Volume 26, Number 4


April 2015

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There's always something happening here at the Sea Lab, and we hope to bring you frequent updates of the latest activities.


10th Year Anniversary of Cocktails with the Critters – May 7

It's more than just cocktails – it's enjoyment, entertainment and excitement for the environment!

Cocktails with Critters, the 10th annual fundraiser for the Dauphin Island Sea Lab Foundation, will be Thursday, May 7, from 6:00 pm till 9:00 pm at Bluegill Restaurant on the Causeway. This will be an exciting evening overlooking Mobile Bay. For those seeking more thrills, there will be a fantastic silent auction. The Bluegill Restaurant is pulling out all the stops and will be serving fabulous and tasty hors d'oeuvres and wine and beer. (READ MORE)

Mentoring Maximizes Potential

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Left – Sarah Bowman. Right – Dr. Sean Powers and Carly Alexander.

Despite their busy lives of fieldwork, lab work, research and classes, graduate students and staff from Dr. Sean Powers' Fisheries Ecology Lab took time to mentor two high school students who both participated in the Mobile Regional Science and Engineering Fair this year. The mentoring must have helped as both students won their categories at the fair! (READ MORE)

AmeriCorps lends a hand – or 18 hands!

AmeriCorps volunteers at the DISL. DISL Facilities Manager Troy McBride is on the left; Dr. John Dindo, Director of Facilities, is on the right.

A team from the National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC), an AmeriCorps program, came to work at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab from March 5 to April 7. During this time, the team was dedicated to giving the 34-acre campus an invigorating new look. (READ MORE)

Magnolia, the First Alabama Rescued Manatee, is Released

Graduate student Kayla DaCosta (DISL) and researcher Monica Ross (Sea to Shore Alliance) fit Magnolia with her satellite GPS tag prior to release. Photo Credit N. Wingers/ DISL

A rehabilitated manatee that stranded in Alabama waters this winter was returned to her natural habitat March 16 by a team from the Dauphin Island Sea Lab's Manatee Sighting Network (DISL's MSN) and the Alabama Marine Mammal Stranding Network (ALMMSN), who traveled to Crystal River, Florida for the release. (READ MORE)

Deep Sea Exploration, Classroom-Style

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Teachers enjoyed the Invent-a-Robot activity, and got creative in their designs.

NOAA's Office of Education has a wealth of information and opportunities for teachers to expand their knowledge and classroom lessons pertaining to the ocean and surrounding environment. One such opportunity is the Ocean Explorer suite of professional development workshops. The most recent pairing, Why Do We Explore? and How Do We Explore?, brought teachers to the Dauphin Island Sea Lab to learn about the reasons, techniques, and methods used aboard the NOAA Okeanos Explorer deep sea research vessel, all from the comfort of the classroom. (READ MORE)

A New Instrument to Study…Burrowing Worms?

Students (l-r) Aaron Macy, Haley Nicholson (not pictured), Alex Marquez and Technician Grant Lockridge examine the new flume.

Dr. Kelly Dorgan, Senior Marine Scientist, is interested in how worms and other bottom-dwelling creatures interact with their environments, including burrowing behavior. To study these creatures, her team and DISL's Technical Support helped provide a new tool to investigate the behavior of these bottom-dwellers – a new flume. (READ MORE)

Sea Lab Notes

DISL graduate students Laura Stone (left) and Kayla DaCosta (right) support team Spadefish Fighting Cancer.

  • Team Spadefish Rules! Thank you so much for everyone's support of this year's DISL Relay for Life Team Spadefish Fighting Cancer. At the start of the Relay for Life event, Team Spadefish was barely edged out by another team, but thanks to some last minute donations, Spadefish once again claimed the top spot as the #1 fundraising team for the event, raising $2,365 for the American Cancer Society! Team Spadefish organizer Elizabeth Hieb said, "We greatly appreciate everyone's support, their time, their donations, and their goodwill to make this event so successful. We've all been touched by cancer, in some way or another, and with everyone's continued support, we will beat this!" (READ MORE)

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