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Southern Fried Science Year-in-Review

2013 starter with a bang. More specifically, it started with a Bang! Zop! Pow! when I published Five organisms with real super powers that rival their comic book counterparts, a post that set the tenor of my writing style for the rest of the year. The ongoing posts in “Andrew makes lists of ridiculous organisms with tenuous pop-culture connections” have been among the most widely read articles on Southern Fried Science.

David followed suit with his delightfully perverse 50 Shades of Grey Reef Shark: A Valentine’s Day Special Report on Shark Sex (With Pictures! And Video!). Amy kicked of the SFS Department of Human Dimensions in Fisheries Management with Know Your Fishermen as well as your Farmer to which Chuck adds – Fishermen Are Not Evil in his inaugural post. Iris taught us all about Issues facing Puget Sound Chinook salmon in her first post as well.

The spring saw some heavier discussions on finance and graduate school, with Amy leading the charge in Advice I Took For Granted For Grad School. I followed up with a pair of primers on managing credit cards while writing your thesis Surviving Grad School: Credit, why it matters, how to build it, and how to use it and Surviving Grad School: Credit Cards, Reimbursement, and International Travel

Amy fired a shot across the bow when a clueless science writer tried (and failed) to tackle social science as a discipline – I’m a scientist. A social scientist. Please opine on the validity of my discipline. We went fishing with Chuck, who taught us that Circle Hooks Save Fish.

And then Mermaids happened. Again. Just a reminder: Mermaids: The New Evidence is a Fake Documentary (and our most read post for 2013). David captured our live-tweeting of this abysmal foc-u-mentary in The great #Mermaids Storify. I followed up with some more detailed critiques, including It’s not about the Mermaids: Animal Planet’s track record of fabricated reality and We know what the Bloop is and it’s not mermaids.

This summer we welcomed a new writer to our little team. Kersey dove head-first into SFS with What does an OpenCTD mean to marine ecologists? And then took us on a whirlwind tour of the larger scientific landscape with his semi-weekly Fun Science Friday series. This summer also saw Amy and Me driving across the country, in a truck full of goats, which you can follow along with in our #Ocean2Ocean series.

Amy started of the fall with her epic opus A Primer on Ethics in the Human Dimensions of Conservation. Read it. Live it.

The fall on 2013 also saw our writers begin to more thoroughly address issues of privilege in academia and conservation. David brought us The Pizza of Privilege: My Experiences with Anti-Semitism in Academia. I spent some time addressing so-called ‘allies’ in On being an ally and being called out on your privilegeAmy reminds us that Privilege ain’t ust a club in Ibiza with The Invisible Disability: The diabetic academic manifesto.

Then I drowned you town. I also wrote my first Science Fiction book, in the emerging genre of Cli-Fi. Here are my thoughts on that – A scientist writes science fiction – thoughts on self-publishing my first novel.

2013 ended with some of what we do best, debunking bad science on the internet. In 28 fallacies about the Fukushima nuclear disaster’s effect on the US West Coast, I take on some particularly egregious anti-science fear mongering regarding the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant. David finishes the year on a lighter note, with his final post of 2013 – Here’s how you can tell that the “shark” photobombing kids is actually a dolphin

To all our readers, thank you for making 2013 Southern Fried Science’s biggest year, yet. See y’all in 2014!


Deep-sea biologist, population/conservation geneticist, backyard farm advocate. The deep sea is Earth's last great wilderness.


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