School of squid

Bermuda Research Project

Bermuda, along with most subtropical and tropical areas near the Caribbean, is home to thriving populations of Caribbean reef squid, Sepioteuthis sepiodi. S. sepiodi has long been a subject of study for behavioral scientists. Cephalopods are known for their large brains, the largest in the invertebrates. Caribbean reef squid, unlike most cephalopods, are social. This, combined with their vivid, expressive skin makes them common models for behavioral studies. Cephalopods absolutely fascinate me, and after my first dip in the water with these squid I couldn't get enough. I decided to design my project as a review of their behavior, with less hypothesis and more of a focus on using established observational tools practically.

This study includes analysis of behavior observed in response to various stimuli and the alignment of those observations with previous literature. In order to standardize the study with the previous literature and the photoshop software designed by James B. Wood to standardize the categorizations of those behaviors.

Through the use of underwater video cameras over two hours of video footage of the squid off of the Bermuda islands was taken and analyzed.

Carcinus classic

Nahant Research Project

The purpose of this study was to establish precedence for a larger study of colormorphs of green shore crabs in Nahant, MA. The green shore crab (Carcinus maenas) is native to the European coast. Much of its life history is known, and the color variations of their carapace are well documented.

Previous studies have shown correlations between carapace colors, life stages, and life history strategies. The dominant color of the adult green shore crab is a mottled dark green with blue, though a less common life history strategy results in a red carapace. Juveniles, however, exhibit a wide variety of colors and patterns from yellow to white to red to tan, mottled, speckled, and with strange patterns. Most studies on the green shore crabs have taken place in native Europe, while very few have looked at carapace color presence and variation in the Eastern United States.

In this study, I systematically searched for as many green shore crabs as possible, and measured the width and length of the carapace, the location and substrate they were found in, a description of the color, and a color-balanced photograph of the carapace. A total of twenty crabs were sampled, exhibiting a large variety in color and size. Both the red and green adult life strategies were observed.

All images taken by Erin Ross