Eastern Michigan University launches jellyfish research course

Eastern Michigan University launches jellyfish research course
Eastern Michigan University launches jellyfish research course

YPSILANTI, Mich. – A course on the study of freshwater jellyfish was added to the Eastern Michigan University course catalog this fall.

Students perform fieldwork in the course by searching for organisms in a nearby lake.

“Knowledge gained through research is such a fundamental aspect of biology,” Cara Shillington, professor of biology at Eastern Cara Shillington, said in a statement. “This course gives students a better idea of ​​what it means to be a scientist and makes this title their own.”

As part of the course, students review the literature, formulate research questions, and propose future projects for the study of jellyfish.

Biology graduate student Rachel Koski said she has long wanted to study marine biology and enjoys the fieldwork involved in the course.

“Freshwater jellyfish are an invasive species now found on every continent except Antarctica, but their appearances each year are somewhat unpredictable, making data collection difficult,” Koski said in a statement. “Compared to other jellyfish species, there is a lack of literature on freshwater jellyfish, so being able to research them and gain more knowledge about their ecology and distribution is awesome.”

“I wanted to learn more about one of the most amazing and unknown species in some Michigan lakes,” Kyle Martin, senior environmental scientist, said in a statement. “As a native of Ypsilanti, I always enjoy learning about the different organisms that live here.”

After spending time in the water filming and observing jellyfish, the students are back in class this semester.

Shillington said there are very few long-term field studies of freshwater jellyfish and that she plans to offer the course in the fall during the peak of jellyfish activity in the years to come.

Known as hydrojellyfish, jellyfish are small and bell-shaped. They were first observed in Michigan in the 1930s, according to the United States Geological Survey.

“I got to swim alongside freshwater fish and jellyfish while they were in their natural habitat – an experience that wouldn’t be possible without this course,” Martin said in a statement.

Copyright 2022 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit – All Rights Reserved.

. University Michigan launches courses on research on jellyfish

PREV What to expect on election night
NEXT Utah lawmakers review school phone bans, social media restrictions for young people