Class on September 25 2018

Lucie led a field trip to Jan Rines' lab so that students could investigate sea water samples under the microscope. Students were asked to think about the food web for Narragansett Bay as they explored three samples taken earlier in the day (as the weather was stormy, students did not participate in the sample collection process but Lucie demonstrated the methods and equipment used). The samples included:

1. A 25 micron (and larger) sample of water from the URI Bay campus dock on Narragansett Bay.
2. A 10 micron (and larger) sampe of water from Greenwich Cove
3. A 125 micron (and larger) sample of water from Narragansett Bay

Microscopes used included a stereoscopic microscope to see the critters in a Petri dish environment and a compound light microscope to see individual organisms on a slide.

Lucie identified the species below as existing in the samples (those with green labels were seen by this author):

Students were asked to hypothesize as to what is the object represented by the image at the bottom (with the question mark nearby). Students were asked to watch the locomotion of the different organisms, especially the the dinoflagellates that display a unique combination of methods to move within a water column. The tintinnids also provided a mesmerizing array of behaviors.

Lucie asked students to decide which organisms were dead and which were alive. She also asked students to look for the chloroplast structures within an organism that suggested it was a primary producer. Students were able to see some chloroplasts through the use of the compound light microscope.

Jeremy made some notes regarding the Baird Symposium report reading students had done over the weekend before class. He asked that students continue to absorb that material as they prepared to create diagrams of the Narragansett Food web suggested by the field trip explorations under the microscope. Chris mentioned the work of Ted Smayda who had worked a career with small Narragansett Bay organisms starting in the mid-1950s. Many of his papers following the publications link of his memorial website are rich in context for our class.

Students were asked to prepare for Thursday's class that would continue to flush out details on the Narragansett Bay food web.