Marine Biology (Section 2)

Discipline: Biology
Instructor: Polozov
Credits: 3
Day: B
Start: 0800
End: 0915
Field Work: Day 8 - Salvador - Friday, 14 November | Brazil Download Syllabus

This introductory course will explore the structure of marine ecosystems, how they function, and what forms of life inhabit them. Uniqueness of salt-water environment; local and global oceanic patterns of salinity, currents, three-dimensional stratification, etc. will be addressed through the scope of abiotic factors shaping biodiversity within different marine zones. Major groups of marine organisms will be studied including phylogenetic relationships, organization, ecology, and behavioral adaptations. Special attention will be given to human dependency and impact on marine resources and ecosystems. Diverse field experiences will be incorporated into the course providing a variety of opportunities to learn about the marine world following individual preferences and interests.

Field Work

Country: Brazil
Day: 8 - Salvador - Friday, 14 November

This lab is 70 points (Participation -- 20 points; Field Notes – 20 points, and Field Journal – 30 points). As a preparation to this lab students will create and review data sheets on sea turtles.  During the introductory field lecture by the professor, students will learn firsthand about sea turtles ecology, anthropogenic impact on their populations, and major problems related to conservation within the context of the specific site. Field work on the site will include two parts:

  1. Exploration of different aspects of the TAMAR project related issues: research behind of the conservation; facilities; educational work; management of tourism; sequence of practical steps on implementation of the entire conservation procedure. This work will incorporate independent observations; collection of factual data from available published, printed, and posted sources; interviewing of staff members and visitors.
  2. After the break group will be assembled on the ocean shore and will explore part of the coast as an example of the coastal ecosystem, diversity of biotic and abiotic conditions, biodiversity, and anthropogenic impact. Conclusive part of the lab will include independent observation on the coast as a part of the sea turtle environment.
Collection of data during independent observations will be performed in accordance with specific protocols provided before the lab. Results will be collected when taking Field Notes on the site, and on return will be assembled into a Field Journal in accordance with instructions provided in class. Academic Objectives:
  1. Study of Tamar project including biological, social, cultural, and economic aspects of conservation of rare marine species;
  2. Study of ecology, reproduction, incubation, and reintroduction of young turtles into the wild;
  3. Study of specific coastal environment, and of anthropogenic impact on coastal ecosystems;
  4. Development of independent field observational skills, and field data processing.