Saturday, November 27, 2010


Karen Silkwood worked in a nuclear facility where she helped produce plutonium rods, which were extremely toxic. People from the plant began getting sick and showing signs of radiation, and the plant had a lack of safety regulations. Karen Silkwood ended up with high levels of radiation as well. The plant tried to cover up their responsibility in the workers getting sick. Karen joined a labor union. The plant relocated Karen to a place where the photomicrographs of the fuel rods were reviewed and often changed. Karen went to a conference in D.C. where she promised to steal some of the photomicrographs that were altered. She also documented other things about the plant in a notebook to submit to the labor union and people she met in D.C. The plant tried to accuse her of stealing plutonium.  The movie did a great job of showing how the company manipulated multiple situations to make it look like Karen was at fault. In fact, they even convince some of the workers that she is the one getting everyone sick. The movie also pushed boundaries by showing one of the first lesbian relationships in film. Silkwood showed Karen Silkwood’s story well and invoked questions like: How did this company get away with having so few safety regulations for that long? How could the workers manipulating the slides and the plant overseers let so many people get sick? Why did Karen have to do secret work for the union; why couldn’t the officials in D.C. just order an investigation based on the number of sick workers and an eye witness?

Hitchiti Experiment Forest

The scientific name for wild ginger is Hexastylis arifolia. It is native to Georgia and grows best in shady areas with average soil. The leaves are heart-shaped and it has a “spicy” aroma.
Leaf litter decomposition:
“Stage 1 shows recently added dead material.
By stage 2 much of the material has broken into smaller pieces and some of the easily degradable cell materials such as sugars and starches have been assimilated by microorganisms.
At stage 3 you need to look closely to recognize small plant fragments and the appearance of dark colored organic matter is obvious.
By stage 4 there is no recognizable plant materials and the dark colored organic matter has been incorporated into soil aggregates”
The scientific name for the southern pine beetle is Dendroctonus frontalis. They are common in the southeastern United States, and they feed on various forms of pine trees. They can destroy acres at a time, especially in outbreaks of the species. They are the most destructive insect in Georgia and cost millions of dollars in annual losses.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Favorite Aquatic Animals

Phytoplankton- Diatom
                Diatoms live in cool water and are parts of large colonies. They are the largest phytoplankton and can produce up to 100000 times a month.

Zooplankton- Meroplankton
                Meroplankton are plankton for their larval stage and part of the reef the rest of their lives. Meroplankton includes sea urchins, starfish, sea squirts, most of the sea snails and slugs, crabs, lobsters, octopus, marine worms and most reef fishes.

Aquatic Macrophyte- Bryophytes
                Bryophytes are small green plants including Hornworts, Liverworts, and mosses. They reproduce by spore production and are usually only one cell deep.

Fish- Lionfish
                Lionfish are marine fish that live in rocky crevices. Lionfish are venomous and use this as a defense mechanism. It has very fast reflexes and is camouflaged for the most part.

Crustacean- Crayfish
                Crayfish are freshwater crustaceans found in ponds and streams. They are scavengers.

Mammal- Duckbill Platypus
                The Duckbill Platypus is a land dweller, but spends much of its time in the water. It can open its eyes, ears, and nostrils underwater. It is an egg-laying mammal.