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Teaching the UCLA Marine Biology Quarter in Moorea, French Polynesia

This spring I worked as a Teaching Associate for the UCLA Marine Biology Quarter (MBQ) at the UC Berkely Gump Station in Mo'orea, French Polynesia. We had a great group of 15 undergraduate students in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department, as well as 5 faculty members. The MBQ is a field program designed to give advanced undergraduates an opportunity to gain intimate and first hand knowledge of marine communities, their constituents and their structure.

With the help and direct supervision of Dr. David Jacobs, Sarah Joy Bittick, and myself, students spent almost 8 weeks developing their projects, working long hours in the field, and finally writing up their results and presenting their final products at a symposium last week.

Research project titles and recognition:

1) Density of the boring clam Lithophaga laevigata and the snail Dendropoma spp. in Porites coral heads: A function of Varying Water Quality? Brian Dang, Irrawaddy Lamouth, Mariam Tabatabaee

2) Variation in Benthic Community Composition of a Reef Flat in Mo’orea, French Polynesia. Erin Duffy, Emily Ferrari, Binal Patel, Von Phan, Jennifer Huynh

3) The effects of small-scale boat channels on coral cover and fish diversity in Moorea, French Polynesia. Jessica Bergman, Justin Keller, Grace Matteson.

4) Change of State: The Long-Term Impacts of Dredging on a Coral Reef in Mo'orea, French Polynesia. Emily Anderson, Aislinn Dunne, Christopher Leber, Regina Zweng.

Great job everyone, and congrats to those who graduated this quarter!

Find out more information about the students specific research projects in Moorea by clicking the "Science" tab above.

Check out the UCLA website for more information about the Marine Biology Quarter:

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