Hey family. I know you’re probably not going to be thrilled with this, but after talking about it for…..oh, 7 years, I finally got the tattoo I wanted. Feel free to call to discuss when you’re less mad. 😉 kidding.
It is the Southern Cross constellation, which you can find (among other places) on the Australian flag and in the sky of the Southern hemisphere. I remember looking up at this constellation many many times while laying on my hammock on the balcony of my dorm room at James Cook University.
On to more exciting topics….
I have been running some new experiments lately. I have collected a lot of good data and am almost 1/2 done with this project now. 14 hr lab days are starting to kill me though. These experiments look similar to my previous experiments in setup. The only main difference is that instead of introducing a single odor into the animals nose, I introduce combinations of odors.
These are called electro-olfactogram experiments. Basically, there’s a ray (or shark) in a tank with a tube sticking in its nose through which I can deliver odors. There is also an electrode in there to record the response of the animal if it can smell the odors I am delivering. The electrode connects back to my computer where I can see a dip in the trace if they smell something.
Here is the ray during the experiment. You can see he has pooped in a last effort of retaliation. (Note: I am not hurting this animal in any way – though I doubt he is happy he has to smell stuff all day while laying upside down)
Close up view of the electrode and the tube that delivers the odors. These are both positioned in the nostils.
Reading and measuring the responses. (Salty dog shirt! Woohoo!)
Survival tactic for a very long day.
In the lab where I work, other researchers keep juvenile sea turtles. Here is a little loggerhead turtle.
They are currently testing different ways to keep a tracking device on them for a short amount of time. This guy gets to try out a mini backpack, which looks ridiculous! I wonder if he gets self conscious wearing a label that says “dummy”.
As I mentioned before, my friend Morgan is moving to Hawaii. She has 2 cats, which must have multiple tests and shots before they can join her in paradise, so I have volunteered to take care of them until that day. Here is Zhoule getting acquainted with my bearded dragon, Diji. Little stinker. The other cat, Nora, likes to paw at his enclosure and meow. How friendly of her. 🙂 More pictures of these wacky cats to come! (Note: Allergies are doing fine with a little help from some Singulair)
Sunday we had a surprise BBQ/Badminton/Bday party for our friend James. Here are some people stretching before we got underway.
One requirement was to dress ridiculously – headbands and wristbands were a must!
Ok, since I am writing this blog instead of working on my manuscript, I shall get back to work now. Hope you all have a fabulous week!