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Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

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September 21, 2023

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BG24 Newscast
September 21, 2023

Marine biology lab home to different species of fish, open to public for weekly tours

The University is the only school with a Marine Biology program in Ohio and one of the only schools in the Midwest with a lab accessible to students on campus.

Justin Grubb, head coordinator of the Marine Biology Lab, said this is the main reason why he came to the University.

“We have students from all around the country that came here for the lab,” Grubb said. “The lab here gives students the unique opportunity to work with aquaria that most labs don’t let you have.”

The lab is located on the second floor of the Life Sciences Building.

He said other schools he visited didn’t give students freedom to do what they wanted to in the lab; it was controlled by what the professor wanted them to do. The animals were another reason he decided to study here.

The main purpose of the lab is for educational purposes, said Matthew Partin, faculty director of the Marine Lab.

There are a variety of animals that anyone can go see in the lab.

“Some of the animals come from breeders, some are donated, some we get from other aquariums and some we buy from pet stores,” Partin said.

There is a moray eel, an archerfish, an anglerfish and two white-spotted bamboo sharks to name a few.

“We have a little over 5,000 gallons of water in the entire lab, but it can vary when doing water changes,” Grubb said.

There isn’t much trouble getting animals unless they are larger in size, Grubb said. The little animals can be ordered online and sent through the mail.

“The lab also gives tours every Thursday and has a class called Bio Lab Tours that is a whole class devoted to giving tours,” said Grubb. “Every Thursday we have some group of students that come and they start off downstairs in the herpetology lab handling those animals and then they come up the marine lab.”

Sophomore Lacie Dean visited the lab last fall semester for her Life in the Sea class.

“I thought it was very interesting and a good tool that we have as a University to teach us about marine life as close to real life as possible,” Dean said.

Dean said even though she was required to go for a class that she would encourage other people to go for the experience because it was entertaining.

“The people giving the tour made it easier to write our paper about the fish we chose because they were so enthusiastic and passionate about the animals,” Dean said.

Dean said she liked being able to be so close to the fish and also liked that people were given the opportunity to touch some of the animals.

Children are also allowed in the lab whether they are with their schools or just visiting.

Sibs N’ Kids weekend is usually the busiest time for the lab because of all the little children that come visit, Grubb said.

“What are you going to do with your little kid? Bring them to the marine lab to see fish,” Grubb said. “We get a lot of traffic. I think we get about 2,000 visitors in a year just from groups that we can quantify.”

The lab is open Monday through Friday roughly 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“The lab gives people a place to belong,” Partin said. “Biology students feel like they have a sense of ownership. It is somewhere they can go to hang out, do their homework and take classes. It is a big social network.”

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