The Abundant And Diverse Viruses of The Sea
Written by Vincent
What is the most abundant biological entity in the oceans?

Viruses, of course! The quantity and diversity of viruses in the seas are staggering. Each milliliter of ocean water contains several million virus particles – a global total of 1030 virions! If lined up end to end, they would stretch 200 million light years into space. Viruses constitute 94% of all nucleic-acid containing particles in the sea and are 15 fold more abundant than bacteria and archaea.

Because viruses kill cells, they have a major impact on ocean ecology. About 1023 virus infections occur each second in the oceans; in surface waters they eliminate 20-40% of prokaryotes daily. Viral lysis converts living organisms into particulate matter that becomes carbon dioxide after respiration and photodegradation. Cell killing by viruses also liberates enough iron to supply the needs of phytoplankton, and leads to the production of dimethyl sulphoxide, a gas that influences the climate of the Earth. Because of these activities, marine viruses have a significant impact on global microbial communities and geothermal cycles.

Goldfish Diaries
Written by Ava

Can you imagine raising goldfish for more than two decades AFTER your father won you your first goldfish in a carnival.  Peter sure can! Not only has he been raising goldfish for over 40 years, but he's also really making something out of his passion for the hobby.

Peter Ponzio is the President of the American Goldfish Association and the publisher of its current newsletter.  He's a certified judge of goldfish and koi judge for both the American Goldfish Association and the Associated Koi Clubs of America, both which have strict guidelines to follow in order to become one.  He helps to maintain the AGA Goldfish Pages, which has combined the resources of the American Goldfish Association with goldfishpages to provide you with all you need to know this lovely little fish.

He also owns and maintains many large aquariums, offers some of the best tips and suggestions on how to keep up an aquarium hobby, and considers himself a devout marine conservationist!

Declining Coral Calcification on the Great Barrier Reef
Written by Ava

As many of us know, The Great Barrier Reef in Australia,  is under great distress.

Mony Halls, Sr., DEEP Facilitator and Website/Charity coordinator from the Shark and Coral Conservation team discovered this article online and sent it to me on to stress just how dire the GBR's situation truly is.   

"We feel this article encapsulates our concerns for the re-growth of corals worldwide, so we would be happy to be associated with it," he told me, speaking on behalf of Shark and Coral Conservation.

Reef-building corals are under increasing physiological stress from a changing climate and ocean absorption of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide. We investigated 328 colonies of massive Porites corals from 69 reefs of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) in Australia. Their skeletal records show that throughout the GBR, calcification has declined by 14.2% since 1990, predominantly because extension (linear growth) has declined by 13.3%
Salmon Conservation
Written by Ava

We're sure most of you TRT members are big marine, fish, and ocean conservationists and so we're proud to see that concerned citizens in Canada are also taking a stand.  In doing so, they've urged the government to create a conservation program to protect and manage the wild salmon population.  That program is the Wild Salmon Policy.  

Based on this policy, the Watershed Watch Salmon Society and the David Suzuki Foundation have joined forces to write a report on the matter called "Knowledge Integration in Salmon Conservation and Sustainability Planning."  This report serves to continue the conservation and restoration of Pacific Salmon for the benefit of all Canadians.  

The plan focuses on another report--one also written by the David Suzuki Foundation--called Returning Salmon.  Returning Salmon evaluates the Wild Salmon policy and looks at other federal, regional, and provincial government initiatives and how they can all be combined.  We learn that improved and integrated planning with clear focuses on combining all programs should be our objective.  

The Bohemian
Written by Ava

Freelance writer, photographer and blogger Wendee Holtcamp considers herself a bohemian in every sense of the word--even in the marine sense! She's done some of the unthinkable and in most people's cases, unimaginable--traveled the world, seen several sea turtles, dived with sharks, lived in a one-room log cabin and toured the tropical rainforests of Australia. She also lives to tell about it--and more so, lives to write about it, using her experiences to publish countless articles, blog posts, and even to start writing a memoir. 

Wendee was kind enough to answer some of The Reef Tank's questions for her on her marine experiences (hanging out with sharks and sea turtles, snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef, and experiencing coastal Alaska are just a few of the many amazing things she's done!)

One thing's for sure--her adventures won't be over for a while!

Tell me about your Bohemian Adventures blog. Why do you call yourself a bohemian?

Deep-Sea Biodiversity
Written by Ava

Before even taking one look at Dr. Paul Yancey's Deep-Sea Biology page, one really gets the feeling that he's a marine biology and oceanography expert.  After all, he did get his PhD studying biochemistry of fish and sharks at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. He's currently a Professor of Biology at Whitman College in Washington. He also knows all about current issues facing our ocean and he is a devout marine conservationist.  He's pretty much experienced every aspect of the ocean, from researching sharks to completing deep sea shipboard research along the West Coast (California, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia, to name a few.) 

He knows tons of great facts and has analyzed marine specimens with the best of them!

Not certain he's a true marine expert yet? I have proof! Just check out his fine answers below! 

How did you develop your interest in marine biology?

As a youth, my parents frequently took me to the beaches and rocky tidepools of California and Baja California (Mexico). One of my main hobbies was making a shell collection. We also watched Jacques Cousteau's show on TV. Plus my mother was a cell biologist. All this inspired a life-long interest in biology, especially in the oceans.
The Realist
Written by Ava
He has more of a background in engineering and law and less of a background in marine biology.  He's an expat Brit living in Sydney with a unique view on the climate change debate.  And yet with all these differences, we still found ourselves quite intrigued to interview Simon, who's NOT a climate scientist but IS the creator of the blog Australian Climate Madness to hear his take on climate realism, a phrase he uses to describe his feelings about the issue. We also learned about Australia's perspective on the subject and the biggest marine issues currently facing the Australia marine environment. 

Read our interview with Simon below.

What’s your background? Why the interest in climate change? 
My background is in Engineering and law. I read Engineering at Cambridge University, and subsequently qualified as a lawyer. My interest in climate change arose from the policies currently being pursued by the Labor government here in Australia. I was also very concerned by the politicization of the science of climate change both here and internationally, especially by the UN in the guise of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Deep Sea Adventures
Written by Ava

Kevin Zelnio is one busy marine guy.  Besides being a researcher at the Marine Conservation Molecular Facility at Duke University's Marine Lab, where develops microsatellites for deep sea inverts, he also writes for marine blogs like The Other 95% and Deep Sea News.  Somehow, he also makes to raise awareness for The Beagle Project AND spend time with his wife and two kids, AND play the guitar as a hobby, AND write music.  

I get breathless just typing all that! 

We had the opportunity to interview this well-rounded individual and also found out he's an avid marine conservationist and educates on the topic regularly.! Just another star to add to the row of amazing things Kevin is doing with his life.

And to think, it may have all started with weekends spent watching 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea as a kid...


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