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Latest Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education Stories

Ocean's Most Abundant Organisms Have Clear Daily Cycles
2014-07-11 03:04:06

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Coordinated timing may have implications for energy transformation, ocean food web Imagine the open ocean as a microbial megacity, teeming with life too small to be seen. In every drop of water, hundreds of types of bacteria can be found.  Now scientists have discovered that communities of these ocean microbes have their own daily cycles—not unlike the residents of a bustling city who tend to wake up, commute, work, and eat at the same times....

Thriving Colonies Of Microbes Discovered In Ocean 'Plastisphere'
2013-06-27 15:28:13

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Scientists have discovered a diverse multitude of microbes colonizing and thriving on flecks of plastic that have polluted the oceans--a vast new human-made flotilla of microbial communities that they have dubbed the "plastisphere." In a study recently published online in Environmental Science & Technology, the scientists say the plastisphere represents a novel ecological habitat in the ocean and raises a host of questions: How will it change...

2013-06-25 10:49:25

A new chapter in the exploration of microbial life A research team led by Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences has discovered that marine microbes are adapted to very narrow and specialized niches in their environment. This may explain why so few of these microbes—usually less than 1%—can be grown for study in the laboratory. By utilizing new genetic tools, the researchers’ new ability to read and interpret genetic information from the remaining 99% will be pivotal in detecting and...

2011-10-28 04:22:16

Earth losing species more rapidly than scientists can understand the roles they play Earth is losing species more rapidly than scientists can understand the roles these species play and how they function. With this loss comes, biologists believe, lost opportunities to understand the history of life, to better predict the future of the living world and to make beneficial discoveries in the areas of food, fiber, fuel, pharmaceuticals and bio-inspired innovation. To characterize the...

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2011-01-05 07:25:00

There is a lot of plastic trash floating in the Pacific Ocean, but claims that the "Great Garbage Patch" between California and Japan is twice the size of Texas are grossly exaggerated, according to an analysis by an Oregon State University scientist. Further claims that the oceans are filled with more plastic than plankton, and that the patch has been growing tenfold each decade since the 1950s are equally misleading, pointed out Angelicque "Angel" White, an assistant professor of...

2008-09-18 03:00:08

When I attend a middle school or high school career day, I often have a student tell me, "I want to be an oceanographer." But as we talk more, I realize that what the student really wants to be is a marine biologist. Or sometimes it's the other way around - the student says "marine biology" when he or she is thinking of oceanography. What's the difference? Basically, it comes down to this - an oceanographer studies the oceans, a marine biologist studies marine life. Oceanography is the...


Word of the Day
sough
  • A murmuring sound; a rushing or whistling sound, like that of the wind; a deep sigh.
  • A gentle breeze; a waft; a breath.
  • Any rumor that engages general attention.
  • A cant or whining mode of speaking, especially in preaching or praying; the chant or recitative characteristic of the old Presbyterians in Scotland.
  • To make a rushing, whistling, or sighing sound; emit a hollow murmur; murmur or sigh like the wind.
  • To breathe in or as in sleep.
  • To utter in a whining or monotonous tone.
According to the OED, from the 16th century, this word is 'almost exclusively Scots and northern dialect until adopted in general literary use in the 19th.'
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