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SEA Currents: Woods Hole Partnership Education Program


June 15, 2017

New England’s Biodiversity

Miranda Van Allen, University of Rhode Island

SEA Semester

Above: The PEP students at Woodneck Beach, Falmouth. Below: A tube worm found during the beach survey.

My favorite day so far has been going out into the field of Wood Neck Beach in Falmouth, Massachusetts to get a closer look and collect data on the biodiversity within a rocky intertidal habitat. Being from this area and working closely with the species that live throughout the New England coastlines, I felt very confident identifying different species and had so much fun being outdoors in the beautiful weather. There were two projects that the class was working on during this field work and that was species richness and the abundance of the invasive Littorina littorea that has dominated all along New England coasts!

Each group found that the species with the highest abundance were both invasive species; Asian shore crabs (Hemigrapsus sanguineas) and the common periwinkle (Littorina littorea). This gives rise to the concern of outcompeting native species and a decrease in species diversity. Not only did this day show us as students the importance of correctly identifying species but also gave us some experience on a technique that scientists all around the world use. A transect and quadrat method is very handy when determining abundance within a certain area and knowing how to analyze species within this method will help us excel in our science careers and expand our knowledge of scientific data collecting. As you can see in our photo, the group had such a fun day together bonding and learning more about the  the group had such a fun day together bonding and learning more about the species that we will be living amongst throughout the rest of the summer.

- Miranda


Learn more about the Woods Hole Partnership Education Program (PEP).

Categories: Woods Hole Partnership Education Program, • Topics: pep  science  research • (0) Comments

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