The art of algae | Mission Report 3 | Nekton Mission

The art of algae | Mission Report 3 | Nekton Mission



take three breaths and the first two you can bank lg4 so the dive boat has just returned after a really long day's dive it's time to see what samples they managed to bring up we got lots my name is Thea pop elite CEO I'm a marine biologist more specifically I'm a psychologist which means that I study algae you've been to the seashore and you've probably seen seaweed washed up on the beach right so that's algae algae is a very broad term we were talking about all of the micro algae and the macro algae together they really contribute the majority of the oxygen that were that we're breathing right now water in this tray so you can see what it looks like when it's all spread out like it would be in its environment this is the lineage actually that led to land plants the green algae oh really yeah this is actually one big gush it is it's one big individual branching piece crikey they're very similar to plants but they're much older than land plants but they're similar in that they photosynthesize and they photosynthesize so that they can get energy so they actually create their own food sugars using sunlight and in the process of doing that they also produce oxygen which is obviously very important for most life on Earth and this will get a proper or barring label with all of the collection information later on I've seen you know samples and specimens like this in books before in collections and you always wonder where they came from or what their story is and the fact that you can actually kind of see them or handle them they've given lucky enough to do so and here we are actually making one I never thought I'd actually find Algy so beautiful yeah yeah so what's next day what services well here so that everything gets nice and pressed and squished down and then we just leave it that has to go somewhere warm and dry okay all right sure thank you engine room thing we know that the environment is changing right and Bermudas a very interesting island because it exists that at a climate boundary where we have the tropics and the warm temperate coming together being able to have a kind of baseline of what's here now makes it possible for us to compare that with somewhere down the line when environmental conditions may have changed have we lost species because of the changed conditions or have things just kind of shifted seasonally things like that we would be able to answer those questions if we know exactly what we had to begin with right so these samples are still drying out in the engine room they're gonna be down there for a few days but she's promised to show me some of the other ones that she's been making okay right let's have a look at these in so these are the ones that we did yesterday because they're going to take a little bit of a while to dry out Wow yes Wow look at that look at this one look doesn't that look like someone who's just painted it amazing they all look so different do they look the way they look for a reason have they evolved to look like this to attract anything or to look a particular way in the water yeah we need to kind of think of flowers that way right as being not so sure that the algae are trying to attract anything because usually the stuff that's attracted to them is attracted them to them to eat them which would be a bad thing if anything they don't have picked at all a lot of them that are really highly branched that would be an adaptation for your having more surface area for photosynthesis there's just a huge range since that they have a really long evolutionary history and there really is such a huge diversity and some of them are really quite beautiful being part of the nekton mission Excel counting deep-ocean survey it's been really special to be a scientist on the ship with other scientists that are doing you know other types of science we haven't done this kind of sampling in deeper water now we're getting specimens from you know 150 meters and places where we haven't been able to collect before and get this this genetic data you've seen all these beautiful press specimens botanists have been doing this for centuries and so it's kind of really interesting for me to be part of that history of collecting plants and maintaining them for you know many many many future generations but then on top of that I get to do some really you know modern science and to me that's that's pretty special

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *