This blog is from students at Oregon State University studying marine biology and ecology at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon
Thursday, April 12, 2012
Much Ado About Invertebrates
Wednesday was a day filled with much learning and a night of much fun. We began the day learning about our spiny little friends, the Echinoderms. Fun Fact: If you are facing an infestation of starfish in your clam bed, do not chop them up into tiny little pieces. In a few hours you will be facing an army of those critters so dense you might as well relocate your operation. After a short break we dove into our closest invertebrate relatives, the Chordates.
The rest of the day was spent prepping for the night to follow. Everyone was extremely creative in presenting their favorite invertebrate. There was signing, dancing, poetry, and even some crying. Alas poor Molly, I knew her well.
There was much to nom that night. Cake, coffee, and cookies, Oh my! There were many creative demonstrations of edible nudibranchs and barnacles. We even had a tasty jellyfish to sample.
After our presentations were over, the night took a serious turn. Itchung Cheung waxed eloquent about the plight of the very endangered Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus. We learned of the trials and tribulations this rare species face. From habitat destruction by loggers, and competition by invasive species, this critter is hanging on by a mere sucker. Please we urge you, contact your local senator, form rallies, file an internet petition. Do what you can to help protect this noble creature. For more info on how you can help protect the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus visit http://zapatopi.net/treeoctopus/.