Marine Science in the News: Changing water temperatures causing animals to relocate

Under rapidly changing conditions animals have 3 “choices”: migrate, adapt or die. Ocean temperatures are rising rapidly (a byproduct of climate change) and many animals are struggling to keep up. Coral reef animals are especially at risk, with large-scale coral bleaching events occurring in tropical waters around the globe. Recently, a team of researchers found that some coral reef fish are opting to relocate to cooler waters to call home instead of adapting to the changing conditions. Acclimating is energetically costly, and sometimes results in extremely harmful physical consequences. A team from the University of Texas at Austin examined blue-green damselfish (Chromis viridis), which are

Marine Science in the News: Changing water temperatures causing animals to relocate

Under rapidly changing conditions animals have 3 “choices”: migrate, adapt or die. Ocean temperatures are rising rapidly (a byproduct of climate change) and many animals are struggling to keep up. Coral reef animals are especially at risk, with large-scale coral bleaching events occurring in tropical waters around the globe. Recently, a team of researchers found that some coral reef fish are opting to relocate to cooler waters to call home instead of adapting to the changing conditions. Acclimating is energetically costly, and sometimes results in extremely harmful physical consequences. A team from the University of Texas at Austin examined blue-green damselfish (Chromis viridis), which are

Creature Feature: A Different Kind of Bird - The Great Blue Heron

In honor of Thanksgiving, we are celebrating a local feathered friend-the great blue heron! This bird sports grey-blue plumage on its body with a thick black stripe over its eyes. It is the largest of North America’s heron species, reaching about 4.5 feet in height with a 6-foot wingspan. At least half of this bird’s height is in its long legs. They can be found throughout North America, with some pairs nesting as far north as Alaska! Although some great blue herons migrate between summer breeding grounds and winter nesting sites, most of our Pacific coast individuals are year-round residents. In our bay alone, we are lucky enough to have around 600 nesting pairs of great blue herons-one pai

Marine Science Camp 2017: What have we been up to?

2016 was a great summer and we wish our campers were still here. After all, nothing is more fun than camp with animal-touching, games, teambuilding and new adventures every day! Summer campers are resuming their school year duties, but rest assured, Marine Science Institute hasn’t been idle. Every day Monday through Friday and some Saturdays too, MSI hosts schools near and far for a variety of marine science programs. Almost daily we have a Shoreside program at our facility in Redwood City and 1-2 Discovery Voyages aboard the R/V Robert G. Brownlee, our 90-foot research vessel. MSI also often brings animals and marine science to schools. We offer a plethora of other programs that may be runn

Marine Science Camp 2017: What have we been up to?

2016 was a great summer and we wish our campers were still here. After all, nothing is more fun than camp with animal-touching, games, teambuilding and new adventures every day! Summer campers are resuming their school year duties, but rest assured, Marine Science Institute hasn’t been idle. Every day Monday through Friday and some Saturdays too, MSI hosts schools near and far for a variety of marine science programs. Almost daily we have a Shoreside program at our facility in Redwood City and 1-2 Discovery Voyages aboard the R/V Robert G. Brownlee, our 90-foot research vessel. MSI also often brings animals and marine science to schools. We offer a plethora of other programs that may be runn

Bring the Wonders of Watersheds Alive For Students

Water and its availability (or lack of availability during droughts) has always been tied to California’s history, population growth and economy – making it an important environmental education topic for today’s students. From canoeing in a slough to wading in a creek, one of California’s most important and limited resources comes alive in Marine Science Institute’s (MSI) inquiry-driven, multiple-exposure program called Wonders of Watersheds. Students learn what a watershed is, its importance, and then explore MSI’s local Redwood Creek watershed to discover how humans depend on it and influence it. Wonders of Watersheds is designed for students 6th grade and up. Through the Wonders of Waters

Creature Feature: Enjoy Stargazing Above and Below the Water

With the November starry nights of the Leonid Meteor Shower (Nov. 16-18), this is the perfect time to look down at the starry flounder (Platichthys stellatus) – a flat fish found in the San Francisco Bay and part of Marine Science Institute’s teaching curriculum. A favorite among marine and environmental educators, the starry flounder is easily identified by the youngest of students. The alternating bars of black and white-to-yellow-to-orange coloring on its dorsal, anal and caudal fins are distinct features used in identification. Patches of rough star-shaped scales (tubercles) are scattered on the eyed-side of the fish giving it its name. A favorite among marine and environmental educators

Marine Science in the News: plastic marine debris STINKS

A recent study out of University of California, Davis examined one of the largest groups of animals largely affected by plastics: seabirds. The research team examined ocean-faring birds and why they confuse marine plastic with food. Turns out, the answer is an olfactory trap! Figure 1. Petrels are severely affected by plastic consumption. They have a strong sense of smell used for hunting. Photo: JJ Harrison Plastic marine debris emits a sulfurous compound scent that some seabirds have relied on for thousands of years to tell them where to find food. Plastics in the ocean become coated with algae which releases a chemical cue called dimethyl sulfide, or DMS. This chemical cue is released whe

Marine Science in the News: plastic marine debris STINKS

A recent study out of University of California, Davis examined one of the largest groups of animals largely affected by plastics: seabirds. The research team examined ocean-faring birds and why they confuse marine plastic with food. Turns out, the answer is an olfactory trap! Figure 1. Petrels are severely affected by plastic consumption. They have a strong sense of smell used for hunting. Photo: JJ Harrison Plastic marine debris emits a sulfurous compound scent that some seabirds have relied on for thousands of years to tell them where to find food. Plastics in the ocean become coated with algae which releases a chemical cue called dimethyl sulfide, or DMS. This chemical cue is released whe

Marine Science Camp 2017 Series: 23 Years in the Making

Marine Science Camp turns 23 next summer! Beginning in 1994, Marine Science Camp’s inaugural year had camps offered for just two weeks, had a staff of two and had a total of 28 campers enrolled. Now, Marine Science Camp is offered for 9 weeks and has 18 full-time staff for a capacity of 138 campers each week! In 2016, there were 1086 campers throughout the summer who touched marine animals, performed science experiments on our research vessel in the San Francisco Bay, and learned about the incredible habitats in our local marine ecosystems. Left: Advanced Camp from 1996. Right: The R/V Robert G. Brownlee, commissioned in 1998, was designed and built to MSI specifications. It replaced the Inl

Marine Science Camp 2017 Series: 23 Years in the Making

Marine Science Camp turns 23 next summer! Beginning in 1994, Marine Science Camp’s inaugural year had camps offered for just two weeks, had a staff of two and had a total of 28 campers enrolled. Now, Marine Science Camp is offered for 9 weeks and has 18 full-time staff for a capacity of 138 campers each week! In 2016, there were 1086 campers throughout the summer who touched marine animals, performed science experiments on our research vessel in the San Francisco Bay, and learned about the incredible habitats in our local marine ecosystems. Left: Advanced Camp from 1996. Right: The R/V Robert G. Brownlee, commissioned in 1998, was designed and built to MSI specifications. It replaced the Inl

Afternoon Ecology: Week 6, Dive Deep: A Depth of Darkness

A commonly known fact is that we know more about space and the solar system, expanding billions of miles from earth, than we know about our own ocean! Deep sea exploration has been happening since the mid 1800's, that’s over 150 years, but we are still learning and discovering new information each day. The depths of the oceans reach, averages 12,100 feet or 2.3 miles (the Challenger Deep is the deepest spot at 36,200 feet or 6.85 miles - noaa), a considerably shorter distance than that of space. So why is it so much more difficult to explore? Darkness. The deeper you go into the ocean, the harder it is for the sun’s rays to penetrate the water. There are no stars giving light to what’s belo

Afternoon Ecology: Week 5, Sharks: It's SHARK WEEK at MSI!

Everyone looks forward to Shark Week each year, and it was no different for the kids of our Afternoon Ecology program. They each showed up excited and eager to learn about the cartilaginous fish that patrol our oceans. Sharks are a subgroup of fish, characterized by their skeleton made of cartilage opposed to bone and many more gill slits (5-7 on either side of their head). They also have a lot more teeth than most bony fish. Sharks are believed to have an infinite possibility of teeth and have multiple rows of replacement teeth ready to move forward once one falls out. This week we began the day by discussing these unique characteristics and how they differ from last week’s headliner, bony

Marine Science in the News: a groundbreaking decision for Antarctica's Ross Sea

One month ago we posted a blog about Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in Hawaii, a recently established Marine Protected Area (MPA) that covers 582,578 square miles. Well now our planet has a new MPA to take the title of the largest protected area on Earth: the Ross Sea in Antarctica (Fig. 1)! Figure 1. The Ross Sea in Antarctica has become the world's largest area of protected land, covering 2% of the Southern Ocean. Image source: New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade/Antarctic Ocean Alliance/The Pew Charitable Trusts. After 5 years of debate, 24 countries and the European Union have declared that the Ross Sea in Antarctica will become the largest MPA. 600,000 square m

Marine Science in the News: a groundbreaking decision for Antarctica's Ross Sea

One month ago we posted a blog about Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in Hawaii, a recently established Marine Protected Area (MPA) that covers 582,578 square miles. Well now our planet has a new MPA to take the title of the largest protected area on Earth: the Ross Sea in Antarctica (Fig. 1)! Figure 1. The Ross Sea in Antarctica has become the world's largest area of protected land, covering 2% of the Southern Ocean. Image source: New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade/Antarctic Ocean Alliance/The Pew Charitable Trusts. After 5 years of debate, 24 countries and the European Union have declared that the Ross Sea in Antarctica will become the largest MPA. 600,000 square m

Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Archive
Search By Tags
Follow Us
For Print

Subscribe for Updates

ADDRESS

500 Discovery Parkway

Redwood City, CA 94063

info@sfbaymsi.org

Tel: 650-364-2760

Click here for directions

facebook fish logo.png
instagram.png
Twitter fish logo.png
linkin.png

Marine Science Institute is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) not for profit organization. Federal Tax ID# 94-1719649

© 2020 All Rights Reserved  

Inspiring respect and stewardship for the marine environment through experiential learning

Thank you to our generous supporters who donated more than $25,000
kabcenell_logo
westpoint harbor
noaa1
Bohannon Foundation
Morgan Fam Fdn
HSF_logo_horiz_RGB_large crop 4
lesherlogo
JVLF Logo