• Question: What sort of things do you do when you are a marine biologist?? :)

    Asked by madsmith98 to Anil, Blanka, Cees, Emma, Mike on 25 Jun 2012.
    • Photo: Blanka Sengerova

      Blanka Sengerova answered on 25 Jun 2012:

      I think you spend some time collecting samples from the sea and then you will probably spend some time in the lab making measurements on them in the lab and analysing those. So maybe it’s like geology where you have some fieldwork, then work in the lab and then analysis, but maybe Cees would be better placed to comment. I am not a marine biologist, but sometimes I wish I was working with slightly bigger things than just all sorts of different solutions in small 1,5mL tubes… 🙂

    • Photo: Cees Van der Land

      Cees Van der Land answered on 26 Jun 2012:

      Thanks Blanka, I would call myself a marine geologist, but I have been on research cruises with enough marine biologists to know what they are doing!

      2 examples:
      On a research ship a marine biologist collected samples from big bivalves which were living at the bottom of the deep sea (below 300 meters). Almost no sunlight reaches there. We had to lower camera’s (with big lights) and a boxcore (a cylinder which is pushed into the sea bottom to collect undisturbed samples) to bring them up. She (the marine biologist) then cut off a small bit from the soft bit to analyse to found out what they were eating. It turned out that the bivalves were not feeding from particles falling from above (which is what normally happens) but that they lived on nutrients coming from seeps (leakage) from the sea bottom.
      A friend of mine who is still studying to become a marine biologist worked as a animal keeper in Seaworld Orlando. She is now studying to learn more about whales, how they communicate.

      So, like Blanka said, a bit of fieldwork and a lot of labwork!

    • Photo: Emma Trantham

      Emma Trantham answered on 29 Jun 2012:

      I don’t think I can improve upon what Blanka and Cees have said but I will just leave you a link to another description of what a marine biologist does: http://www.prospects.ac.uk/marine_scientist_job_description.htm