From October 20th to October 25th, I got the pleasure of joining a team of researchers from Rice University, Texas A&M University, and University of Houston Clearlake on a research cruise to the Flower Garden Banks (FGB). The cruise was a product of a recently funded NSF Rapid Grant to track the effects of floodwaters associated with Hurricane Harvey on the reefs at FGB. Our team included oceanographers, biologists, as well as support divers from NOAA and Moody Gardens. Researchers from Boston University will also assist in sample processing.
We spent five days upon the LUMCON R/V Point Sur conducting sampling dives for corals and sponges and collecting water quality data using CTD (Conductivity, Temperature, Depth) techniques. At times the weather didn't seem like it would cooperate, but in the end we completed all planned CTD surveys and came home with many coral and sponge samples from both banks of the perserve. The crew of the Point Sur made the ship feel like home. All in all it was a great, productive experience! I am looking forward to our portion of the project (proteomics and biochemical assays of corals) and integrating our results with all of the other groups who collected samples!
As this news/blog outlet has been somewhat neglected over the past year or so, I've decided to lump my summer updates into one big post. So here are the highlights from summer field work!
Mydlarz Lab in Roatan Honduras
The Mydlarz lab (Dr. Mydlarz, Contessa Ricci, and myself) traveled to Roatan Honduras where we spent a week at the Roatan Institute of Marine Science assisting with LSAMP research conducted by a group of undergraduate students from Midland College. Lots of diving and cool research!
Field Research in St. Thomas
In the end of the June, the entire Mydlarz lab, including new graduate students Nick and Brad, and my undergraduate student Caleb, traveled to St. Thomas to conduct research for our newest EAGER grant. There we worked with Marilyn Brandt at the University of the Virgin Islands on a variety of projects, and I completed the field research for the last chapter of my disseration.
Lauren Fuess is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Connecticut working with Dr. Daniel Bolnick. Formerly she was a PhD student at the University of Texas at Arlington with Dr. Laura Mydlarz. The opinions expressed here are solely her own.