Overview of Course
Whales, sharks, squids, sea turtles, albatrosses… oh my! FW 304 will be an engaging introduction to marine megafauna, ecology, and conservation. We will first examine the physical dimensions of the world’s ocean and describe ocean zones based on the ecosystems found within them. We will then explore the evolution of life in the oceans and how large marine animals have adapted to the challenges of a cold, dark, and deep ocean. Throughout the class we will highlight how scientists study the oceans and the large animals that live in them, providing glimpses of new technologies that boost our understanding of marine ecology. The course will also cover challenges we face in sustaining and conserving healthy oceans for the future. For example, we will learn how issues such as bycatch and climate change are affecting ocean species and how we can better conserve out charismatic marine megafauna. What better place to take such a class than on a ship?!