Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Tiny Creatures and Water Chemistry

A recent article in the online and print magazine Aeon brought light to the subterranean world of the ocean deep, a world governed in part by pteropods, a type of plankton, whose population stability has been affected by the changing PH of ocean water:

"Researchers are also doing their best to glamorise pteropods, in an attempt to garner public attention and funding. They are trying to rebrand pteropods and their ilk as ‘charismatic microfauna’ and with good reason. The roiling drama of the planktonic world is wilder than any savannah or jungle. It is a theatre of ambush predators, hermaphrodites and mucus-hurling cannibals."

PH, water quality, and the close-up study of tiny organisms are important parts of the Mountain Institute's educational program up at TMI, and visiting students study the links between stream life, stream habitat, and stream chemistry to understand the complexity of water health. Take a look at the relevant article in Aeon and look at our website for more information on our watershed programming.

Students study the role of iron and conductivity in the stream ecosystem.
A student tests sample water for dissolved oxygen.


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