Two one-week trips were taken to the University of Maine's Darling Marine Center and the Smithsonian Marine Center at Fort Pierce, Florida.
In Maine, samples of local larval forms were collected and used in experiments designed to determine the ability of larvae of marine annelids (segmented worms) can assimilated dissolved organic materials from seawater through the activity of their digestive system.
In Florida, samples of oceanic plankton were taken to collect larvae of sea stars (asteroid echinoderms) that are undergoing the process of cloning. These specimens will be used to determine the morphological events associated with the clonal development of new individuals from tissue of existing larvae.
Will Jaeckle and Craig Brauer (IWU student) joined a group of scientist from the University of Oregon and University of Southampton (UK) to study the feeding biology of larval forms of deep-sea echinoderms. Aboard the R/V Seward Johnson and using the Johnson-Sea-Link submersibles, adult specimens of echinoderms were collected from depths to 700 m in the Bahamas. When the specimens were returned to the surface, they were induced to spawn. The resulting developmental stages were used in experiments to determine whether the developmental forms of these deep-sea species can use bacteria-sized or dissolved organic materials as food and to measure their rates of oxygen consumption.
View Will's Bahamas Voyage blog
Will Jaeckle and Sarah Lewis and Oluwakewi "Kemi" Onajin (IWU students) joined a group of scientist from the University of Oregon and University of Southampton (UK) to study the vertical distribution of larval forms and their potential food organisms (cyanobacteria) aboard the R/V Walton Smith. Using plankton nets and sampling bottles specimens were collected from the surface waters to 1000 m in the Atlantic Ocean surrounding the islands of the Bahamas.
View photos of Will's biology research in the Bahamas