In this introductory course we will investigate the features and dynamics of the World Ocean, which covers roughly 70% of the Earth’s surface. We will take advantage of our intense and continuing contact with the oceans and coastal regions during the voyage to build an understanding of the interdisciplinary nature of ocean processes. The disciplines involved include marine geology, marine chemistry, physical oceanography, and marine biology. Topics treated include seafloor spreading and marine sediments (geology), salinity and biogeochemical cycles (chemistry), currents, waves, and tides (physics), and primary and secondary production, biodiversity, and oceanic resources (biology). We will also touch on coastal development and management of fisheries, especially in relation to the countries and regions we will visit.
Field WorkCountry: Trinidad and Tobago
Day: 2 - Monday, 14 November
This day-long Field Class on November 14 will begin with a visit the government’s Institute of Marine Affairs. There we will tour their expansive aquaculture facilities to learn about their current projects and results. We will also learn about their work on invasive species (especially the introduced lionfish) and their coral and mangrove conservation efforts. Next we will visit the Biology Department of the University of the West Indies to view their Aquaculture & Fisheries research facility to learn about their educational fishery programs. A short visit to their Museum will introduce us to some local marine and estuarine species. We will end with learning about the Department's research activities, including the Caroni Swamp RDI Project. The day will conclude with a visit to the Caroni Swamp to learn about its mangroves and their ecosystem services. We will see numerous wildfowl that feed and nest in the Swamp, including the scarlet ibis, Trinidad’s national bird. Participants should bring shoes and clothing that can get wet or muddy during explorations of Caroni Swamp. Put electronic gear in protective plastic bags. Also bring sunscreen, a head covering to protect from the tropical sun, insect repellant, and some sort of note book for making observations. Learning objectives:
- Visit the Institute of Marine Affairs to learn about their work on aquaculture, invasive species, and coral and mangrove conservation
- Visit the Biology Department of the University of the West Indies to view the Aquaculture & Fisheries research facility and their Museum, and learn about the Department's research activities, including the Caroni Swamp RDI Project.
- Conclude by visiting the Caroni Swamp to learn about its mangroves and their ecosystem services.