Breadcrumb Home Human Connections Exploration http://ocean.si.edu/human-connections/exploration/collaborator-research Collaborator Research slideshow Collaborator Research Recent Antarctic expeditions, underwater volcano monitoring, studies of little-known transparent creatures, and other recent scientific research is being conducted by Ocean Portal Collaborators. Tags: Sharks Penguins Marshes Oil spills Earthquakes Scientists at work Alison Kock tags a shark Credit: © Andy Casagrande IV/Save Our Seas Save Our Seas scientist Alison Kock tags a great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) to gather data about their movements off the coast of South Africa. More about the great white shark can be found in our Great White Shark featured story. Emperor Penguins Credit: © Scripps Institution of Oceanography/UC San Diego Scripps scientist Gerald Kooyman's expeditions have documented climate-induced changes to emperor penguin habitat and impacts on how the penguins feed, breed, and raise their young in Antarctica. Learn more about life at the poles or check out this emperor penguin chick with mother. Diving in Guam Credit: University of Guam Marine Laboratory Dr. Valerie Paul is studying chemical defenses that may protect coral reefs from many species of herbivores that live on coral reefs. In this picture she is examining tropical seaweeds on northwestern Guam’s coral reefs. Dr. Paul is the director of the Smithsonian Marine Station (SMS) at Fort Pierce, Fla. Studying the Mid-Ocean Ridge Credit: David Butterfield/NOAA NOAA’s New Millennium Observatory (NeMO) was set up to study geologic, chemical, and biologic interactions along the mid-ocean ridge system. Learn more about NeMO and watch a video about underwater volcanoes. CO2 Marsh Study Credit: Kimbra Cutlip/Smithsonian Institution How do plants respond to rising CO2 levels? To find out, plant physiologist Bert Drake at SERC exposed marsh plants near the Chesapeake Bay to CO2 levels expected in 50 and 100 years. Different species and ecosystems respond differently—leaving uncertainty about the ability of plants to act as effective buffers against increases in atmospheric CO2. Learn more about Dr. Drake’s long-running field study. Saving Venice, Italy Credit: Scripps Institution of Oceanography/UC San Diego To protect Venice from rising seas, Dimitri Deheyn (Scripps Institution/UC San Diego Sediment Research Group) studied the environmental impact of dredging sediment from the waterways. Managers worldwide can apply the findings from the Venice, Italy, study to other threatened estuaries and wetlands. Read more about the research effort to help keep Venice dry. Antarctic Salps Credit: Lawrence Madin, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Climate and sea changes in the Southern Ocean create conditions that favor the growth of salps over krill, the latter of which are a vital food source for seals, whales, and penguins. Salps are filter-feeding tunicates that float through the water column, sometimes forming long salp chains, consuming phytoplankton and using jet propulsion to move. Read about their complex life history in “The Watery World of Salps," by Larry Madin of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Head to our blog to learn about how non-native tunicates and other marine invasive species are threatening Alaska's coastline. Seafloor Earthquakes Study Credit: Dana Yoerger/Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Geophysicist Jian Lin of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and chief U.S. scientist aboard the Chinese oceanographic ship DaYang Yihao studied the earthquake site that triggered 2004’s Indian Ocean tsunami.Read an interview with Dr. Lin in Oceanus magazine.Learn about earthquake forecasting in Dr. Lin’s article “Earthshaking Events”. Ocean “Pingos” Credit: Charles Paull c. 2003 MBARI Geologist Charles Paull (Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute) investigates geologic features similar to pingos (Earth covered ice mounds found in the Arctic) on the Arctic Ocean floor where methane—a powerful greenhouse gas—bubbles through sediments and forms hundreds of low hills. Read an MBARI feature story “Of Pingos and Pockmarks” and find out more about Charles Paull’s research. Underwater Archaeology Credit: Smithsonian Institution Geo-archaeologist Jean-Daniel Stanley studies ancient settlements submerged near Egypt’s Nile Delta. Analyzing how natural and human-induced processes caused their sinking may help us protect vulnerable coastal cities such as Dhaka, New Orleans, and Venice. Read the Smithsonian magazine article about Dr. Stanley’s discoveries. Dazzling New Sea Urchin Species Credit: Encyclopedia of Life Simon Coppard, a post-doctoral research fellow at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama and an Encyclopedia of Life Rubenstein Fellow specializing in echinoids often uncovers new species during his research. In 2006, he and a fellow scientist discovered and described Coelopleurus exquisitus, a previously unknown sea urchin species from New Caledonia in the South Pacific. Protecting Arctic habitat Credit: Samuel Gagnon Human activity is increasing in the Arctic marine environment due to climate change. To help the most vulnerable areas, the Global Marine Program of IUCN, along with partners, convened a series of workshops aimed at enhancing ecosystem-based management and identifying biologically or ecologically important or vulnerable habitats. Burgerbukta, a bay in Svalbard, Norway, seen here, is being managed for ecosystem protection. Oil Samples in the Gulf Credit: J. Short, Oceana, and S. Senner, Ocean Conservancy Oceana’s Pacific Science Director Jeff Short, an environmental chemist who formerly worked for NOAA on the Exxon Valdez spill, collects samples of mousse oil in the Gulf of Mexico from the Deepwater Horizon spill. The sample will be analyzed by Dr. Ed Overton at LSU to establish the chemical profile of the oil. The resulting “fingerprint” will help determine the origin of other samples. Taxonomic studies Credit: Encyclopedia of Life Melissa Frey, Encyclopedia of Life (EOL) Rubenstein Fellow, examines a Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas) on a chilly day in Sidney, British Columbia. In addition to holding an EOL Fellowship, Melissa is a Research Associate at the Royal BC Museum, where she continues to engage in taxonomic studies.