Hundreds Take in Sun, Fun, and Research at Woods Hole Science Stroll

Hundreds Take in Sun, Fun, and Research at Woods Hole Science Stroll

By Hannah Knighton
Photos by Megan Costello

More than 1,500 people flocked to the fifth annual Woods Hole Science Stroll on August 10. Families roamed the streets of Woods Hole to take part in science demos and hands-on activities hosted by the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, NOAA Fisheries (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), Sea Education Association, United States Coast Guard, and other science groups.

Fish printing in the MBL Club was among the popular stops in the Stroll. Alan Steinbach, a Falmouth physician and the mastermind behind the project said, “I do fish printing with families because it gives them the chance to create an art project together that’s almost sure-fire to please them all.” Using a variety of real, but no longer living, fish, families painted them with vivid colors and pressed them onto plain white T-shirts. “Fish printing is also a chance to dignify, or at least remember, the fish,” Steinbach said.

From left, Claire Dunploy, 3, and Jane Grye, 3, listen to instructions and choose paint colors to create their fish-inspired fashions.

With her fish fully painted, Claire Dunploy is ready for the printing process.

Jane Grye proudly holds up her finished product.

Taylor Sakmar, senior cephalopod culture specialist at the MBL, displays two Hawaiian bobtail squid and a California two-spot octopus at the MBL Cephalopod Initiative’s exhibit.

2-year-old Seneca Vannoni-Corsa looks for a well-camouflaged Hawaiian bobtail squid at the MBL Cephalopod Initiative’s table.

The MBL’s Marine Resources Center displayed chain catshark embryos inside their egg casings. These embryos are about 2 months from hatching. Their distinct blue eye spots can be seen inside the egg casings.

Cameron Duquette, 10, and Emily Duquette, 6, look at catshark, squid, and skate embryos at the MBL Marine Resources Center’s table.

Rut Pedrosa-Pámies, a research scientist with MBL’s Ecosystems Center, explains oceanic flux and how particles cycle through the deep ocean. In the tank is a model representation of real research mooring lines with sediment traps at three levels of ocean depth.

Pedrosa-Pámies explains how microplastics build up in coastal and oceanic environments. Here, she demonstrates how to take and process sediment samples. This demo helps to show that over time, more and more plastics have built up in the sediment due to both increased production and use of plastics.

MBL Education Aquarist Lauren Smith tells visitors about major scientific discoveries that have stemmed from studies of the horseshoe crab.

Visitors explore the underside of a horseshoe crab, one of many marine organisms that visitors could interact with at the MBL’s touch tank exhibit.