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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

To Fish Or Not To Fish? What Effect Do California’S Marine Protected Areas Have On Up-And-Coming Kellet’S Whelk Fishery?, Jennifer Greene Oct 2016

To Fish Or Not To Fish? What Effect Do California’S Marine Protected Areas Have On Up-And-Coming Kellet’S Whelk Fishery?, Jennifer Greene

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Kellet’s whelk, Kelletia kelletii, were observed at sample sites throughout their range from Baja California, Mexico, to Monterey, CA to determine patterns of population density. Sample sites in each region were either located within California marine protected areas where take of the Kellet’s whelk in prohibited, or in non-protected areas where the whelks can be fished both commercially and recreationally. Kellet’s whelk population density was compared between all MPA and non-MPA sample sites. These mean densities were also found for sites in Santa Barbara and San Diego near active fishing ports and compared to data from the ...


Automated Detection Of Deep-Sea Animals, Dallas J. Hollis, Duane Edgington, Danelle Cline Jul 2016

Automated Detection Of Deep-Sea Animals, Dallas J. Hollis, Duane Edgington, Danelle Cline

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

The Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute routinely deploys remotely operated underwater vehicles equipped with high definition cameras for use in scientific studies. Utilizing a video collection of over 22,000 hours and the Video Annotation and Reference System, we have set out to automate the detection and classification of deep-sea animals. This paper serves to explore the pitfalls of automation and suggest possible solutions to automated detection in diverse ecosystems with varying field conditions. Detection was tested using a saliency-based neuromorphic selective attention algorithm. The animals that were not detected were then used to tune saliency parameters. Once objects are ...


Winter Freeze Decreases The Emergence Of Fauna And Flora In California Vernal Pools, Korena S. Hendryx, Jamie Kneitel Aug 2015

Winter Freeze Decreases The Emergence Of Fauna And Flora In California Vernal Pools, Korena S. Hendryx, Jamie Kneitel

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Impacts of global climate change is observed in many ecological systems. Temporary aquatic ecosystems, including California vernal pools, are especially sensitive to climatic variation, but most species are adapted to the annual fluctuations in precipitation and temperature. Since vernal pools experience an inundation and desiccation every year, species that occupy the ecosystem have adaptations to this cycle. Many species survive drought by creating resting eggs to then re-emerge upon inundation However, climate changes outside the typical range may have deleterious effects on these populations. Moreover, climate variation can have secondary effects on the community. For example, the amount of precipitation ...


Sediment Loss Of Santa Rosa Island Slopes: An Erosional Study, Michael Perez Aug 2015

Sediment Loss Of Santa Rosa Island Slopes: An Erosional Study, Michael Perez

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Ranching began on Santa Rosa Island in the 1840’s, consequently introducing nonnative megafauna that put novel selective grazing pressures on endemic plant species. Their movement patterns also altered sediment integrity as the land was denuded of any stabilizing vegetation. Dense groves of island oak (Q. tomentella) are known to aid in sediment deposition and retention. The groves also function to collect water during periods of intense fog that are common to the island. This experiment sought to quantify the volume of sediment that has been lost on a south facing slope in the middle of the island that contains ...


Monitoring Abundance Of Carcinus Maenas Developmental Stages In Seadrift Lagoon, Andrea M. Fieber Aug 2015

Monitoring Abundance Of Carcinus Maenas Developmental Stages In Seadrift Lagoon, Andrea M. Fieber

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Able to tolerate a wide range of habitats, temperatures, and salinities, Carcinus maenas thrives in much of its non-native range, out-competing native crabs for resources while diminishing food supplies for a variety of marine and estuarine organisms. In Seadrift Lagoon, a manmade inlet of Bolinas Lagoon in Marin County, California, green crabs comprise a significant portion of benthic fauna, and trapping efforts began in 2009 to eradicate them. We analyzed several years of trapping data to monitor demographic changes for this closed population, performed larvae and megalopae sampling with pot scrubbers, and counted eggs on ovigerous females captured in Seadrift ...


Sea Turtle Hatchling Sex Ratios Determined Via Hormone Assay: Implications Of Climate Change?, William A. Hilton, Matthew Godfrey, Camryn D. Allen Jan 2015

Sea Turtle Hatchling Sex Ratios Determined Via Hormone Assay: Implications Of Climate Change?, William A. Hilton, Matthew Godfrey, Camryn D. Allen

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Currently all species of sea turtles are listed as threatened or endangered with extinction under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Due to their status, sea turtle conservation is a high priority for the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. One major challenge conservationists face is the lack of a noninvasive, cost efficient method for determining the sex of hatchling sea turtles. Because secondary sex characteristics (i.e. males have longer tails) are not evident until turtles start to reach sexual maturity, the sex of hatchlings is not easily determined. The least invasive ...


Estimating Migration Rates Between Populations Of Zostera Marina In The San Francisco Bay, Elizabeth S. Gutierrez Sep 2014

Estimating Migration Rates Between Populations Of Zostera Marina In The San Francisco Bay, Elizabeth S. Gutierrez

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Eelgrass (Zostera marina) is a highly clonal marine angiosperm that can also reproduce sexually through flowering and seed formation. In a previous study, Fst values from six microsatellite loci suggested that a perennial San Francisco Bay subpopulation at Point Molate (Richmond, California) was able to recover from a drastic 2006 die-off through seed recruitment from neighboring eelgrass subpopulations, changing its reproductive strategy from clonal to sexual. Although Fst measures continue to be widely used in population genetics, the assumptions under which they operate are not always appropriate given certain circumstances, such small population sizes and/or asymmetrical migration rates. Our ...


Jellyfish Throwdown: Invasive Versus Native, Brooke Bemowski, Trisha Huynh, Lindsay J. Sullivan, Wim Kimmerer Aug 2014

Jellyfish Throwdown: Invasive Versus Native, Brooke Bemowski, Trisha Huynh, Lindsay J. Sullivan, Wim Kimmerer

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

The San Francisco Bay Estuary is home to many species of marine and wildlife that create a delicate ecological balance. Invasive jellyfish introduced to the bay though cargo shipping are believed to be competing with the endangered delta smelt for the same food source of copepods. Samples of zooplankton were taken from high and low salinity zones in the San Francisco Bay over three years in months June through February to correlate with the peak of the jellyfish lifecycle. The preserved samples are looked through and jellyfish are removed and recorded. The species of jellyfish is determined using features such ...


Jellyfish Identification And Quantification In The San Francisco Estuary, Amalia Borson, Lindsay L. Sullivan, Wim Kimmerer Aug 2013

Jellyfish Identification And Quantification In The San Francisco Estuary, Amalia Borson, Lindsay L. Sullivan, Wim Kimmerer

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

As potential predators and competitors of plankton-eating fish, jellyfish have the potential to negatively impact fish populations. Jellyfish were collected weekly with plankton tows from the RombergTiburonCenterpier in Tiburon, CA. Since some jellyfish were too small to identify, one tow was collected and preserved to record abundances, and a second tow was collected to rear jellyfish until distinguishing characteristics were visible enough for identification. Jellyfish in the preserved tows were then identified, measured, and counted, and their abundance (number m-3) was calculated. Jellyfish from the second tows were reared in plastic buckets that were lightly bubbled using aquarium pumps ...


Big Babies, Big Mammas?: Relationship Of Leatherback Hatchling Size And Mother Size, Shane Morales, Violet Campbell, Kelly Stewart Aug 2013

Big Babies, Big Mammas?: Relationship Of Leatherback Hatchling Size And Mother Size, Shane Morales, Violet Campbell, Kelly Stewart

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Individual leatherback hatchlings vary in size when compared to individuals from other nests, as well as individuals from the same nest. It is thought that many factors affect hatchling size but that one of the most influential factors is maternal size. Of all the aspects of a mother which could affect hatchling size, evidence for question concerning influence of mother size is determinable within the field using minimal tools and basic statistical analysis. If a direct correlation exists between mother size and hatchling size then the claim can be made that larger mothers produce larger offspring while smaller mothers produce ...


Developing Monitoring Methods For Leptasterias Spp. As Sentinel Species In Detecting Local Environmental Changes, Zachary Sturbaum, Kathryn Nuessly, Riley J. Smith, C. Sarah Cohen Aug 2012

Developing Monitoring Methods For Leptasterias Spp. As Sentinel Species In Detecting Local Environmental Changes, Zachary Sturbaum, Kathryn Nuessly, Riley J. Smith, C. Sarah Cohen

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Leptasterias spp., a six-rayed sea star, is found in rocky intertidal habitats ranging from Alaska to central California. Leptasterias spp. can be monitored on a broad scale throughout their range by a variety of means using timed counts and random plot censusing in order to detect both large-scale and local-level changes in the environment due to climate change, land-based human activity, or other environmental events. Leptasterias brood their young externally until the embryos grow into fully developed juveniles. These juveniles disperse by crawling away, limiting their dispersal potential. This localized dispersal provides an opportunity to use Leptasterias spp. as sentinel ...


A Genetic Survey Of English Sole Populations In The Salish Sea, Elizabeth S. Gutierrez, Gary A. Winans, Jon Baker, Amanda Cope Aug 2012

A Genetic Survey Of English Sole Populations In The Salish Sea, Elizabeth S. Gutierrez, Gary A. Winans, Jon Baker, Amanda Cope

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

This summer I interned at the Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle, WA and participated in NOAA’s Salish Sea Project. The Salish Sea Project’s goal is to identify genetically distinctive groups of species in the Salish Sea that may have unique evolutionary and/or adaptive backgrounds. These findings will allow NOAA to promote and monitor the natural production of species in the Salish Sea, to select representative populations for experimental work regarding pollution, ocean acidification and climate change, to contribute to managing the ecosystem for intra- and inter-species diversity, and to help make informed decisions about adaptive management ...


Interspecies Comparison Of Αii-Spectrin Abundance Between Chinook Salmon And Steelhead, Brielle D. Kemis, Ann L. Miracle, Katie A. Wagner, Christa M. Woodley Aug 2011

Interspecies Comparison Of Αii-Spectrin Abundance Between Chinook Salmon And Steelhead, Brielle D. Kemis, Ann L. Miracle, Katie A. Wagner, Christa M. Woodley

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Salmonids, such as Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) and steelhead (O. mykiss), are a staple economic, recreational, tribal, and environmental resource, yet many populations are unsustainable. This study was part of a broad scale effort to monitor the impact of downstream migration obstacles on juvenile salmonid health and survival, which is an essential step towards increasing Smolt-to-Adult Return ratios (SARs). The objective of this study was to determine if juvenile Chinook salmon and steelhead exhibit differing quantities of alphaII-Spectrin Breakdown Products (SBDPs) over two consecutive spring migration periods, indicative of neurogenesis rate and/or biological response to head injury. AlphaII-Spectrin is ...


Contrasting Effects Of Flow On Adult And Juvenile Ascidian Life History Stages, Including The Global Invasive Didemnum Vexillum, Tren C. Kauzer, C Sarah Cohen Jan 2011

Contrasting Effects Of Flow On Adult And Juvenile Ascidian Life History Stages, Including The Global Invasive Didemnum Vexillum, Tren C. Kauzer, C Sarah Cohen

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Few studies have quantified a relationship between recruitment, growth, survival and flow with colonial filter feeders. In this study, the growth of D. vex and larval recruitment were evaluated under different local flow conditions in Half Moon Bay, California, USA. Tunicates were subjected to four different flow conditions, three of which included objects to differentially obstruct flow, and growth and recruitment were measured. A direct relationship was seen between increases in flow and adult growth, and an inverse relationship was seen between increases in flow and recruitment. These trends suggest that optimal flow conditions differ for juveniles and adults. The ...