Nova Southeastern University master’s student Dawn Bickham assists with the shipment of coral colonies to the Florida Coral Disease Rescue Project. (Provided by Abigail Renegar)

Grad Student Bickham Helps Capture A Clearer Picture of How Corals Respond to Oil

Coral reefs provide food, shelter, and habitat to thousands of organisms living in the Gulf of Mexico. However, their vulnerability to physical and toxicological damage increases corals’ risk during environmental disturbances, particularly in shallow water where dangers from coastline proximity include wastewater pollution, moving sediment, salinity and nutrient changes, scavengers, and boating and fishing activities.

Grad Student Snider Examines Seaside Sparrows Diet for Food Web Impacts from Oiling

Seaside Sparrows live and forage in coastal Gulf of Mexico marshlands, some of which were oiled following the Deepwater Horizon incident. Sparrows in these oiled marshes likely ingested invertebrates that were also exposed to oil. Allison Snider uses DNA analyses to investigate potential long-term changes in the diets of Seaside Sparrows following Deepwater Horizon.