Fresh Bio News!

Here’s some new news from the realm of Biology!


Bacteria using Far-Red-Light to Photosynthesize


New Evidence of Sympatric Evolution (A new species evolving inside of an existing population with no geographic barriers)


Animals may have more Language Structure than previously thought


Jurassic Mammals may have been picky eaters


Organisim of the Day: The Barreleye Fish!

Behold, the Barreleye Fish (Macropinna microstoma)!

Well, that’s a strange fish… it’s almost like its head is…HOLY CRAP IT HAS A SEE-THROUGH FACE!!!! It has those sad little eyes, a pouty-lookin’ mouth and weird, greenish…brain lobes? Not quite. M. microstoma (a.k.a. “spookfish”), as other worldly as they seem, actually come from a place much closer than the alien planet you might suspect. It lives in the deep waters off the central coast of California, about 2,000 to 2,600 feet (600-800m) below the watery surface. To even see one alive requires a submersible, as they don’t survive long once removed from their native habitat. The image above was taken by an ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute in 2009. That’s fairly recent, and we’ve only been aware of the existence of this species since 1939. Its “face” is composed of a transparent dome (apparently rather delicate) filled with some fluid. Now, the transparent head is odd, but not super weird or mind blowing. But why would it need that see-through dome in the first place? It doesn’t need to see out of it or anything, its eyes are at the front. Aaaaaaaaaaaannd this is where it gets weird.


So WHAT THE F@$% IS THAT!!!! Those are barreleyes. Eyes. In the shape. Of a barrel. Those things that you probably thought were eyes? Smelling organs called nares. Although not the only barreleye fish (family Opisthoproctidae), this is first we’ve seen in it’s natural habitat. It looks straight up to look for food (with it’s body horizontal), and then rotates its eyes forward as it turns its body upward to swim for the food source. So what do these guys eat? While we haven’t fully observed its eating habits, researchers hypothesize that it finds some siphonophores (jellyfish relatives), and steals food straight from their tentacles. Actually, that’s kind of badass. You can see a short clip of some Barreleye Fish here.

Note: I don’t own these images

Time and Place Finalized for Meetings!

Hi everyone! after reviewing all of the surveys, the hours I proposed will be the actual hours. So, 4pm to 5:30pm Tuesday and Thursday, in the library’s upstairs, in the Testing and Tutoring Center, room 3 (the big one). Thanks to everyone who filled out the survey, it was really helpful! And if you can’t make it at those hours, remember, there is this website! I wish everyone the best of luck this semester. I’m rootin’ for you guys!

-The SI


P.S. I will restart my Organism of the Day series, as well as Fresh Bio News, starting today.

Sincerest Apologies

Hi Everyone,

I was about 10 minutes away from posting a complete test. I decided that I would add an essay page, but when I tried to add another section, the whole file turned into multiple languages and gibberish, wouldn’t respond, and now refuses to open. The chances of me having time to create a new one are desperately slim. I am terribly sorry to say that you most likely will not have a personalized test. In light of this, I would point out that 2 practice exams currently up on this site possess the questions from the material you are studying: Practice Exam 2 and 3. All questions are pertinent on 2, and questions 1-20 are applicable on 3. Their Answer Keys are also online. Also, Burns has her own practice test, accessible via her website. This must be how it feels like to be the cliche cop on TV shows who’s one day away from retirement and then has something terrible happen. In the event I can get it online, I will alert you, but this is very slim. I am truly and utterly sorry to everyone.

Practice Exam 1 is UP!

The new Practice Exam 1 and it’s answer key are up! It is under the Documents Page, and labeled for Spring 2014. To get the full preparation, try out last semester’s practice test 1 (the difference isn’t drastic, and should be quite helpful), and Burn’s Practice Test 1. Best of Luck to you all! Contact me if you have any Questions!

-The SI

So it begins!

Hi everyone!  The semester has finally begun, and I figured it would be a good idea to give a brief overview of this site. This is where you can come anytime and ask me questions about bio. Maybe you can’t make it to SI, or maybe you have a question that needs to be answered, like, within a day, because you have a test tomorrow and you’re trying to cram at 3am on 5 cups of coffee that are straight up injected into you from an IV. Well, that’s what the site’s for (Please note: the SI’s advice is to NOT cram at 3am in the morning with 5 cups of coffee. Nothing good can come of it, I promise.). All you have to do is comment under the Questions section. It’s that easy! If you need some practice tests, those will be put here, along with answer keys (which hopefully soon will include Burns’ practice test answer keys as well). I have a section titled “Visuals” that I’m working on expanding this year. It should prove useful in the coming months. Finally, sometimes you just can’t learn a subject from someone very well, for whatever reason. Everyone has someone they just don’t get, maybe due to the way they teach, or the fact that you hate them from 5th grade when they totally stole your Gogurt, or because they refuse to stop teaching in Sindarin Elfish. If so, there are links on this site that I’ve found to be pretty helpful from good bio sources.

Every so often I post about interesting organisms and fresh biology news, so check back here and who knows, maybe you’ll find something new! I also post some funny bio-related images, because everyone needs a laugh once in a while. The First SI session is this Thursday, so I hope to see you there! Remember, it’s 1-4pm, Thursdays (every week but holidays) in the Testing and Tutoring Center upstairs in the Library. I hope this turns out to be a great semester, and I wish everyone the best of Luck! I’m rootin’ for ya!

- The SI

Burns’ Practice Final now has an answer key!

The Documents Section now has an Answer Key to her Practice Final. Good Luck!

The Practice Final is Fresh off the Press!!!!!!

Just finished not 1 and a half minutes ago. The Practice Final and it’s Answer Key are in the Documents Section. Good Luck!

Ooops!!! Bacteria/Archaea questions added

Sorry, forgot about that section being on the test! A tiny add on (5 questions) is now on the website.

Practice Test 4 is Up!

Hey Guys! It’s a busy time, but I got Practice Test #4 and it’s corresponding Answer Key up and running in the Documents page. SO, this Tuesday, my hours are 2:30 to 5:30pm, so you guys can ask questions (If you can’t make it, you can ask online in the “Questions” page). On Thursday, the final SI day, I will have a Practice Final and Question Session, from 2:00 to 6:00pm. I will have pizza brought up to fuel people, and coffee or tea if I can manage. That test will also be online under “Documents” It’s been an honor being your SI these past few months, and I wish you all the best of luck in whatever majors you’re pursuing. I hope that for those who needed help, I managed to improve your understanding of Biology. Finally, I hope that you’re Final goes awesomely, and remember, I’m rootin’ for you guys!

                                                                                                                                                                                                           -Aaron Glover, The SI


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