[UW Today] New many-toothed clingfish discovered with help of digital scans

from UW Today, April 17, 2017. Note: Adam Summers teaches regularly at Friday Harbor Labs, and he is scheduled to teach BIOL 467: Comparative Animal Physiology at FHL in autumn 2017. You can apply for fall quarter at FHL now, with an early enrollment deadline of May 15.

The only two known specimens were found on museum shelves, where they had sat for 40 years.

A set of curious researchers, state-of-the-art visual technology and a bit of good luck helped find a new fish whose tooth collection could put a shark to shame.

Scientists at the University of Washington, Texas A&M University and the Western Australian Museum have discovered and named a new genus and species of clingfish after stumbling upon a specimen preserved in a jar dating back to the 1970s. The fish was unmistakably different from the other 160 known clingfishes, named for the disc on their bellies that can summon massive sticking power in wet, slimy environments.

The researchers named the new species “duckbilled clingfish” (Nettorhamphos radula) for its broad, flat snout ― not unlike the bill of a duck ― that houses an impressive number of tiny, conical teeth.

A detailed description of the new genus and species was published April 14 in the journal Copeia.“This fish has characteristics we just haven’t seen before in other clingfish. It’s the teeth that really gave away the fact that this is a new species,” said lead author Kevin Conway, a fish taxonomist and associate professor at Texas A&M University.

Scientists, including co-author Adam Summers of the University of Washington’s Friday Harbor Laboratories, are interested in clingfish for their ability to stick to rough surfaces. The finger-sized fish uses suction forces to hold up to 150 times its own body weight. Understanding the biomechanics of these fish could be useful in designing devices and instruments to be used in surgery, or to tag and track whales in the ocean.

Conway and co-author Glenn Moore of Western Australian Museum discovered the new clingfish while looking through specimens preserved in jars at the museum in Welshpool, Australia. It’s common for unknown specimens collected during surveys to be registered and shelved until an expert has the time, and interest, to take a closer look. This specimen was caught off the coast of Southern Australia in 1977. Even though the fish is only as big as a pinky finger, its unique teeth structure caught their attention.

[read the full article at UW Today]


Autumn Quarter at Friday Harbor Labs

Hyejoo Ro is junior pursuing a B.S. with a major in Aquatic & Fishery Sciences and a minor in Marine Biology. She spent the entire autumn quarter 2016 at the UW’s marine field station taking courses under the ‘Marine Biology Quarter’. Friday Harbor Labs is now accepting applications for autumn 2017 courses. Courses are available for students at any level with an interest in taking a full schedule of courses in a unique setting on the Salish Sea. Find out more at the new Friday Harbor Labs website.

The dock at FHLThe Salish Sea is a unique environment. Friday Harbor is a wonderful place to explore the diverse array of marine life that the Pacific Northwest has to offer. Not only does Friday Harbor Labs immerse you to a beautiful environment, but also provides students with a plethora of resources for marine sciences. I had the chance to spend fall quarter of my sophomore year that the Labs. While I was at Friday Harbor, I was enrolled in the marine biology quarter.

I took classes that fulfilled my major requirements, and explored what it takes to conduct research in the marine sciences field. The classes were a unique experience at Friday Harbor Labs because of the small, and intimate class sizes (no more than 16 students). This allowed me to get extra help when needed, and develop a strong connection with my professors and TA’s. Since we were located so close to the Puget Sound, many lab sessions involved going into the field to observe, and catch specimens (fish) to bring back to the Labs. This provided a better understanding of the organisms because we were able to see the habitat a fish was adapted to, and we were able to keep the fish alive, throughout the quarter, and observed how it moved and behaved.

Research was a whole other experience at the Labs. There are many different researchers at the Labs from all over the world. Friday Harbor Labs provided an intimate setting for me to speak with researchers about their projects, and how they got to be where they are. I was also able to participate in scientific research during the quarter. The research my team and I conducted was on eelgrass stressors, specifically small invertebrate grazers. We took part in the process of what it takes to conduct research in marine science. We quickly learned that the scientific method is not easy. Luckily we had a lot of support from our classmates, and most importantly, our mentors.

Overall Friday Harbor Labs is a community that serves to fulfill an immersive marine biology experience. I am glad that I took advantage of the facilities Friday Harbor Labs has to offer. I was in a place where people are passionate about the marine life, and willing to share passion and knowledge to students.


Friday Harbor Labs info session Thursday, 4/20 2:30pm MGH 171 E

Friday Harbor Labs Info Session: Autumn Quarter 2017

Spend autumn quarter studying at the UW’s marine field station in the San Juan Islands. Get started by attending the following info session:

INFO SESSION: Spring and Summer Quarter at Friday Harbor

When: Thursday, April 20, 2:30 – 3:30 pm

Where: Mary Gates Hall Center for Experiential Learning (MGH 171 E)

REGISTER: tinyurl.com/FHLautumn17

Learn more about what spending a quarter studying full time in the San Juan Islands can mean for you. Courses are available for students starting their exploration of marine biology up to senior undergraduates. Meet some of our teaching faculty and learn how to apply and fund your quarter at ‘FHL’.

FHL Autumn 2017 courses list

Why Study at Friday Harbor Labs?

 

  •      Explore the marine environment of the Salish Sea where your classroom is a marine preserve, and the boats are just steps away from your dorm.
  •      Fall courses for students at all levels and majors: intro marine biology, creative writing, environmental literature, and oceanography are just some of the topics.
  •      Get to know your teachers with class sizes frequently less than 20 students.

 

Courses may be applied to a Minor in Marine Biology. Check with your major adviser to see if they can apply to your major.

Early Admissions Application Deadline for Autumn Quarter is May 15


New Friday Harbor Labs Website Launches

The new and improved FHL website just launched, and you can visit it now at fhl.uw.edu. The application deadline for autumn quarter courses is May 15, so start exploring the site now to learn more.


[Tide Bites] Red rock crabs: the Dungeness’ grouchy cousins

This article comes from “Tide Bites”, the monthly newsletter of UW Friday Harbor Laboratories. “Red rock crabs: the Dungeness’ grouchy cousins” by Sylvia Yamada and Scott Groth: read the full article at the FHL website.

Adult crabs that were trapped under the FHL docks for the mark-recapture study.

Native red rock crabs (Cancer productus) are important predators on protected rocky nearshore communities from Alaska to Baja California. While they are harvested recreationally, they have not been as well studied as their commercially-valuable cousin, the Dungeness crab. Red rock crabs are abundant on semi-protected rock and boulder beaches where the substrate is composed of sand and shell gravel and where the salinity remains high. They have voracious appetites, feeding on a wide variety of species including barnacles, mussels, clams, oysters, snails, worms and sea cucumbers. Adults are highly mobile and are known to move into the high intertidal during flood tides to forage. We decided to piece together the life cycle of the red rock crab by compiling what was learned through various studies carried out on different life stages at Friday Harbor Laboratories.

[read the full article]


[Tide Bites] Scanning All Fish!

This article comes from “Tide Bites”, the monthly newsletter of UW Friday Harbor Laboratories. “Scanning All Fish!”, by Adam Summers, with Kory Evans-Jackson and Malorie Hayes: read the full article at the FHL website.

Friday Harbor Labs
CT scan of an African Jae barb.

Recently, FHL became home to the Karel F. Liem Bio-Imaging Center. The centerpiece of the shared research facility is a very capable micro-source CT scanner from Bruker, a model 1173. The scanner can image radio-dense tissue at resolution as fine as 5 microns, and because of variable magnification geometry it can also image specimens about the size of two grapefruits. Having the machine right down the hall from my office led to experimentation with high-speed workflow. And that led to a project called #scanAllFish. Born from a series of tweets from @fishguy_FHL, the idea is to CT-scan every species of fish and put all the data up on the web for everyone to access free of charge. We aim to democratize CT data and ensure that in this corner of vertebrate comparative morphology, access to a scanner is not a competitive advantage. The Foundations who donated the bulk of the money to buy the machine asked that it be available to anyone who is visiting FHL, free of charge. This generosity enables the #scanAllFish project. Our strategy is to offer scan time to scientists who have a large diversity of species they want scanned. They bring lots of specimens and a small team to the Labs and spend an intensive few days or weeks scanning everything they are interested in. People have come from around the country to take advantage of the offer, and in the process we have scanned over 1,200 species of fishes. You can read more about the project by searching the web for #scanAllFish — it has made a small media splash. If you’d like to help support Adam’s goal of scanning all fish, you can donate to the Karel F Liem Fish Biology Endowment which supports the Karel F. Liem Bio-Imaging Facility at FHL.

[read the full story at FHL Tide Bites #42]


Three Seas Program (Northeastern University)

For over 30 years, the Three Seas Program has provided a training ground for aspiring marine scientists. The two semester program provides intensive training in three ecologically diverse settings at world-class locations with faculty members who are leaders in their field. Students have the opportunity to explore the intertidal ecosystem of Northeastern US, work with tropical species native to Panama, and learn about fishes and mammals of the Pacific Northwest.
The Three Seas Program has undergone significant growth in the past year.  We are now able to expand our undergraduate cohort to include students from institutions outside of Northeastern University.  We are reaching out to you with the attached letter, pamphlet, and flyer so that you may pass this information on to any undergraduate students you think would be interested in participating in the Three Seas Program.  If you would like hard copies of any of our materials, we’d be happy to send them over to you.
We are currently accepting applications for students who wish to join the Spring 2018 undergraduate class. We will begin reviewing applications in March but will continue to accept applications on a rolling basis after that.  Please share my contact information with any students you think may be interested as I am happy to connect with students to answer any questions they may have about the logistics of the Three Seas Program.

[Tide Bites] Sketching Science in the San Juans

This article comes from “Tide Bites”, the monthly newsletter of UW Friday Harbor Laboratories. “Sketching Science in the San Juans”, by Andrea Dingeldein: Read the full article at the FHL website.

A collection of interpretive panel illustrations for the Fernald Lab tank, Friday Harbor Laboratories. Created using a combination of watercolor, gouache, and digital media.

…You may be wondering how someone like me finds herself in the position to pursue a career in science illustration. I can tell you there is no one clear-cut path. All science illustrators have their own unique stories of how they arrived at this dual-disciplined field, but we also have one thing in common. We all share a love and appreciation for nature and a passion for capturing and sharing that with other people. I always found myself torn between art and science: I double-majored in studio art and marine biology at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington for my undergraduate degree, and then went on to obtain my M.S. in marine biology. During my master’s, I discovered that I was more skilled at creating illustrations to communicate my research than I was at carrying out data collection and interpretation. Therefore, following my master’s, I found my way into the Science Illustration Graduate Certificate Program at California State University, Monterey Bay. The program’s curriculum places emphasis on creating illustrations that are scientifically accurate and also organized in a way that makes the information contained within them highly accessible to the public. After completing nine months of coursework, students are required to pursue a ten-week internship in the field of science illustration. Having previously attended classes at Friday Harbor Laboratories as an undergraduate, I was aware of FHL’s tradition of using of art in the classroom as a tool to teach science (a method that has unfortunately been forgotten at many scientific research institutions). Because of this strong connection between art and science at the Labs, I was convinced that FHL would be the perfect host institution for a science illustration internship.

[Read the full story at FHL Tide Bites #41]


Friday Harbor Labs Info Session 1/17

Friday Harbor Labs Info Session: Spring/Summer Quarter 2017

Spend spring or summer quarter studying at the UW’s marine field station in the San Juan Islands. Get started by attending the following info session:

INFO SESSION: Spring and Summer Quarter at Friday Harbor

When: Tuesday 1/17, 10:30 – 11:30 AM

Where: Marine Sciences Building Room 123

RSVP: https://catalyst.uw.edu/webq/survey/jkob/320432

Learn more about what spending a quarter studying full time in the San Juan Islands can mean for you. Courses are available for students starting their exploration of marine biology up to senior undergraduates. Meet some of our teaching faculty and learn how to apply and fund your quarter at ‘FHL’.

FHL anemone

Why Study at Friday Harbor Labs?

  •      Explore the marine environment of the Salish Sea where your classroom is a marine preserve, and the boats are just steps away from your dorm.
  •      Fall courses for students at all levels and majors: intro marine biology, creative writing, environmental literature, and oceanography are just some of the topics.
  •      Get to know your teachers with class sizes frequently less than 20 students.

View of FHL from the water

Explore FHL

WATCH

“A Very Sticky Fish”: award winning video created by autumn 2015 students in the FHL 305: Biology of Fishes course.

Student profile of Susan Harris (’15) and her experience with FHL

READ

Working and Living at Friday Harbor Labs

Information about the town of Friday Harbor

Spring 2017 course list

Summer 2017 course list

TALK

UW Marine Biology Adviser: Joe Kobayashi: jkob@uw.edu

Friday Harbor Labs Adviser: Stacy Markman: fhladmin@uw.edu

Courses may be applied to a Minor in Marine Biology. Check with your major adviser to see if they can apply to your major.

Application deadline for spring quarter is February 1.