Monday, August 4, 2014

Hannah Lyons - Week 6

This week it was our turn to visit the other interns at their campus at Oregon Institute of Marine Biology in Charleston just south of Coos Bay. The campus is beautiful and I loved being able to go into the labs and classrooms. In one of the wet labs we were able to hold a Giant California Sea Slug! Another had a lot of specimens in jars from all over the world and some creatures I'd never even heard of from the deep ocean. I especially liked the ornithology lab where they had so many beautiful species of birds to look at. OIMB is very cute and it was nice again to hang with out co-interns. The drive from Newport to Charleston is also very beautiful and we drove by one of my favorite Oregon lighthouses, the Heceta Head lighthouse.
On a personal journey down that way I stopped outside of Reedsport to watch the wild elk that graze near the highway. They were very close and huge! In the photo you can see the males in front and some females and young in the background. I also stopped at the Darlingtonia Wayside outside of Florence to see the carnivorous Cobra Lilies that grow in a small marsh there. Insects are attracted to the plant by sweet smells and nectar and once inside of the hood they struggle against downward growing hairs along the leaf tube. The insects are also confused by the thinner "windows" of the tube and exhaust themselves by banging against what looks to be an opening but is not. Eventually the bugs will fall into a pool of liquid that contains a digestive enzyme and symbiotic bacteria and will be digested by the plant to boost nitrogen levels. Such an interesting plant right here in Oregon!
Bird specimens at OIMB.

Heceta Head Lighthouse at sunset.

Darlingtonia californica (Cobra Lilly)

Elk outside of Reedsport.

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