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First go to to Bergen for the Cirratulidae mission


    We had visitor researcher Maël Grosse visiting the lab earlier this winter. Right here’s a weblog put up from his keep:

    As a part of my lately began Artsdatabanken mission, I’ve simply accomplished a month lengthy go to right here on the invertebrates collections. It was quite a lot of work, but in addition quite a bit enjoyable. Everybody was very useful, offering me with worms to determine (a actually by no means ending provide!), serving to me with the scanning electron microscope and spending hours discussing worms and taxonomy. 

    My mission goals to review and map the range of a giant household of polychaetes: Cirratulidae. Cirratulids are notoriously tough to determine, having few characters to work with hidden between the mass of tentacles and branchiae they drag round (Fig. 1). They’re fairly widespread and various, however poorly identified, which is what I’m aiming to repair.

    Fig. 1. A SEM (Scanning Electron Microscopy) picture of a Cirratulid made on the ELMI lab in Bergen.  Picture: Katrine Kongshavn

    Bergen Museum has the biggest assortment of polychaetes in Norway, with samples starting from the North Sea to the Arctic waters of Svalbard, and from the intertidal coastal waters to the abyssal depths of the North-East Atlantic. And certainly, hundreds of cirratulid polychaetes had been ready on the cabinets to be recognized. As it’s the surroundings I had been working essentially the most with previously couple of years, for this go to I made a decision to give attention to deep sea species. This led me to verify samples from all around the Norwegian Sea, together with some distinctive and thrilling environments such because the depths of Sognefjord or hydrothermal vents.

    On the finish of the month, over 5500 specimens, belonging to about 23 species have been examined (Fig. 2). Whereas the bulk might be given an title or a species quantity (within the case of as of but unnamed species), many couldn’t be recognized with confidence, as a result of they had been  incomplete specimens or from an space the place a specific species had not been recorded earlier than. There have been even two species I believe I had by no means seen earlier than, which is an excellent end result for the mission! In that case, I chosen specimens for DNA barcoding, which is able to assist confirming their identification. I’ve picked out about 300 specimens for barcoding, so now there may be fairly a bit of labor to do again in my dwelling lab to sequence all of them.

    Fig. 2. Cirratulidae samples at UMB. Picture: Maël Grosse

    So in the long run, I’d say it was very productive go to, and I’ll actually be again for extra worms!

    -Maël Grosse