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The Q? Blog

January Events in Q?rius: Feed Jellyfish, Explore Coastal Ecosystems, and More

by Jasmine Utsey -- Dec 23, 2014
Jasmine Utsey, Learning Program Assistant

Jasmine is a learning program assistant for the Experience Design team in the Museum's Department of Education and Outreach, where she coordinates and...

Archaeologist Torben Rick studies how humans have affected biodiversity over time in California's Channel Islands. He discusses "Coastal and Island Biodiversity - Tracking Human Influences" on Jan. 13. Photo by Torben Rick.
Archaeologist Torben Rick studies how humans have affected biodiversity over time in California's Channel Islands. He discusses "Coastal and Island Biodiversity - Tracking Human Influences" on Jan. 13. Photo by Torben Rick.

We're showcasing a variety of topics to kick off the new year, including fungal spores, baby fish, and jellyfish and their kin. You can also hear archaeologist Torben Rick discuss how humans impact coastal biodiversity and how digging into the past can help us manage ecosystems today. Make a resolution to join us for a January event!

Unless otherwise noted, all events are free and take place in Q?rius, the interactive science learning space on the ground floor of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. New event listings and cancellations are possible, so check the Upcoming Events calendar for the most current information.

Jan. 3 - Expert Is In: Dispersal of Fungal Spores
Can you build a spore optimized for dispersal? Fungi play key roles in our environment as wood decomposers, but how do they get to the places where they grow? Spore specialist Mariya Shcheglovitova will help you discover the unique adaptations of spores! This is a drop-in event. Q?rius, ground floor 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Jan. 4 - Genes in a Bottle
See  your own DNA! Take part in a molecular biology activity and create a necklace pendant made up of your own DNA (from a cheek swab). This is a drop-in event. Q?rius, Barbara and Craig Barrett Lab. Wednesdays from 2-4 p.m. and Sundays from 2-4 p.m. Activity runs about every 20 minutes.
*This activity is not appropriate for children under 7. Children 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult.

Jan. 7 - Expert Is In: Fishy Fluctuations
It’s tough to be a small fish in a big ocean. Join fisheries biologist Megan Stachura and explore how ocean changes affect young fish. Help identify baby fish and take a challenge to improve fisheries management. This is a drop-in event. Q?rius, ground floor, 2-4 p.m.

Jan. 13 - Coastal and Island Biodiversity - Tracking Human Influences, part of the Anthropocene: Life in the Age of Humans Discussion Series
How does studying our past impact our actions of the future? What clues lie in Earth’s history to help guide environmental conservation, restoration, and management efforts today? Archaeologist Dr. Torben Rick looks back over thousands of years to see how humans influenced the West Coast (Channel Islands) and East Coast (Chesapeake Bay). This event is free, but registration requested. Q?rius Theater, 6-7:30 p.m.

Jan. 15 - Live Webcast: Ecosystem Change - Plotting with Plant Collections
Meet Rusty Russell, a Botany Collections Manager at the Museum who manages collections activities in the U.S. National Herbarium, a research collection that contains more than 5 million pressed, dried plant specimens. Learn how plant collections can be used to map ecosystem changes over time. Visit a part of southern California that experienced a dramatic shift in plant species composition during the 20th century. This event is free and can be viewed on the Q?rius website, but registration is requested. 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Jan. 15 - Expert Is In: Histology with Freya Goetz
Histology, the study of microscopic tissue structures, has wide-ranging uses from identifying species to diagnosing cancer. Visit with Freya Goetz, a museum technician who will show you how this skill can be used to study invertebrates like marine worms and leeches. This is a drop-in event. Q?rius, ground floor. 2-4 p.m.

Jan. 19 - Expert Is In: Jellyfish and Their Kin
(New date and time) Come feed members of the “stinging-celled” animal group known as cnidarians, with marine biologists Allen Collins, Cheryl Aimes, and Basti Bentlage, along with intern Matt Snyder. See first-hand what their stinging weapons look like under a microscope and talk with some of the world’s experts on these amazing animals. This is a drop-in event. Q?rius, Barbara and Craig Barrett Lab. 11 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

 

Categories: Q?rius News