Saturday, December 1, 2007

Bruce's Top 20 Fish Picks of 2007 (Fish of the Marianas assignment)

Common names: Scientific Name: Location:

Tiger Shark Galeocerdo cuvier Outside reefs and sometimes inside Saipan’s lagoon

Manta Ray Manta birostris Often seen in deep waters around TIQ, SPN Lagoon

Giant Moray Gymnothorax javanicus Saipan’s Barrier Reef, Reef Patchs in Tinian and Rota

Estuarine stonefish Synanceia horrida Throughout the beaches of the CNMI

Giant trevally Caranx ignobilis Throughout the deep waters within and outside of the reefs

Pacific Double-saddle butterflyfish Chaetodon ulietensis Throughout the beaches of the CNMI

Emperor angelfish Pormacanthus imperator Throughout the beaches of the CNMI as well as the reefs

Twoband anemonefish Amphiprion bicinctus along the sea anemone on the reefs

Great Barracuda Sphyraena barracuda In and out of Lagoons, deep waters.

Bluebarred parrotfish Scarus ghobban In and around the reefs

Bluespine unicornfish Naso unicornis In, around and around reefs

Pacific Blue Tang Paracanthurus hepatus Around the reef

Forktail rabbitfish Siganus argenteus Around the reef

White-barred triggerfish Rhinecanthus aculeatus Around the reef and in the lagoon

Longhorn cowfish Lactoria cornuta Around the lagoon and reef

Solander’s sharpnose puffer Canthigaster solandri all over the reef and in lagoons

Harlequin snake eel Myrichthys colubrinus Inside of lagoons and around the reefs

Hawaiian lionfish Pterois sphex In holes of reefs

Red bass/ Red Snapper Lutjanus bohar deep waters in lagoons and outside re

Panther flounder Bothus pantherinus sandy beaches depending on their colors for camouflage

Coral Reefs!

1. How is each reef structure formed?

Fringing reefs are formed around a volcanic island that subsides completely.

Barrier reefs form when land masses sink, and fringing reefs become separated from shorelines by wide channels.

If the land mass is a small island, it may eventually disappear below the ocean surface, and the reef becomes an atoll. Atolls are reefs that surround a central lagoon. The result is several low coral islands around a lagoon. An atoll can also be formed when a the volcanoes completely blows up and is no longer visible.

2. Where is each reef structure found?

Fringing reefs border shorelines of continents and islands in tropical seas. (when no body of water is in between/separating the land and the reef)Fringing reefs are commonly found in the South Pacific Hawaiian Islands, and parts of the Caribbean.

Barrier reefs are common in the Caribbean and Indo-Pacific which occurs farther offshore. Here, the reef and island is separated by a body of water (lagoon).

Atolls commonly occur in the Indo- Pacific. They are found mostly as circular

3. Give examples of the types of corals found on reefs.

Hard, Stony, table, staghorn, mushroom, and hermatypic coral. (and many more!)

4. Give examples of competition, predation, and grazing.

Competition: Coral vs. Coral (For Space!)

Predation: A Killerwhale hunting seals

Grazing: Sea urchins eating kelp


1. What factors might account for the fact that the vast majority of atolls occur in the Indian and Pacific oceans and that atolls are rare in the Atlantic?

First, the waters are warm in the Indo-Pacific. therefore, coral reefs could survive. Again, Coral needs warm water. unlike the Atlantic Ocean, the waters there are cold. Next is that the Pacific Ocean is home to the Ring of Fire (chains of vocanic activity) which is one known main factor for making atolls.

2. Scientists predict that the ocean will get warmer and the sea level will rise as a result of an intensified greenhouse effect. How might this affect coral reefs?

The one thing about coral is that its very fragile! cold water would kill it just as water thats too warm or hot. So if the sea becomes warmer, then it would be possible to have coral reefs in the atlantic, but the ones in the pacific would die because the water will be too warm. Now if the sea level rises, then both oceans won't be capable of sustaining a coral reefs because coral would be too deep down in the water that it won't be able to capture sunlight needed for survival.

3. There are only a few reefs off the northeast coast of Brazil, even though it lies in the tropics. How would you explain this?

There are only a few reefs in the northeastern coast of Brazil simply because of erosion. There are numerous rivers that flow in and out of the area, depositing sedmient particles of dirt and rubble as well as human pollution. Also, during storms, it is known that the area gets flooded, dragging in more and more pollution and erosion out into the ocean. Only a few reefs in the area manages to stay alive.

1. All can be found throughout the Indo-Pacific
2. Fringing reefs, barrier reefs, and atolls are all related stages in the sequence of atoll reef formation
3. All could be found in warm waters
4. All were once a volcanoe.
5. All can sustain life.
1. Location
2. Fringing reefs are most common
3. Atolls are fully emerged.
4. Barrier reefs have open water in between land and itself.
5. Atolls are much older than barrier and fringing reefs.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Seafloor Spreading

Above: The Worlds Seafloor

Seafloor spreading (This is how the Mariana's Trench was formed)

Post the map and description of the following:

What is sea floor spreading?

occurs at mid-ocean ridges, where new oceanic crust is formed through volcanic activity and then gradually moves away from the ridge. Seafloor spreading helps explain continental drift in the theory of plate tectonics

What are some of the major land forms that are created from plate movement?

The seperation of land (ex. Pangaea into the 7 continents), trenches, mountains, canyons, and more.

How were the Mariana Islands formed?

constant vocanoe activities where the eruption cooled. Thosands of years in-the-making!

What evidence exists today that the plates are still moving and that the islands are ancient volcanoes?

Earthquakes and vocanoes, as well as the samples collected on atolls.

What is an atoll?

An atoll is an island of coral that encircles a lagoon partially or completely (sinking island)

Why are atolls mainly found on the Pacific?

Because of the ring of fire (many vocanoes in one area, gives a bigger chance of atolls), and most importantly, is because coral reefs grow survive on atolls, and in order to do so, they need warm water.

Pillow Star

Pillow Sea Star
Classification Kindom: Echinoderms
Phylum: Echinodermata
Class: Asteroidea (seastars)
Habitat: Shallow patch, barrier, and fringing reefs.
Food Source: may consume coral polyps, clams, and oysters; or any animal too slow to evade the attack (e.g. dying fish) or algae.
Description of life cycle: As same as a Starfish
How does it move: cannot move quickly. However, like starfish from genus Astropecten and Luidia are capable of rapid, creeping motion: "gliding" across the ocean floor. This motion results from their pointed tube feet adapted specially for excavating patches of sand.
Unique characteristics: Pillow seastar can right itself if rolled over by inflating half of its body until the tube feet can get a grip. As it grows, it loses its arms and becomes spherical. Starfish are capable of both sexual and asexual reproduction
Role in the ecosystem: These bottom dwellers play a crucial role in the ocean ecosystem, as prey when they are free-floating larvae and as predator when they reach adulthood. Few animals eat adult Pillow Stars, which are apparently neither palatable nor nutritious.

Genetics-Cell Cycle Questions

1. What is DNA?

2. What are the 4 bases?

  • Guanine
  • Cytosine
  • Adenine
  • Thymine

3. What 2 pieces of information did the scientists need to solve the elusive structure of DNA?

  • base-pair interactions
  • Genetic engineering

4. What are the specific base pairs?

5. How does the pairing rule effect the shape and structure of DNA?

  • The sequence of the pairings forms a code which holds genetic information. When the code is paired, each rung in the helix would become equal in length, and the sugar-phosphate backbone will smoothen.

6. What does the DNA do during cell division?

  • Cells stop dividing because the telomeres (protective bits of DNA on the end of a chromosome) become shorter with each division and eventually can no longer protect the chromosome.

7. How many base pairs does E. Coli have? How long does it take to replicate? How is the DNA packaged in the cell?

  • E. Coli has around 4 or more million base pairs. They can replicate in millions in minutes and billions a day. E. Coli is package tightly to a cell in condensed fashion.

8. How many base pairs does Human DNA have? How long does it take to replicate? How is the DNA packaged in the cell?

  • About 3 billion pairs in about a half to a full day. It is packaged in 23 distinct chromosome pairs that’s “Spiral” shaped.

1. What is RNA? How different is it from DNA?

2. How are the RNA messages formed?

  • Messenger RNA (mRNA) is single-stranded. Its sequence of nucleotides is called "sense" because it results in a gene product (protein). Normally, its unpaired nucleotides are "read" by transfer RNA anticodons as the ribosome proceeds to translate the message.

3. How are the RNA messages interpreted?

  • Codons, in groups of three nucleotides.

1. Describe cell cycle.

  • Cell’s chromosomes are divided between the two daughter cells, and cytokinesis, in which the cell's cytoplasm divides forming distinct cells. From here, the cells continue to divide by two in a repeated process.

2. What is nuclear division.

  • When the nucleus divides and engage with subphases

3. What is interphase.

  • Interphase is a phase of the cell cycle when the cells obtain nutrients.

4. Cytokinesis.

  • is the process when the cytoplasm of a single cell is divided to spawn two daughter cells

5. Homologous chromosomes.

6. Phases of mitosis (5 of them).

  • Interphase, Metaphase, Anaphase, Telophase, Cytokinesis

7. Phases of meiosis and how it is different from mitosis.

  • Prophase I , Metaphase I, Anaphase I, Telophase I, Prophase II , Metaphase II, Anaphase II, and Telophase II. Meiosis may start out the same as with mitosis, but then they eventually split once again after the first cytokinesis to form more chromosome 8.

8. Describe the process and purpose of crossing over.

  • Crossing over is a process when two chromosomes are paired up during prophase 1 of meiosis, and then the exchange of some portion of their DNA. Crossing over is mainly initiated in pachytene, before the synaptonemal complex develops, and is not completed until near the end of prophase 1. Crossover usually occurs when matching regions on matching chromosomes break and then reconnect to the other chromosome. The result of this process is an exchange of genes, called genetic recombination.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Exotic creatures found in the coral triangle of the Philippines

Check out these photos of the newly discovery species found in the deep waters of the Philippines. The expedition included over two dozen U.S. and Philippine scientists and a group from National Geographic — including underwater photographer Emory Kristof, who teamed with noted underwater explorer Robert Ballard of WHOI in 1985 to find the wreckage of the Titanic.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Animal Cells

animal cell are forms of eukaryotic cells which make up many tissues in animals. they actually have small vacuoles. Due to the lack of a rigid cell wall, animal cells can adopt a variety of shapes.

Post your answer the questions below:

1. What are ribosomes?
2. does an animal cell contain a cell wall?
3. Where are
where ribosomes constructed?