, led by Elizabeth Harvey, will be spending the next few weeks at a sophisticated mesocosm facility near Bergen, Norway. The team will be at will be at the station to study the interaction of the globally important phytoplankton Emiliania huxleyi (E. hux) with the viruses that infect and kill E. hux cells. You can follow along with the team and their international collaborators through their blog.

https://fjordphytoplankton.wordpress.com/

Gray’s Reef hosts MATE ROV competition

by Michelle Riley
Gray’s Reef NMS

Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary recently hosted their annual Southeast regional Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) competition. Spearheaded by GRNMS’s Volunteer and Events Coordinator Jody Patterson, staff and volunteers from the sanctuary as well as Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary Foundation welcomed sixteen teams of students who came to compete for first place and a shot to compete in the national MATE competition.

Wolfpack Robotics Team from North Paulding High School competing, first place winners. Photo Credit: Michelle Riley

The competition is open to young scientists from K-12 to university level students and challenges them to create innovative solutions to real-world situations that are dealt with by NOAA and other marine industries. This year’s theme was Port Cities of the Future, which prompted students to use their underwater robots to perform tasks that could be utilized to clean and maintain the waters of port cities. MATE encourages students to develop their entrepreneurial skills by creating a business plan that supports their innovative marine technology as well as marketing materials that showcase their work. Students choose from four classes of competition in which they can present their marketing materials and demonstrate their robots.

Vying for a spot at the international competition was the eight-time champion team InnovOcean from Carrollton High School as well as five other teams in the ranger class. Although the competition was fierce all day, in the end, first place fell to the Wolfpack Robotic Team from North Paulding High School in Dallas, Ga. Gray’s Reef congratulates all the teams that competed in the Southeast regional competition and will be cheering on the Wolfpack Robotic Team in June as they compete in the international competition in Long Beach, Calf.

 

Savannah Science Seminar @ Skidaway

A group of approximately 35 local high school students visited UGA Skidaway Institute on the evening of Monday, March 27, to get a close-up look at some Skidaway research. The students were participants in the Savannah Science Seminar, a nine-month-long program designed to promote an understanding and appreciation for science through informative, participatory presentations and hands-on workshops in the fields of engineering, technology, mathematics and the medical practices.

Julia Diaz organized the evening’s program. After an introductory talk by Jim Sanders, the students were split into three groups that rotated among three science stations.

Catherine Edwards explained the workings of autonomous underwater vehicles.

Patrick Duffy and Sean Anderson demonstrated the workings of the new LIME imaging lab.

Julia Diaz and Sydney Plummer discussed eutrophication and phytoplankton blooms.

Skidaway scientists attend ASLO

Skidaway Institute was well represented at the 2017 Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography Aquatic Sciences Meeting in Honolulu, Hawaii,  February 26 – March 3.

Aron Stubbins and Sasha Wagner chaired a two-day session titled “The Biogeochemistry of Dissolved Organic Matter.”

Sasha presented her research on “Stable Carbon Isotopes Offer New Insight into the Biogeochemical Cycling of Black Carbon.” Aron, Jay Brandes and A. Ramapo Goranov, from the College of New Jersey were co-authors.

Former Skidaway Institute intern (Stubbins Lab) Camisha Few presented a poster “Photodegradation of Dissolved Organic Carbon Within the Connecticut River Watershed.” Camisha is a student at Florida A&M University. Her co-authors included Aron, Sasha, Kevin Ryan and K. Haiat-Sasson from the University of Rhode Island.

Camisha Few explaining all about CDOM and FDOM photochemistry at S+ASLO 2017

Aron presented his work on “Tree-Dom: DOM from the Crowning Headwaters of the Aquatic Carbon Cycle.” His co-authors included Sasha, T. Dittmar from the University of Oldenburg, Germany, and J.T. Van Stan from Georgia Southern University.

Thais Bittar presented “Growth, Grazing and Virus-Induced Mortality of Bacterioplankton in the Sargasso Sea.” Her co-authors included Karrie Bulski, Elizabeth Harvey, R. Parsons from the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences, S. Giovannoni from Oregon State University and C. Carlson from UC-Santa Barbara.

Cliff Buck and Chris Marsay also made presentations. Cliff chaired a session on atmospheric deposition, “Linking atmospheric deposition to the biogeochemistry of aquatic and marine systems.” His co-organizer was Rachel Shelley from LEMAR-Universite de Bretagne Occidentale, France.

Both Cliff and Chris gave talks about data from the Arctic cruise in a session titled “Biogeochemical Cycling Trace Elements and Isotopes in the Arctic Ocean.”  Cliff’s talk was on the aerosol data and titled “Aerosol Concentration, Composition and Fractional Solubility on the US Geotraces Western Arctic Cruise.” In addition to Chris, his co-authors included A. Ebling, P. Morton, B Summers and W. Landing, all from Florida State University. Chris presented melt pond data, “Dissolved and Particulate Trace Elements in Arctic Melt Ponds.” In addition to Cliff, his co-authors included P. Morton, B Summers and W. Landing, all from Florida State University, and S. Rauschenberg and B.S. Twining, both from the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences.

 

Skidaway Institute radar system restored after Hurricane Matthew

Gabe Matthias

Gabe Matthias

UGA Skidaway Institute of Oceanography’s WERA radar system is back on line after being knocked out by Hurricane Matthew, and Dana Savidge is crediting research technician Gabe Matthias for the accomplishment.

Savidge’s lab operates two low-power radar installations, one at the Villas by the Sea Resort on Jekyll Island and the other on the beach at the north end of St. Catherine’s Island. The radar system monitors the speed and direction of surface ocean currents on the continental shelf.

Both installations went down due to power failure during the early October storm. The St. Catherine’s installation was off-line the longest, but it was actually the easier fix. It was relatively undamaged, but power wasn’t restored to the north end of the mostly uninhabited island until December. Matthias said when he visited the St. Catherine’s site after the storm, the power was still out. He removed some debris and straightened the antennas, and then used a back-up power supply to test the equipment.

“It ran out of juice quickly, so I had about 10 seconds to look at the return and see that it all looked good,” he said. “I was psyched and like ‘It’s all here. St. Catherine’s will be just fine.’”

The installation on Jekyll Island was another story. The antennas were mounted on a beachside boardwalk and on the adjacent beach.

A radar antenna mixed with hurricane debris at Jekyll Island.

A radar antenna mixed with hurricane debris at Jekyll Island.

“When I got there, I could see we were in trouble,” Matthias recalled. “Three of the four antennas on the sand and several on the boardwalk were knocked down and rolled up in all the rack, logs and seaweed, and shoved up into the dunes to the new high tide line.”

Matthias spent several days just cutting through the debris to recover the antennas and cable. One antenna was completely buried. Matthias only located it because he was able to trace the cable that was sticking out of the sand. Eventually, he was able to repair seven of the 12 receive antennas and two of the four transmit antennas. When power was restored, the installation went back online but with limited capability, pending the delivery of replacement parts.

“I was hooting and hollering and screaming for joy when I got the Jekyll Island installation back online,” Matthias said.

Savidge praised Matthias for his work. “Gabe did a great job under trying circumstances. I can’t say enough about his energy and dedication.”