Posted by: Jill | July 13, 2009

The Perks of Being a Marine Biologist

It’s an unspoken rule among marine biologists that you must eat your study subject at least once.

This weekend my class spent a day at sea on a research vessel to gain experience with marine biology and oceanography research techniques.  We deployed several different types of sampling gear to collect organisms of various sizes at the surface, mid-water (~200 m) and seafloor (~500m).  The bottom trawl brought up all kinds of amazing deep sea creatures, like vampire fish with huge teeth, bioluminescent lures to attract prey, and special cells on their bellies that produce light so they don’t cast shadows and can hide from predators below.

The bottom trawl also brought up about a dozen jumbo prawns, which I generously offered to bring home and eat for dinner.  They were delicious – but what isn’t delicious with lots of butter and garlic?

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Responses

  1. im very interested in being a marine biologist. i have been since i was abou six and I am in seventh grade. how did you get going? and what are some good intern ideas.

  2. Hi Kelly,
    I’m glad you’re interested! Being a marine biologist is really fun and I also feel like I’m doing something important to make the world better.

    You’re already doing the most important thing: asking questions. My best advice is to learn as much as you can. Visit aquariums and zoos, read books and magazines about the ocean, watch the Blue Planet and Life television series.

    You could also look into volunteering at an aquarium or doing a marine biology summer camp (for example, in San Diego we have Sea Camp, http://www.seacamp.com).

    Good luck and keep up your interest in marine biology!


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