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2016 Sigma Xi Student Research Symposium Print

sigma xi 2016

Student research conducted by Undergraduate Student Brett Pugliese, Graduate Student Jon Klein, and Undergraduate Student Dina Torjman was presented at the 27th Annual Sigma Xi Student Research Symposium held at St. Joseph’s University, Philadelphia, April 15th 2016.  Student research presented at the Symposium was conducted in collaboration with Biology faculty members Dr. Erin Gestl and Dr. Greg Turner.

Special Seminar Presentation: Dr. James Spotila Print
sea turtles

Saving Sea Turtles in a Modern World

Dr. James Spotila
Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science
Drexel University

7:00 PM, Wednesday, April 6, 2016
Room 151 SSL (Schmucker Science Center)

Dr. Spotila is a biologist, specializing on sea turtles and conservation biology. He is the author of the books Sea Turtles and Saving Sea Turtles. 

Students, faculty, staff and the general public are welcome to attend.
For more information, contact Dr. Frank Fish at 610-436-2460 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
Biology Highlights 2016 Print

Biology undergraduate Cheryl Mauch, Dr. Jessica Schedlbauer, and Biology undergraduate Lukas Bernhardt presented "Baseline soil pH and texture at the Mount Cuba Center’s experimental reforestation experiment, Hockessin, DE" at the 2016 Virtual Poster Showcase, American Geophysical Union, March 30-April 28.

Biology Undergraduate Student Nicole Bishop was awarded a grant from the WCU College of Arts and Sciences Undergraduate Research Fund to support her project, “Effects of Lead Toxicity on Hatching Success and Embryonic Development in a Freshwater Snail (Physa acuta).”

Dr. Frank Fish hosted program review meeting for the Office of Naval Research (ONR)-Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) on “Bio-inspired flexible propulsors for fast, efficient swimming: What physics are we missing?” at West Chester University, PA on March 8-9, 2016.

Dr. Frank Fish and biology graduate student William Gough presented a talk “Morphological design and flexibility in the flukes of cetaceans” at the ONR-MURI Program Review Meeting: Hydrodynamics of non-traditional propulsion bio-inspired flexible propulsors for fast, efficient swimming: What physics are we missing? held at West Chester University, PA on March 8-9, 2016.

Dr. Frank Fish made a presentation “Natural swimmers and the development of advanced biomimetic technologies” to the 7th grade class of the Village Community School in New York City, NY on March 10, 2016.

Dr. Frank Fish has his research on the Humpback whale tubercles and Mantabot on exhibit in “The Machine Inside: Biomechanics” that is currently at the Boston Museum of Science. The exhibit, which was created by the Field Museum, Chicago, will be on display at various location through 2020. 

Dr. Jessica Schedlbauer published the following: Schedlbauer, J.L., L. Nadolny, & J. Woolfrey. 2016. Practising conservation biology in a virtual rainforest world. Journal of Biological Education DOI:10.1080/00219266.2015.1117510

Dr. Frank Fish published a book chapter titled “Hydrodynamics” in the book  Marine Mammal Physiology: Requisites for Ocean Living  from CRC Press (2016). The chapter was co-authored with Dr. Jeremy Goldbogen of Stanford University and Jean Potvin of St. Louis University. 

Dr. Frank Fish presented the paper “Flexibility of the flukes of free-swimming cetaceans” at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology that was held in Portland, OR on January 3-7, 2016. The paper was co-authored with WCU graduate students Will Gough and Kelsey Tennett, WCU, undergraduate student Danielle Adams, and Dr. Judy St Leger of SeaWorld. Also at the meeting, Dr. Fish co-authored the papers “Assessment of swimming records for thunniform propulsors”, which was presented by WCU undergraduate student Danielle Adams and co-authored with WCU undergraduate student Griffin Lewis, “ Physical properties of the sub-dermal fibrous layers in cetacean tail flukes”, which was presented by WCU graduate student Will Gough, “Kinematics of terrestrial locomotion of northern elephant seals”, which was presented by WCU graduate student Kelsey Tennett and co-authored with Daniel Costa of the University of California Santa Cruz, and “Effects of fluke flexibility on flow modulation in orca’s steady swimming”, which was presented by Yan Ren and co-authored with Dr. Haibo Dong of the University of Virginia.

Cool Previous Biology Highlights (2015)

2016 JEB Calendar Print
The 2016 Journal of Experimental Biology Calendar included the above image that was derived from the following article published by WCU Biology graduate student William Gough and Dr. Frank Fish: Gough, W. T., Farina, S. C. and Fish, F. E. 2015. Aquatic burst locomotion by hydroplaning and running in common eiders (Somateria mollissima). Journal of Experimental Biology 218: 1632-1638.
Bio 387 - Invertebrate Zoology Print

Bio387During the summer of 2015, students from 5 PASSHE Universities (Millersville, West Chester, East Stroudsburg, Kutztown and Lock Haven) experienced the invertebrate fauna of the Chincoteague Bay Field Station (formerly Wallops Island Marine Science Consortium).

The course (BIO 387 – Invertebrate Zoology), was instructed by Dr. S. Anne Boettger of West Chester University. Invertebrate Zoology is the study of animals lacking a backbone, a group that includes more than 90% of all animal species. As part of the course students gained first hand experience with a variety of large equipment that included the RV Parker (a research vessel that was used to examine the Atlantic marine environments on and off the continental shelf), the Flatfish and the Mollusk (two shallow water monitors that were used within Chincoteague Bay), and sea kayaks.

The location of Chincoteague Bay Field Station provides easy access to all environments along the Eastern Shore, the Chesapeake Bay and the deeper waters of the Atlantic Coast including sandy beaches, mudflats, rocky environments, salt marshes and seagrass beds. In addition, its location allowed visits to educational resources such as VIMS (Virginia Institute of Marine Science), industrial sites (shedding houses for softshell crabs and oyster/clam farms) and natural preserves (including Indian River Inlet, DE; Assateague Island, VA; Savage Neck Beach, VA and Kiptopeke State Park, VA).

Cool....Bio 387 Image Gallery

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