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Clare Gallagher, 2014, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Project: 
Effects of Ocean Acidification on Porites astreoides (Mustard Hill Coral) from Two Bermudian Reef Locations
Organization/Location: 
Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences, Bermuda and Woods Hole, Massachusetts
Adviser(s): 
Samantha de Putron, BIOS

Through my internship, I was able to conduct 10 weeks of lab and field research in Bermuda and two weeks of lab work at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute. The goal was to experience the world of marine research and ultimately, to execute an experiment worthy of being published. I became "science" SCUBA certified and was therefore able to dive to collect and return adult corals for my lab experiment on ocean acidification. By raising coral from the larval stage in a controlled environment in a lab at BIOS, I was able to learn firsthand the effects of ocean acidification on coral recruits (babies) . My experiment tested whether corals from two different Bermudian reefs handled the effects of ocean acidification differently.The Bermudian lifestyle was a fantastic experience and it was interesting to counter it with the demanding hours that my experiment required. The best moments of the summer were when I was diving in the Bermudian reefs. Getting SCUBA certified has opened my eyes to the marine world and to all of the opportunities for marine research around the world, which I may pursue for my independent work. Hopefully by next summer, my experiment will be published and I will be a secondary author.