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Squirt here to talk about the importance of my home: the ocean! Just look at this mess:

The ocean provides a lot of resources to humans. For example, we get some of our food, water, and medications from the ocean! Also, have you ever been to the beach? The beach is a recreational benefit from the ocean.

The ocean is an amazing place so it's important for us to protect it. You can help out. First off, please don't be a litterbug! Many plastic bottles, toys, cans, boxes, and bags end up in the oceans. You can help clean up the oceans by recycling plastics, cardboard boxes, and cans. Also, next time you go to school look around and see if there is any trash blowing around. If you see any trash pick it up and recycle it or place it in a trashcan. Another way to not be a litterbug is to reuse items. For example, the plastic bags used at grocery stores can be reused as trash bags.

The ocean is also polluted by chemicals and pesticides. You can help reduce this pollution by asking your parents to use less chemicals on the lawn and in your garden. If you don't have a garden you can buy organic produce at the store, start a garden, or buy local produce at a farmers market!

Can you think of other ways to protect my home? If so click on the "comments" link below and share your ideas with me and all the other kids reading this blog!

Thank you for helping clean up my home. Maybe next time you see it there will be less of a mess!

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Tagged in: kids blog Squirt

Posted by on in News

Squirt here to talk about fish!

There are five stages in the life cycle of a fish. Fish begin as an egg, just like you did. Then as the fish grows and develops, it become larval fish. During this stage the fish lives off of a yolk sac. The larval stage of a fish is similar to the human fetal stage when you were growing inside your mom. Take a look at this anglerfish in the larval stage.
When a fish starts eating on its own it enters the fry stage. In humans this would be the child stage. As a fry continues to develop it then enters the juvenile stage. During the juvenile stage, the fish matures reproductively. Humans undergo this stage during their teenage years. The last stage of development in fish in the adult stage. In the adult stage, fish are capable of reproducing to create their own offspring (or children). Humans also have an adult stage, for example your mom and dad are adults.

Just like human boys and girls are different, so are many fish! This is known as sexual dimorphism where the different genders (or sexes) look different. Male anglerfish are much smaller than female fish.  Also, only female anglerfish have the bioluminescent lure. Check out the images below!

Male anglerfish:

Female anglerfish:


See you next time!

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Check out Squirt as he explores counter-illumination!

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Posted by on in News

Squirt here with an update about the Blazing Seven cruise! The scientists spent six days at sea. They collected samples on five of these days. The scientists described the days to me as "beautiful" with a gentle breeze. They towed their nets in the clear blue waters at 48 places! The nets caught shrimp, squid, jellyfish, billfish, flyingfish larvae, and lanternfishes!

At each place they saw Sargassum. Check out the picture below. Sargassum is brown algae that attracts many animals including shrimp, crabs, and fish. Some of the fishes include filefishes (in the family Monacanthidae), triggerfishes (in the family Balistidae), Sargassum fish (in the family Antennariidae), flyingfishes (in the family Exocoetidae), and dolphifishes (in the family Coryphaenidae). 


The Blazing Seven finished its cruise by heading westward to Port Fourchon in Louisiana. The next cruise will be setting sail soon. I'm so excited!

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Tagged in: kids blog Squirt

Posted by on in News

Another DEEPEND cruise went out to sea! This time a different ship, the Blazing Seven, set sail on June 5th for a collecting trip! I hear the scientists woke up at 3 o'clock in the early morning to start their adventure.  


The scientists on the Blazing Seven are working together to better understand the ocean ecosystem. Some of the scientists onboard are researching the eggs and larvae of fishes while others are researching the ocean food web.

Throughout their time at sea the scientists on the Blazing Seven used neuston, ring, and bongo nets to sample the water. These nets are similar to the MOCNESS nets we talked about in an earlier blog post, except the neuston and ring nets only use one net instead of five. The bongo nets are two side by side nets and look like the picture below. The scientists on this cruise were not sampling as deep as on the R/V Point Sur cruise. The Blazing Seven scientists are sampling at 100 and 500 meters. That's about as deep as the Statue of Liberty in New York is tall (93 meters) and the Taipei 101 in Taiwan is tall (509 meters).

Bongo Nets

Their first catches included several lanternfish (in the family Myctophidae), deepwater shrimp, and many kinds of fish larvae. The scientists have also seen a lot of Sargassum, a brown seaweed. Check out the juvenile flying fish.

I'm excited to hear and see what the scientists find next!

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