Fat fish, snapping shrimp, and the best books about the ocean: Thursday Afternoon Dredging, January 11, 2018

Thursday Afternoon DredgingJanuary 11, 2018

Cuttings (short and sweet): 

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Dear Shark Man, do sharks fart?

Dear Shark ManJanuary 10, 2018

Welcome to  Dear Shark Man, an advice column inspired by a ridiculous e-mail I received. You can send your questions to me via twitter (@WhySharksMatter) or e-mail (WhySharksMatter at gmail).


Dear Shark Man,

Do sharks fart?

Sincerely,
Restless in Raleigh 

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OceansOnline is now accepting abstracts! Lead a discussion, teach a skill, and join us!

#SciCommJanuary 9, 2018

OceansOnline is now accepting abstracts! OceansOnline is an optional one-day add-on to the International Marine Conservation Congress (IMCC5).This year’s IMCC (including OceansOnline) will take place in Kuching, Malaysia. IMCC5 is June 22-29th, 2018 with OceansOnline on the 2018.

OceansOnline focuses on using online tools for marine science and conservation, including advocacy, public education, research, and collaboration! Anyone is welcome, including scientists, conservation advocates, educators, natural resource managers, journalists, and communicators. OceansOnline content is suitable for beginners or professionals.

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Fish feel pain, mining feels the pressure, sea lions feel excluded, and science publishing feels like an old boys club. It’s the Monday Morning Salvage: January 8, 2018!

Monday Morning SalvageJanuary 8, 2018

Fog Horn (A Call to Action)

  • Abstract submission open for the 2018 International Marine Conservation Congress in Kuching, Sarawak this summer! Get your abstracts in early!

Flotsam (what we’re obsessed with right now)

Jetsam (what we’re enjoying from around the web)

https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2018/01/7d362d3cdd9b-tsukiji-fish-market-holds-final-new-year-auction.html

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Join us as we read and discuss a research paper every week! Introducing #SharkScienceMonday

#SciCommJanuary 2, 2018

Be sure to follow #SharkScienceMonday on twitter every Monday morning of 2018 (starting January 8th)! Each week, a team of researchers* will be discussing a different scientific paper related to shark and ray biology, behavior, ecology, or management.

Some papers will be new and cutting edge, while others will be classics. They’ll all have one thing in common: a member of the Dulvy lab thought that they had an interesting or important result that significantly contributed to our various areas of expertise. Whenever possible, we will share a link to an open access copy of the paper so everyone can read along.

After we summarize the key takeaways from each paper, we’ll take questions. We’ll also start a discussion about that specific paper and the discipline that it is a part of, including suggesting various experts you can follow on twitter.

We hope that you’ll follow along with us, and that you’ll learn some interesting and important things about elasmobranch research and management!

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How to support your favorite Southern Fried Science writers in 2018

Blogging

Southern Fried Science is growing! Thanks to Patreon and a few passive income streams, for the first time in almost a decade, we’re able to begin paying our volunteer writers for their outreach efforts. This year, we’ve established the Southern Fried Science Writers’ Fund to begin paying out compensation for all the incredible work that David, Amy, Chuck, Kersey, Chris, Sarah, Solomon, and Michelle have put in to making this website one of the most read marine science and conservation blog on the internet.

With the exception of a few weird months in 2010, this site has always been 100% free and ad free. But that doesn’t mean it’s free to run. Support from our fans keeps the lights on and the server humming, and now, with the Writers’ Fund, fan support also goes towards getting your favorite ocean writers compensated for their work. There are currently 3 ways to support your favorite Southern Fried Science writers in 2018.

Subscribe to our Patreon Campaign. My Patreon campaign, Andrew Thaler is creating tools for ocean science and conservation, is, by a very wide margin, the primary source of funding for Southern Fried Science. Patreon supporters get exclusive, behind the scenes access, a few surprises, and, of course, the legendary Jaunty Ocean Critter stickers. We now have a subscription tier just for the Southern Fried Science Writers Fund, so if you want to ensure that 100% of you contribution (minus Patreon fees) goes towards supporting our writers, sign up for the $5 per month subscription. There’s also options to cover server costs, support Oceanography for Everyone, or contribute to our general project fund. Even $1 a month makes a huge difference.

Use our Amazon Affiliate Link. Occasionally you might find an Amazon Affiliate link embedded in an article, if, for example, we’re talking about a book or a new tool or presenting a bill of materials for a new project. When you use these links to buy something, we get a small kickback from Amazon. This is the closest thing to an ad that you’ll see on Southern Fried Science. You can also use this Amazon Affiliate Link to go straight to Amazon and we’ll get a tiny percentage of anything you buy from them. So when you’re ready for a 3D printer or a new hagfish textbook or a $36,000 Wyland original oil painting of dancing orcas, consider using our Amazon Affiliate Link. It doesn’t cost you anything, and it helps us out a ton.

Send a one-time PayPal donation. If Amazon isn’t your jam and you’re not ready to commit to a monthly subscription or you’d just rather send one lump sum, you can send a contribution to me via PayPal. Just make a note that it’s for the Southern Fried Science Writers’ Fund or Southern Fried Science in general.

Unfortunately, because of the way we’ve structured Southern Fried Science, Oceanography for Everyone, and other properties that fall under the same aegis, contributions to Southern Fried Science are not tax deductible. 

Bone-eating zombie worms, octopus overlords, old wooden ships and new woes for deep-sea mining. It’s the Monday Morning Salvage! January 1, 2018.

Monday Morning SalvageJanuary 1, 2018

Fog Horn (A Call to Action)

  • Stop. Breathe. Take a step back. This can all be incredibly overwhelming. Pick the fight that matters most to you and take a few days deciding what success looks like, what strategies will work, and what tactics are available to you. And then hoist your flag and get to work.

  • And when you meet someone fighting a different fight, remember to support them. There are already enough fronts to advance without taking friendly fire from our flanks.

Flotsam (what we’re obsessed with right now)

The frilled giant Pacific octopus. Photo Courtesy D. Scheel

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A year of snot-oozing, carcass-scavenging, slime eels: Hagfish Science in 2017.

biology, deep sea, marine science, Natural Science, ScienceDecember 27, 2017

Hagfish. You love them. I love them. The owner of this sedan has no choice but to love them:

Photo courtesy Oregon State Police.

2017 was a big year for hagfish science.

Big Ideas (the ecologic paradigms that hagfish shifted) 

Heincke’s law is one of those ecologic principles that more often acts as a foil for rejecting the null hypothesis than as a consistent pattern in ecology. It’s most basic summary is: The further from shore and the deeper dwelling a fish is, the bigger it grows. Heincke’s law does not appear to be true for hagfish, whose size appear to have no relation to the depth at which they occur. On the other hand, phylogenetic relationships do seem to play some role in regulating body size in hagfish.

Defense and Behavior (how hagfish do the things that they do)

Hagfish are master escape artists, capable of squeezing in and out of tight spaces barely half the width of their body. This great for getting in an out of rotting whale carcasses on the sea floor, creeping into crevices, and avoiding predators. But how do they accomplish this incredible feat? Hagfish have a flaccid sinus under their skin which allows them to control the distribution of venous blood and alter their body width as they wriggle through narrow passages. Freedman and Fudge identified 9 distinct behaviors which take advantage of this adaptation, including anchoring, forming tight loops to push the body through an opening, and bending the hagfish head 90 degrees to force it through a slit. And there are videos!

The Fudge lab has been busy this year, cranking out some of the most noteworthy work on the incredible behavior of hagfish. In addition to examining hagfish motility, Boggett and friends looked into how those flaccid sinuses aid predator avoidance. The team build wee little guillotines loaded with shark teeth to see how hagfish skin protects the animal from vicious bites. In a year when a truckload of hagfish spectacularly crushed a car, the fact that this research was the biggest breakout sensation in hagfish pop culture says everything you need to know about the compelling results of this study. You can read more about this study at The Verge, Futurity, Popular Science, and plenty of other outlets.

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Southern Fried Science year-in-review, Palau’s Giant, a new challenge for deep-sea mining, Porgs are Puffins, and more! Monday Morning Salvage: December 25, 2017.

Monday Morning SalvageDecember 25, 2017

Happy Holidays from the Southern Fried Science Team!

Fog Horn (A Call to Action)

Flotsam (what we’re obsessed with right now)

  • Do-it-yourself science is taking off. A growing movement seeks to make the tools of science available to everyone (including you). I love that The Economist now has a “Punk Science” heading.
  • Palau now requires all tourists to sign an environmental pledge when they enter the country. All flights in now feature this delightful short film.

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17 amazing and important things about sharks and rays that scientists discovered in 2017

#SciComm, marine science, Natural Science, Science, sharksDecember 22, 2017

2017 was… yeah. Of all the years I’ve lived through, 2017 was definitely one of them. Anyway, some interesting things happened in the world of shark research. Here, in no particular order, are 17 amazing and important things that scientists discovered about sharks and rays over the last year.


1 Sharks can switch between sexual and asexual reproduction. We’ve known that several shark species can reproduce asexually for over a decade now, but this year, Dudgeon and friends showed an individual shark switching between sexual and asexual reproduction for the first time!

Noteworthy media coverage: CNN, National Geographic, Gizmodo

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Staff: Andrew David Thaler (1202), David Shiffman (565), Amy Freitag (238), Guest Writer (81), Kersey Sturdivant (58), Chris Parsons (57), Michelle Jewell (21), Chuck Bangley (19), Administrator (2), Sarah Keartes (1), David Lang (1), Solomon David (1), Iris (1), Michael Bok (0), Lyndell M. Bade (0)
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