Saturday, November 29, 2008


Hi, I'm YI.
 I introduce myself a bit. I'm a 4th−year student of MISE.   
My theme of graduation thesis is distribution of Zoanthid in Okinawa.  I'm interested in everything about Zoanthid. (lifecycle, taxonomy, evolution etc..) But I  know only a few things about Zoanthid. I have to study hard.

By the way, 
I've come back to Okinawa yesterday night from Shizuoka. I'll show you a few Shizuoka pictures.

This picture is view from the conference site. 
You know, Mt. Fuji! Beautiful.   

I went to the aquarium of To-kai university.
I found this beautiful Zoanthid but I don't know which species it is...


After the conference, I went sightseeing.
This is a picture of Oden.
Maybe not so many people know but Shizuoka is famous for Oden.  It's was tasty.

That's all.
I brought some souvenirs(fish paste stick and green tea) to the lab. Feel free to eat and drink!
Bye                            Yuka

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Today, Catalina's Birthday!! We celebrated her in the lab.

And we ate Birthday cake.

I bought this cake(Tube cake or chiffon cake..,) at the sweet shop "Minamotoya"in Nanjyo city.

Happy birthday Catalina !!

Have a good birthday !!


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I'm TF

I am said to write this blog in the JCRS conference...

We went to 11th JCRS conference, and this was my first presentation of research. I am so tired because I got nerveous. But it was good experience for me to talk a lot of people without lab. menber. so, thank you for everyone who talk with me.

I think I should introduce me. My name is Takuma Fujii. I'm from Tsukuba in Ibaraki prefecture. I am not good at English because I study English little when I went to high school. I am learning English.

I wanted to study about birds or wild cat living in Okinawa when I enterd University of the Ryukyus. I am researching a undescribed Zoantharia species.

Because I was interested in Jamie (strange foreigner) rather than zoanthids when I say why I chose this lab.

I am interested in sea slugs, shrimps and gobies......ofcourse zoanthids. I am worring about what will I do in the future.

The ideal is this. Get up → breakfast → go diving → lunch and sleeping a little → go diving → free time → dinner →

The reality is severe.. I will find other future.

So, next time, I think Yuka or Eriko or Catalina should write anything. I want to read (^^)

Japan Coral Reef Society Conference in Shizuoka

YM, YI, TF, and JDR went to the 11th JCRS conference, held at Granship Convention Center in Shizuoka. All four of us gave poster presentations, and it went very well.

For the three students it was their first time to give a presentation at a conference, and the experience should serve them well in the future.

Things we learned at JCRS:
1. Many people study coral; few work on minor taxa.
2. Trains can be exciting when you have only 1 minute to transfer.
3. Networking is a key skill!

Check out the pix - it was fun!

Meeting 2008.11.26

Busy day!
Present: FS, MO, YM, CA, ES, TF, YH, YS, MH
Absent: YI (Shizuoka), JDR (prof meeting)

Here is the news:

1. CA and FS: copy your gaijin card, passport, and visa, keep them in a safe spot just in case.
2. Microscope and digital camera now ready to use! Thanks to MO and ES.
3. Primers - must be ordered by this Friday (FS, CA, YM, JDR).
4. Diving around Korijima - end of December!
5. FS will go to Hokkaido sometime next spring.
6. 2 more 2nd year students wish to come do research with us; now 5 people!
7. Shopping: lots on the wish list; JDR will order what he can.
8. YS showed us a video of him winning his pro debut fight in about 40 seconds. Don't get him mad!
9. Tanks: YM.
10. Seminar - do NOT forget to prepare a summary (Mon before presentation) and also to inform the chair of your title (Fri before). Send the PDF to the chair as well.
11. YS and YH: make webmail addresses.
12. YS: lab rule sheet please!

We then cleaned up the experiment room; it looks great! Thanks to everyone for their help.

Today's picture: Serious people at the JCRS conference last weekend!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Lab meeting 2008.11.19

Lots of small notices today...

Present: YS, TF, MH, YH, ES, YI, YM, CA, MO, JDR
Absent: FS (Europe)

1. New dissecting microscope and camera have arrived. Set up will be done this week, so ES can start work on Palythoa gametes. The camera can be mounted on the microscope, and there is also an underwater housing. Macro of 1 cm, and 12.1 MP, so we can really zoom in on the smaller reef denizens.
2. Lab fees: 200 yen/month. Please pay if you have forgotten.
3. 3rd years: Slippers, lab rules (YS), and please make a webmail address for seminar PDFs etc. (YS, YH).
4. Please tell JDR your IP addresses so he can keep track of them in the future.
5. If you are interested in studying overseas (undergrads only), please check with the student office ASAP - much info there.
6. To buy: computer locks, erector set for drying wetsuits. Please keep the lab windows locked at night for safety!
7. We will throw away the large green shelf outside the lab.
8. Primers - order by 11/30. YM wants new soft Concepcion et al 2008 coral primer set, CA and JDR will make some others too.
9. Nozawa-san from Kuroshio Lab will visit Thursday.
10. TF, YI, YM and JDR will go the 11th Japan Coral Reef Conference in Shizuoka this weekend. Check here for updates!
11. 3rd years and Masters seminar: Please prepare resumes, and send PDFs of the paper you are studying to the chair so it can be distributed to all members.
12. Tanks: this week: MO

13. Today's pictures were of Churaumi Aquarium training by YI. Next week, YS.

Picture above is of bubble anemone at Sunabe last week.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Lab meeting 2008.11.12

Present: MO, TF, YI, ES, YM, YS, MH, YH, CA, JDR
Absent: FS (Europe)

Not too much again today - everyone is busy with seminar preparation etc.

1. Money from Hedo and/or JCRS flights: YM and YH.
2. CA - trip to Osaka? Check with Intl. Student Office.
3. Friday a.m., go to the beach depending on weather for YH's research. YH, JDR, CA, ES, TF.
4. Jisshu: Friday night - Odo Beach during low tide... YM and JDR, TF will come along.
5. Tank this week: YS.
6. Makeman shopping: lights for TF and MH; salinity meter, blank DVDs, tissue. JDR will go Thursday p.m.
7. Part-time job: JDR needs transcription of Japanese interviews - TF will do it.
8. Pictures: Oops, YI and JDR mixed up, JDR showed pictures of Australia, next week is YI.
9. Computer (Windows XP with PAUP, net, Adobe Illustrator, etc.) now in lab, microscopes are moved to center table. Dissecting scope and mount ready to go but waiting for digital camera to arrive.
10. We have 36 l of tax-free ethanol (99%) = not for molecular but good for preserving etc. When you use it please fill out the paperwork in the lab by the formalin paperwork. If you have questions ask MO.

Today's picture is from the soft coral gardens during Friday's dive in Sunabe...

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sunabe Daiving

Today, we ( jamie and Catalina ,Takuma, Hibino,Eriko) dived at Sunabe.

After the diving, we ate burger in the restaurant (looks like Cafe..)

Burger is not big,a little expensive for the student, but it is very good !!!

And I order tortilla. delicious too!!

Let's go again !!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

New book

Here is the first draft of very great book on chilean underwater fauna, with a particularly interesting zoanthid chapter ;o)

The main authors of the book, Vreni and Gunther, with me in the middle...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

News from Europe

Takuma was definitively the most successful in histology!

After obtaining successful results withTakuma and Yanagi-san in Chiba, I had a wonderful flight over snowy Siberia (now I really want to go there!) and finally landed in Geneva before heading to the World Marine Biodiversity Conference in Valencia (Spain).

La Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, the conference site with great architecture

European way of moving around

The conference is great, unfortunately I would need some help as there is three session running in parallel and I still did not find a non lethal way to divide myself in three parts.

Two thumbs up for the auditorium with an aquarium background, when in some very rare cases the talks get boring it is fun to watch the fishes.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Lab meeting 2008.11.5

Short and sweet today.
Present: YM, YI, MH, YS, YH, CA
Absent: FS, TF (Chiba), MO (Tokyo), ES (Yokohama)

1. Internet - no illegal downloading please! Big Brother is evidently watching.
2. Car accident last weekend on the university loop - be careful, especially after rain.
3. Tank manager this week is YI.
4. Any lab things needed? Pincettes (ES and YM), light (MH), waterproof notes (all), specimen labels (how much?).
5. Taiwan/Aus collaboration potentail - check, and also discuss at JCRS.
6. Two 2nd year students are interested in our lab, so please invite them as buddies for trips to the ocean, and they can help while learning about our lab.
7. YM - presentation on glitter orchids - great! Thanks.
8. JDR back from Aus, great time!

Next week YI and Churaumi pix.

Today's picture is a giant giant clam (70 kg maybe) at the GBR, taken by JDR last week.

Monday, November 3, 2008


Here are some pics of Chiba, where TF and I (FS) are learning histology with Yanagi-sensei who is a very good professor. We are both totally enthusiastic with histology and nematocysts studies as we can see "immediate" results and it's quite fun to do.
Takuma concentrated on the selection of the polyps to cut.
In counterpart we showed Yanagi-san DNA extractions, and we will show him PCRs in the next days.
We enjoyed to go get some samples while the polyps were getting embedded.

Smily happy fish in the collection of the Chiba Museum
Smily fishes in my plate, in the menu: blue marlin, katsuo (the one on the way back to south, supposed to be different than the one from spring) and some other delicious fishes.

Now the polyps are embedded, the paraffin is hard so we need to trim our paraffin block and fix them so tomorrow we can start cutting, it looks easy but it is real art and f.....g difficult (at least for me and my two left hands).
Tomorrow will be a very long day slicing polyps and hoping that the sand will not mess everything...

Sunday, November 2, 2008

In the news

Our Corallizoanthus work made the Okinawa newspapers, front page in one. Here are the links on the net (in Japanese - be warned):

Nice to have get some publicity on the lesser-known organisms!

New additions to the library

Here are new books in the lab library:

1. Corals in Space and Time - JEN Veron.
2. AIMS Annual Report 2007.
3. Soft Corals and Sea Fans - K Fabricius & P. Alderslade
4. Hermatypic Corals of Japan - JEN Veron
5. Forgot the title (YI has it) but Surveying Methods of Coral Reefs or something like that, by S. Englsih et al.

JDR back from Aus

Hi all,

Back from Aus and a great meeting at AIMS, with a layover in Taipei and discussion with Allen Chen. Here are my thoughts/news/ideas on things in no particular order:

1. Marine biodiversity is getting a big push, not only in reefs, but in other areas, like the deep, lagoons, continental plains, etc. FS was right that we need to dive in "less beautiful" places!
2. Technology is going to be huge in the near future. This is obvious, but things like AUVs and ROVs, remote sensors, etc. will change how we measure biological data. We need to get on the wave.
3. Japan is VERY far behind in some areas, particularly education of university-level students, and facilities. Ryudai and almost every other university I have seen here would be put to shame by what is happening in Aus. I hope someone higher up in Japan wakes up before it is too late! One concrete example: use of the internet and computers as a teaching tool. Japan is still in the 70s or 80s...
4. We are also way behind, or perhaps a lost cause, in terms of management. GBR management, while imperfect, is miles ahead of what happens here. Perhaps I will become an eco-warrior. Someone has to drag us out of the Stone Age.
4b. Well, at least Japan and JAMSTEC are miles ahead on deep-sea stuff...
5. Great researchers in Aus, hope to get there again.
6. Dr. Carden Wallace and the Tropical Queensland Museum have a great coral collection. Wow.
7. Dr. Allen Chen and his lab are active, fun, and would be a great place for any of us to go do some workshops or research. We need to think of some great ideas we can work on together.

Today's pic is of a massive humphead wrasse on Wheeler Reef on the GBR.