A team of University of South Florida scientists led by Dr. Joseph Torres is going to Antarctica from March to May to investigate the dramatic decline of a key player in the food chain, the Antarctic silverfish. The suspected killer is global warming.
Here are the USF researchers joining Torres:
Paul Suprenand is a Ph.D. student at the University of South Florida. He is researching marine organisms in the Eastern Tropical Pacific, the Gulf of Mexico, and Antarctica that may show early indications of ocean acidification stress. Among other duties, he will be the chief photographer during this expedition.
Lara Henry is a Ph.D. student at the University of South Florida working on coral physiology. On cruise Lara will be helping out with zooplankton and silverfish projects as well as filming our adventures.
Christin Murphy is a Ph.D. student at the University of South Florida in the Sensory Biology Laboratory. She will assist with sample collection while on the research expedition. Christin's research deals with hydrodynamic signal detection in seals and sea lions.
Melanie Parker is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of South Florida, and also works for Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute as an associate research scientist with Molluscan Fisheries Research Group. She will help primarily with zooplankton trawls, and preserving and identifying the species in those samples.
Nicole Dunham is graduating from the University of South Florida this semester with her master's degree, and also works for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute as a biological scientist. Nicole will be helping with fish identification and separating species into samples.
Tammy Cullins works for Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute as a Research Technician in the SEAMAP Program, and studies larval fish. On cruise Tammy will be operating the conductivity, temperature, and depth instrumentation.
Christine Cass is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of South Florida working with Dr. Kendra Daly in zooplankton ecology. Christine will be helping primarily with zooplankton/fish trawls, and respiration experiments on copepods and krill. Christine's research is focused on adaptation of tropical copepods in low-oxygen areas.
Erica Hudson is a Ph.D. student at the University of South Florida working on population genetics of the silverfish (pleuragramma). On cruise Erica will look at larval distributions of pleuragramma on the Western Antarctica Peninsula.
Eloy Martinez-Rivera is a master's student at the University of South Florida, working on respiration experiments of zooplankton and Antarctic Silverfish. On cruise Eloy will continue his experimentation, and assist Dr. Torres.