Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences

Ocean Life, Planet Health

Dec 2010 eNews

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Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences
December 9, 2010

As the Year Ends
Best wishes for the holidays to our friends in the region, across the United States, and around the world. Many thanks to everyone who has been supporting our research scientists and keeping up with our publications, reports, and messages from the field. We are grateful to all of you who have contributed much-needed funds for new staff, programs, and operations during this challenging time of opportunity and growth. Please consider making a year-end donation online or by mail to Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, P.O. Box 475, 180 McKown Point Road, West Boothbay Harbor, ME 04575. May we all share in the exciting discoveries about our Ocean Planet that lie ahead. Thank you for your help. All gifts are tax deductible. Bigelow Laboratory is a Maine nonprofit public benefit corporation and is qualified as a tax-exempt organization under Sec. 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Copies of audited financial statements are available on request from the Director of Finance.

Holiday photo above by Greg Bernard.

Teacher Professional Development Workshop

From left: David Fields, Ted Taylor, Jon Kerr, and Lauren Harkins. Photo by Rebecca Fowler.

Ten teachers from high schools across Maine met at the Laboratory on December 4 for an all day workshop designed to help integrate ocean science principles into high school science curricula. Led by the Laboratory’s Dr. David Fields, Dr. Nicole Poulton, CCMP Assistant Curator Carrie Schuman, and Education Director Rebecca Fowler, the day included an overview of current research directions in ocean science, hands-on laboratory activities, and a discussion of how scientists and teachers can collaborate to improve ocean science education. The group plans to meet again next summer for a four-day workshop, during which teachers will receive and learn to use lesson plans, laboratory experiments, and equipment. Participants on December 4 were: Lauren Harkins (Boothbay Region High School), Ted Taylor (Bangor High School), Beth Baker (Belfast High School), Dave Thomas (Belfast High School),ÊSharon Gallant (Gardiner High School), Sue Richman (South Portland High School), Jon Kerr (Camden Hills Regional High School), Gisele Faucher (Madawaska Middle/ High School), Linda McDermott (Madawaska Middle/High School), and Heather Sinclair (Isleboro Central School). A grant from the Horizon Foundation provided support for the workshop.

January in Waterville: Bigelow Scientists to Teach at Colby College

Photo courtesy of Colby College

As part of the Laboratory’s partnership with Colby College, Bigelow scientists will teach two courses at the Waterville, Maine campus during the College’s intensive four-week January Program (“Jan Plan”) beginning on January 3, 2011. Dr. Pete Countway is teaching Diversity and Function of Life in Oceanic Realms, a survey of the diversity of life in the oceans, with particular emphasis on microbial life forms, highlighting the revolutionary molecular tools (e.g., PCR, metagenomics, and genomics) used in oceanographic assessments of life in the sea and the potential role of biodiversity in maintaining healthy marine ecosystems. Dr. David McClellan’s Marine Ecosystem Response to Climate Change course will focus on how marine ecosystems change in response to changes in weather conditions over long periods of time, and examine how stresses resulting from such changes can often lead to the adaptation or extinction of biological populations and communities. The Jan Plan is designed to offer “opportunities for students to experiment outside of their major or to tackle some special challenge or focused research within their major.” This is the second year the Laboratory has participated in the Jan Plan semester at Colby College.

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences …exploring the world’s oceans, from microbes to global ecosystems


Poulton Interviewed on Tara

Bigelow Research Scientist Dr. Nicole Poulton has recently returned from several weeks as Chief Scientist aboard the three-year Tara Oceans expedition. Poulton was interviewed about the expedition’s research mission by NTD Television when the Tara docked in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Coming Soon:
Educator at Sea

The coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi. Courtesy of the Belgian Federal Science Policy Office.

The Laboratory’s Education Director Rebecca Fowler will be part of a research expedition in the South Atlantic beginning on January 11, 2011. The National Science Foundation–sponsored Great Southern Coccolithophore Belt expedition will study the effects of ocean acidification on the Southern Hemisphere’s largest recurring phytoplankton bloom. Fowler is preparing a cruise website—including a photo journal and blog—to share information about research activities, science, and life at sea with teachers, students, and the public. Bigelow Senior Research Scientist Dr. Barney Balch is the chief scientist for the five-week transect across the South Atlantic. Balch will lead a multi-institutional team of researchers, including Bigelow SRS Dr. Ben Twining and Colby College Professor of Chemistry Dr. Whitney King, along with undergraduates from Colby College and Western Washington University. Stay tuned for more information and links to the expedition as it gets underway in the new year.

REU 2011
The Laboratory will begin accepting applications for its 2011 Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program Gulf of Maine and the World Ocean on January 15. Applications must be received no later than March 15, 2011. More information about applying for this ten-week National Science Foundation-sponsored summer residency program at the Laboratory is available on the REU webpage.

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