Everyone knows what a pteropod is, right?
by Stephanie Bush
Everyone knows what a pteropod is, right? Well, not quite. When I participated in NMNH’s Scientist Is In program a few months back, I talked to 262 people, asking them if they knew why pteropods were important to ocean ecosystems. Only two people had HEARD the term “pteropod”, and they weren’t sure what it referred to.
It’s ok though, since even the scientists studying pteropods don’t necessarily know which pteropod is which and what pteropod is what. Yikes!! That’s where I come into the picture. I started a post-doctoral project with IZ curator Karen Osborn in the fall of 2012 to determine species delineations in this group.
I came in knowing only the basics about pteropods: they are gastropods (= snails) with a reduced or absent shell and spend their entire lives in the water column of the oceans. They get their name from the modification of the typical crawling snail foot into flapping wings (“ptero” = wing, “pod” = foot). All species are quite small, typically a few centimeters long, but they are very numerous, so form an important part of the ocean food-web.
I knew that the taxonomy of this group was a bit of a mess and hoped to use molecular genetics in concert with morphological information to assign individual pteropods to species…
(read more: Smithsonian NMNH - Invert. Zoology Dept.)
images: Smithsonian NMNH
(via thescienceofreality)Source: rhamphotheca
The fact that the one guy throws down his bag and goes to save the guy, but then he realizes he’s too late. And if you continue watching him, he like throws his hands up and then turns away. He probably feels disappointed that he couldn’t help, but he tried. I bet he didn’t even know the guy. And that really makes me not lose faith in everyone.
watched this atleast 5 times. too powerful not to reblog.
Everyone else kinda just runs back like the train is boutta explode or somethin.
It’s that fight or flight response
I think they all turn away because they don’t want to watch him die..