Seahorses the theme for 2011 VIMS Marine Science Day
Visitors' CenterVisitors enjoy the exhibits, aquaria, and life-size models in VIMS Visitors' Center during Marine Science Day.
Scallop EyesFrom L: Madeline Allburn, Isabella Weiner, and Clare Allburn learn what it's like to see the world through the eyes of a scallop during Marine Science Day at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science.
Underwater RobotChris Petrone (far L) watches as visitors drive a mini-robotic submarine during Marine Science Day. Petrone is a Marine Education Specialist with the Sea Grant program at VIMS.
Touch TankVisitors examine a spider crab taken from the Visitors' Center touch tank.
Fish TaggingJon Lucy (L) explains fish tagging to two young visitors. Lucy is a Marine Recreation Specialist with the VA Sea Grant program at VIMS.
Bottom DwellersVIMS graduate student Treda Smith talks about weird and wonderful bottom dwellers during Marine Science Day
Fish PrintingYoung visitors practice their fish and scallop printing in the Children's Pavilion.
Fish PrintsA selection of the fish and scallop prints created by visitors to Marine Science Day.
Seafood Cooking DemoKelly Turner, Chef Instructor at the Culinary Institute of Virginia (L), joins with Sea Grant Seafood Education Specialist Vicki Clark (2nd from L) to serve scallops during a Seafood Cooking Demonstration.
VIMS grad student Matt Whalen (L) shows a visitor how to use a microscope to view the small shrimp-like crustaceans that inhabit local sea grass beds.
Hidden PipefishVisitors learn about camouflage by counting pipefish hidden within sea grass.
DNAWendi Ribeiro, a graduate student in the Marine and Aquaculture Molecular Genetics program at VIMS (L), shows young visitors how to prepare samples for DNA analysis.
Blue CrabA young visitor examines a blue crab.
Blue CrabsVisitors learn about blue crabs.
Aquarium DisplayA visitor examines an aquarium display.
ZooplanktonKate Ruck shows a zooplankton sample to a visitor. Ruck is an incoming graduate student.
TEMVIMS professor Wolfgang Vogelbein (C) instructs Porter Doughty (L) and Michael Luck (R) in the use of the transmission electron microscope (TEM).
Green ScreenA pair of young visitors prepare for the Virtual Scientist "green screen" activity. Results of this “Scientist for a Few Seconds” activity will soon be available on the VIMS YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/user/vimsvideos).
CakeGummi worms and fish occupy the "seafloor" as part of a hands-on activity in which visitors take "sediment cores" from a chocolate layer cake.
Sediment CoresVisitors take "sediment cores" from a chocolate layer cake.
The "seafloor" following sediment coring. Unlike real sediment cores, these cores were good to eat.
AcrobatGraduate student Daniel Maxey (R) explains how VIMS scientists use the Acrobat sensor to measure dissolved oxygen in Chesapeake Bay.
Fish CollectionGraduate student Dan Dutton (C) describes a specimen from the VIMS Fish Collection.
Seine NetVisitors check their seine net for marine life.
AlgaeA young visitor gets a hands-on feel for green algae.
SharkLogan Miesowitz of Hayes becomes a shark.
MappingVIMS scientist Tami Rudnicky explains the intricacies of mapping to 3rd-grader Jasmine Tomson of Gloucester.
Seine NetVisitors draw their seine net from the York River.
Parade PrepStudents from Yorktown Elementary prepare to march in the Parade of Marine Life.
SCUBA DiversBen Malmquist (L) and Caleb Richardson (R) dressed as SCUBA divers for the Parade of Marine Life.
Students from Yorktown Elementary march in the Parade of Marine Life.
Scallop and AnglerfishHannah Mclean (L) and Sarah McGuire of the Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve program at VIMS show off their scallop and angler fish costumes following the Parade of Marine Life.
Deep-sea FishVIMS graduate student CJ Sweetman shows a deep-sea fish to a visitor.
Best of ShowMonet Wilson, a 6th grader at Peasley Middle School in Gloucester, won Best of Parade for her seahorse costume in the Parade of Marine Life during Marine Science Day at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science on May 30.
Oyster HatcheryResearcher Karen Hudson (R) explains the workings of the VIMS Oyster Hatchery. Hudson is with the Aquaculture Genetics and Breeding Technology Center at VIMS.
ScallopsHannah McLean (R) talks about scallops. McClean is with the Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve program at VIMS.
Waiting for WadersScott Lerberg (foreground) helps visitors don their waders before seining. Lerberg is Stewardship Coordinator with the Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve program at VIMS.
Dip NetA young visitor uses a dip net to search for marine life in the York River.
SeiningVisitors seine for marine life in the York River.
Tire PressureSandi Buchheister of Hayes (L) looks on as VIMS professor Rebecca Dickhut (R) checks her recommended tire pressure.
Photo - of -
by David Malmquist
May 11, 2011
Marine Science Day, the Virginia Institute of Marine
Science’s annual open house, will take place on Saturday, May 21st from
10 am to 3 pm on the VIMS bayfront campus in Gloucester Point.
Now in its ninth year, the popular event is offered free of
charge and proceeds rain or shine. The goal of Marine Science Day is to give
the public a behind-the-scenes look at how VIMS research in Chesapeake Bay and
around the world helps empower Virginians to protect and restore our coastal environment.
The Institute honors a different animal each year during
Marine Science Day, with this year’s choice being the seahorse. Visitors will
be able to partake in several activities related to these winsome creatures, including
a "seahorse scramble" and a "seahorse search." Visitors
will also be able to the make a seahorse hat and stick puppet, and to compete
in the "Seahorse Slurping Challenge," in which they'll use
common kitchen utensils to test the effectiveness of different feeding methods
for capturing small prey.
Something old, something new
Susan Maples, VIMS’ Public Outreach Coordinator, says this
year’s event will “feature several new hands-on activities in addition to
favorites from years past.”
One new activity is a "Making Waves" photo booth that will allow visitors
to picture themselves on a surfboard atop a wave—an image donated by
world-renowned Hawaiian photographer Clark Little—while VIMS researchers
provide information about the science of waves and their importance in moving
seafloor sediments. Participants will later be able to share their “hang-ten”
moment with family and friends via the VIMS website.
One of the event’s perennial favorites is the Parade of
Marine Life, in which children and adults from around Tidewater walk through
the VIMS campus wearing handmade creature costumes including seahorses,
jellyfish, sharks, dolphins, and blue crabs. This year’s parade features a new,
more compact route with a surprising twist.
Science from scientists
Attendees will be able to visit display
booths to learn from VIMS researchers how they help manage blue crabs, restore oysters, survey fish
populations, unravel biodiversity, monitor water quality, find and remove
"ghost" crab pots, and reduce the accidental capture of diamondback
terrapins. Other activities will introduce VIMS’ international work in
The younger set will have the chance to learn with fun
crafts and activities in the Children's Pavilion. Kids and parents will also
have the chance to collect and observe organisms from the York River, and to tour
the Institute’s Teaching Marsh and Shellfish Hatchery.
In addition to these daylong activities, Marine Science Day
offers a series of events that begin at specific times. These include a 10-minute
mini-lecture on marine careers, a seafood cooking demonstration, a performance
by the Hysterically Correct Pirate Show, and more. Details on these and all the
other activities are available in the Marine Science Day program, which is
available ahead of time at www.vims.edu/msd.
VIMS, one of the leading
marine centers in the U.S., provides research, education, and advisory service
to help protect and restore Chesapeake Bay and coastal waters. The
Institute offers Master’s and Ph.D. degrees through its School of Marine
Science, part of the College of William and Mary.