Archive for June, 2011
Coral Reef Fact:
The pilot fish (Naucrates ductor) has a mutualistic relationship with sharks, rays and sea turtles. These fish follow the larger creature feeding off of and removing their parasites and eating scrapes from their feeding.
Fact source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pilot_fish#cite_note-2
By Richard Gray, Science Correspondent. 6:45AM BST 26 Jun 2011
Warming ocean waters are causing the largest movement of marine species seen on Earth in more than two million years, according to scientists.
In the Arctic, melting sea ice during recent summers has allowed a passage to open up from the Pacific ocean into the North Atlantic, allowing plankton, fish and even whales to into the Atlantic Ocean from the Pacific. Read the full story
by Blythe Copeland, Great Neck, New York
Sometimes it takes the simple clarity of a child to change the world as we know it.
Among all the social change, political maneuvering, and serious issues facing the environment today, there are plenty of savvy kids taking matters into their own hands: Coming up with plans to save countless gallons of water in their cities, tackling Mcdonalds, fighting to stop mountaintop removal mining, raising money for Gulf Coast relief efforts, and more.
1. Caitlyn Larsen
Ten-year-old Caitlyn Larsen of Orogrande, New Mexico, was just one of the locals who got an uneasy feeling when she saw a new hole, filled with mining equipment, in the side of a mountain — but she was also one of the most vocal.
Caitlyn sent out a press release to draw attention to the environmental devastation that the mining effort would leave in its wake. The release caught the attention of the director of the New Mexico mining and Mineral Division, who checked a little further into the operation and found that the company behind the mine was “less than above the board.”
The company was forced to withdraw and the mountain is still standing. Read the full story
by Underwatertimes.com News Service – June 28, 2011 21:59 EST
GAINSVILLE, Florida — University of Florida researchers received a rare 25-foot-long, deep-water giant squid Monday, the only one of its kind in the collections of the Florida Museum of Natural History.
Recovered by recreational fishermen who found the creature floating on the surface about 12 miles offshore from Jensen Beach Sunday, museum scientists collected the specimen from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Tequesta Field Laboratory in Palm Beach County and returned to the Gainesville campus late Monday. Read the full article
Coral Reef Fact:
Caribbean Reef Squid (Sepioteuthis sepioidea) are 1 of 6 species of “flying squid”. These squid “fly” by expanding their mantle which fills with water. They quickly contract their muscles to expel the water to propel themselves in any direction & sometimes times out of the water if they are startled or fleeing predators.
Join Reef Relief today and help protect our marine world. www.reefrelief.org/act/donate
Taking the EPA’s Authority Away
A House committee approved a bill that would gut much of the EPA’s power to enforce clean water standards. The Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act, approved by the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, would transfer regulatory power over water, wetlands and mountaintop mining to the states, Greenwire reports. The House leadership plans to hold a floor vote this summer.
In response, the EPA said the bill would undermine its role under the Clean Water Act, would make environmental protection more litigious, and could result in upstream states adopting standards that impair waters for those downstream, according to the agency’s legal analysis obtained by Greenwire. Read all the latest US water policy news
Science Daily (June 24, 2011) — This spring, scientists from the California Academy of Sciences braved leeches, lionfish, whip-scorpions and a wide variety of other biting and stinging creatures to lead the most comprehensive scientific survey effort ever conducted in the Philippines, documenting both terrestrial and marine life forms from the tops of the highest mountains to the depths of the sea. They were joined on this unprecedented, multi-disciplinary undertaking by more than two dozen colleagues from the Philippines, as well as by a team of Academy educators who worked to share the expedition’s findings with local community and conservation groups. Read the full article
Coral Reef Fact:
The spinner shark (Carcharhinus brevipinna) is named for its feeding strategy. “When feeding on schools of forage fish, they will speed vertically through the school while spinning on their axis, erupting from the water at the end.” FACT SOURCE: Wikipedia
ScienceDaily (June 23, 2011) — A University of Exeter team has monitored the movements of an entire sub-population of marine turtle for the first time. The study confirms that through satellite tracking we can closely observe the day-to-day lives of marine turtles, accurately predicting their migrations and helping direct conservation efforts. Read the full article
Marine oil spills are usually measured by the amount of oil floating on the surface. But the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico—from a deep-sea well required a different approach. Find out how one fluid-dynamics expert caused estimates to rise sharply practically overnight.
© 2011 National Geographic; partially funded by NSF
ONE OF THE KEY QUESTIONS IN THE 2010 GULF OIL SPILL WILL LIKELY NEVER BE COMPLETELY ANSWERED – EXACTLY HOW MUCH OIL SURGED INTO THE SEA?
ESTIMATES RANGED IN THE EARLY DAYS OF THE SPILL – WITH THE COAST GUARD AT FIRST SAYING JUST 1,000 BARRELS A DAY WERE LEAKING AND THEN RAISING THAT TO 5,000. BUT ON MAY 12TH, 2010, THAT NUMBER SOARED DRAMATICALLY. THE REASON? A FLUID DYNAMICS EXPERT AT PURDUE UNIVERSITY GOT TO SEE VIDEO OF THE RUPTURED WELL AND SAW THAT THE NUMBERS CLEARLY WERE NOT ADDING UP. Read more