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Division of Invertebrate Zoology (DIZ) - Spring 2000 Newsletter

Message from the Chair

Rachel Ann Merz

The SICB 2000 meeting in Atlanta was successful, eventful and satisfying. DIZ sponsored and participated in great presentations and symposia. For the first time, the SICB program officers arranged talks by topics rather than by division affiliation. The general sense of participants was that this enriched the experience of the meeting. Although some time conflicts between talks remained (and will probably always be the case), DIZ members reported less disharmony than at previous meetings. Presentation sessions were more integrated and cohesive. Next year, similar organization of poster sessions will be attempted. A question for discussion is whether DIZ, which is among the divisions that are now most widely spread across talk sessions, should invent or preserve some activities that serve to draw invertebrate zoologists together and/or to truly focus on invertebrate zoology. Your comments and suggestions about this are welcome.

Because of careful planning and stewardship, the society has recovered strongly from the financial concerns of a few years ago. As a result, the Executive Committee approved $25,000 as a Program Innovation Fund, primarily for the Chicago meeting. This fund is to be used to underwrite new activities that directly or indirectly increase attendance at the Annual Meeting. Such activities include introducing novel, innovative events or by bringing people to the meeting who will attract other participants with a goal towards promoting future attendance at our meetings. Regular funding for symposia will continue in addition to these new funds. If you have ideas or questions about projects that would be appropriate candidates for this purpose, please contact our Program Officer Larry McEdward.

The DIZ business meeting was well attended by an enthusiastic (some might say boisterous) membership. This might be because the program suggested that this was a DIZ social - implying a supply of refreshments that were not in evidence or perhaps that invertebrate zoologists are particularly spirited. In any case, Daphne Fautin ably presided over her last meeting as DIZ president. The minutes of the meeting are found elsewhere in this newsletter. The meeting largely centered on the members' reactions to current and proposed changes in how SICB communicates with its membership (e.g. electronic vs. paper), the process and timing of abstract submittal and the form and availability of the abstract volume. You will have opportunities to make your own opinions on these topics know via surveys that will be distributed by SICB and the divisions. Additional business included Larry McEdward taking over the mantle of program officer from Damhnait McHugh. The membership expressed their great appreciation to Daphne and Damhnait for their extraordinary service to the division. Susie Balser, secretary of the division, is serving her last year in that position. Diane Padilla graciously agreed to chair the Nominating Committee (including Sara Lindsay and William Zamer), which is responsible for presenting candidates for the office of secretary. Please vote.

Graduate and undergraduate students were well represented in the paper and poster sessions and Clay Cook and his committee of judges had a challenging time deciding to whom to award prizes. Congratulations go to Spencer Nyholm, Sheila Patek, Matt McHenry and Barbara Musolf for their wonderful presentations! Special thanks to all who served as judges and to Clay for organizing such a smooth-running competition.

Message from the Secretary

Susie Balser

This spring DIZ will be electing a new secretary to assume office at the end of the Annual Meeting in Chicago. We have two very able candidates in Drs. Will Jaeckle and Amy Moran. Biographies of these candidates appear in this newsletter. Notification of the election and ballots will be sent to your via regular mail. Paper ballots sent via regular mail are available upon request. Members are encouraged to vote.

Message from the Program Officer

Larry McEdward

This year is off to a great start with a successful and productive meeting in Atlanta. Now it is time to evaluate some of the changes that have taken place in the organization of the meeting program. No doubt, everyone has an opinion about the usefulness of electronic abstract transmittal, topical (rather than divisional) organization of contributed paper sessions, Web-based meeting and hotel registration/reservations and the availability of the program on the Web. Some of these changes, such as greater use of electronic transmission of information, are part of an inevitable shift in the operations of the society driven by economics and organizational efficiency. However, in the end, the response of the membership determines the success or failure of how these changes are implemented. Your comments and suggestions are essential in order for the society's officers to make informed choices and correct mistakes. Let me know what you think, preferably via e-mail (well, now you know where I stand on one of these issues), and I will make sure that the concerns of our division are voiced during the planning for future meetings.

DIZ encompasses the broadest, most diverse, and possibly the least well-defined interests within SICB. Given the changes that are taking place in the society, it seems like a good time to think about the current state of our division. The reorganization of the meetings has the potential for a very strong impact on DIZ members. Assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the division will help ensure that changes lead to improvement and new opportunities without jeopardizing that which members value. This is a topic that will be developed more fully in the next newsletter, but just to start us thinking ...Why are you affiliated with DIZ? Is it your primary divisional affiliation? Why, or why not? What is it about the division that is attractive or useful to you? Does DIZ reflect and promote the things about the field of invertebrate zoology that you value? What divisional activities would do so?

In spite of the attention that recent changes have attracted, many aspects of our society and the Annual Meeting have not changed. One of these is the importance of quality symposia. One of my primary responsibilities is to encourage DIZ sponsored or co-sponsored symposia. Program officers evaluate and select among competing proposals, but much more importantly, we assist with the development of the proposals, requests for funding and incorporation of the symposia into the program. Don't hesitate to bring your ideas to my attention long before you have a formal proposal ready to submit Information about preparing symposium proposals can be obtained by contacting the appropriate divisional program officer.

Best Student Paper Awards

Clay Cook

The DIZ Best Student Paper/Poster Competition at the 2000 Annual Meeting in Atlanta had 22 entries, consisting of eight posters and 14 oral presentations. The 2000 Best Student Poster Award went to Barbara Musolf of Georgia State University in Atlanta, for her poster entitled "Regulation of 5-hydroxytryptamine uptake in crayfish." A second prize was not awarded in the poster category.

For the second year in a row, there was a tie for first place among the oral presentations. The co-winners were Sheila Patek of Duke University, whose paper was entitled "Stick and slip: A novel mechanism of sound production in spiny lobsters (Palinuridae)" and Spencer Nyholm of the University of Hawaii/Kewalo Marine Laboratory, who spoke on "Harvesting of symbiotic bacteria during colonization of the light organ of Euprymna scolopes." A second prize in the oral presentation category was not awarded this year.

In addition to a certificate of award, first place is awarded (in each poster and paper competition) free memberships for a year in SICB and American Microscopical Society (AMS), a gift certificate for $50 worth of books from a publisher and $100 cash. The AMS membership includes a subscription to Invertebrate Biology. Second place winners receive a year's membership in SICB and AMS.

The Adrian Wenner Strong Inference Award of $100 was made to Matt McHenry, from the University of California, Berkeley. The subject of Matt's presentation was "Mechanisms for helical swimming: Asymmetries in the morphology, mechanics, and movement of ascidian tadpole larvae (Distaplia occidentalis)." Congratulations to our four winners for their fine work!

Thanks for all the hard work also goes to this year's judges: Sue Cook, Bruce Conn, Ron Dimock, Daphne Fautin, Steve Gardiner, Will Jaeckle, Steve Kempf, Bill Kier, Rachel Merz, Don Munson, Vicki Pearse, Bruno Pernet, Hank Trapido-Rosenthal and Janice Voltzow. DIZ acknowledges and thanks John Wiley and Sons and Oxford University Press for their sponsorship of the Best Student Presentation Awards.

Libbie H. Hyman Memorial Scholarship

Gordon Hendler

This scholarship, in memory of Libbie H. Hyman, one of America's foremost invertebrate zoologists, provides assistance to students to take courses OR to carry on research on invertebrates at a marine, freshwater or terrestrial field station. This year's deadline for proposals has past. To obtain scholarship information and applications for next year, contact Gordon Hendler hendler@nhm.org.


This year, the chair of the Libbie H. Hyman Scholarship Committee made a $100 contribution toward the scholarship at the time he renewed his SICB membership. Thus, in good conscience he asks most earnestly (and righteously!) for all DIZ members to contribute what they can. Contributions may be sent to: SICB Business Office, Libbie H. Hyman Memorial Scholarship Fund, 1313 Dolley Madison Blvd. #402, McLean, VA 22101-3926. Checks should be made payable to SICB and marked as a "Contribution to the Libbie H. Hyman Memorial Scholarship Fund."

Currently, only one Libbie H. Hyman scholarship can be awarded each year. Contributions to increase the principal of the scholarship fund will enable us to award a PAIR of annual scholarships to worthy graduate and undergraduate students.

Research Opportunities and Summer Programs

Smithsonian Marine Station (http://www.sms.si.edu/)

Each year, the Smithsonian Marine Station promotes the education of emerging scientists by offering one or more research fellowships. The Marine Station hosts graduate, predoctoral, postdoctoral and senior postdoctoral fellows.

American Museum of Natural History Fellowships and Grants Fellowships

Research fellowships are available to postdoctoral researchers and established scholars starting in summer and fall 2000. The fellowships support independent research in association with the resident staff. Areas include vertebrate and invertebrate zoology, paleozoology, anthropology, earth and planetary sciences and astronomy.

Research grants are available to advanced predoctoral candidates and recent postdoctoral researchers in the fields of zoology and paleontology. Awards average $1,400. Grant programs include:

Frank M. Chapman - Ornithology

Theodore Roosevelt - North American Fauna

Lerner-Gray - Marine Zoology

Request information and application forms from: Ruben Navarro, Office of Grants and Fellowships, The American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th Street

New York, NY 10024, Tel: 212/769-5017, Fax: 212/769-5495, E-mail: rnavarro@amnh.org

Undergraduate internships and summer courses available at the Darling Marine Center


Oregon Institute of Marine Biology


Hopkins Marine Station


Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory


Shoals Marine Laboratory


Special Report on Increasing Involvement of Underrepresented People in the SICB

Dianna Padilla

At our Annual Meeting in Denver, the Executive Committee voted unanimously to support the development of a program to increase involvement of minorities in the SICB. Although our society is very scientifically diverse, its membership is considerably less diverse. In many cases, this lack of diversity reflects a lack of diversity in specific areas of science in general. In the not too distant past, similar observations were made regarding the number of women in our society. Today, women are not only abundant as members, they also hold prominent positions among the leadership of our society.

On January 9, 2000, a small group including members of SICB, administrators from minority colleges and universities, an undergraduate and graduate student and two scientists from NSF met in Atlanta for a workshop to discuss and develop a plan that would increase the involvement of minorities in SICB and in the scientific disciplines covered by our various divisions. Many national scientific organizations have been very active in this area in the recent past, and many members of SICB have been involved in these programs, particularly for the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography and the Ecological Society of America. The purpose of this workshop was to promote discussion and feedback from different perspectives about what our society could and should do.

The results of the workshop were a series of recommendations for the society, including starting with our meeting next year in Chicago. The intent is to target local scientists and institutions that train minority students for special invitations to attend the meeting. Other recommendations were to identify key minority scientists and scientists at institutions that enroll high numbers of underrepresented students and encourage them to join (or rejoin) the society and facilitate their bringing students to meetings. Contact and collaborations with national scientific and honor societies for minority students and scientists were also recommended. The workshop had other specific recommendations and suggested that there should be a complete program in place for the Anaheim meeting.

A full report and recommendations will be given to the Executive Committee for action. Implementation and success of any program will ultimately depend on the enthusiasm of the membership of SICB. The society is now poised to take advantage of its new financial well being and forge in important new directions. The president has asked for opinions from the membership on what the important goals and directions for the society should be. If you feel that increasing the diversity of SICB and science is an important goal for the society, I encourage you to tell the president and the Executive Committee.


Department of Ecology and Evolution

SUNY, Stony Brook, NY

Minutes of the DIZ Divisional Meeting

Daphne Fautin, chair of the DIZ, directed the annual business meeting on January 5, 2000 in Atlanta. After welcoming the membership, she introduced Chair-Elect Rachel Merz and the Program Officer-Elect Larry McEdward--both of whom took office at the end of the meeting. The minutes of the 1999 business meeting in Denver were approved as they appear in the spring 1999 newsletter.

Shortly after the meeting began, Martin Feder, president of SICB, made a guest appearance to ask the members their opinions about changes in the society. One recent and significant on-going change is the move towards electronic communications including the Web site, e-mail and publication of meeting abstracts. Future endeavors along these lines include a shift to an electronic American Zoologists with the possible elimination of paper copies of the meeting booklet and journal. As brought to our attention by Sally Woodin, if the abstracts are posted electronically, the abstract deadline might be later in the year. Larry McEdward and John Pearse, SICB program officer, indicated that a radical departure from current abstract deadline is not likely to occur. Sara Lindsay stated that even with the current deadline and electronic abstract registration, abstracts were not available online until the end of November 1999. Feder reiterated the potential savings of electronic abstracts and the elimination of the printed meeting booklet. He stated the American Zoologist abstract volume cost $21,000 for 1,200 copies--a cost of approximately $25-30 per person. Feder stated that elimination of this volume (with the exception of archival copies) would result in a lower meeting registration fee. This saving is further enhanced by the elimination of the abstract fee. Feder conducted a straw vote that asked the following questions: Do members want printed or electronic meeting booklet? (a majority voted for electronic); Should abstracts be published? (a majority voted that they be published, but a cheaper version is acceptable); If abstracts are published, should advanced copies be provided? (50 percent voted yes). Feder was concerned that electronic formats might disenfranchise some members. Woodin responded by suggesting the both paper and electronic versions be available.

Feder also raised questions concerning the desire and degree to which SICB should encourage microbiologists and plant biologists to interface with the society and participate in the Annual Meetings.

Daphne Fautin reported that in addition to the above changes, SICB has employed a new management company, Burk and Associates Inc., a firm based in Washington D.C. that specializes in biological science associations. Although Smith, Bucklin & Associates, Inc., the SICB management company for the last eight years, has done a remarkable job, BAI is fiscally attractive and does specialize in scientific organizations. Fautin also reported that the SICB budget is operating well into the black and that a substantial profit was realized in 1999 by the society.

The SICB Executive Committee is looking for ways to make the Annual Meetings more exciting and to promote stimulating workshops and speakers. John Pearse, SICB program officer, asked that DIZ members contact him as early as possible with ideas.

Secretary's Report

Susie Balser reminded members to offer contributions to the newsletter and specifically called for volunteers to contribute to the Great Invertebrate Zoologist series. Possible changes in the bylaws concerning electronic voting were discussed. Amendments in the bylaws concerning the Best Student Presentation and the Adrian Wenner Awards that appeared in the spring 1999 newsletter were approved with the removal of the word "graduate" before "student" throughout the document. Election of a new secretary to take office at the end of the Chicago meeting will occur this spring. Members were asked to volunteer to serve on the selection committee or to run for the position.

Program Officer's Report--Past and Present

In Damhnait McHugh's absence, Daphne Fautin read the program officer's report. At this year's meeting, DIZ was represented by 33 posters and 36 oral presentations, as well as participation in several symposia. Thanks were extended to Clay Cook and Penny Barnes for their noteworthy organization of the Best Student Presentation Awards. John Pearse interjected that feedback is very positive for the organization of contributed papers by topic and asks if DIZ wants to consider this for poster sessions for the 2001 meeting in Chicago.

New Program Officer Larry McEdward reminded members to register for symposia for future meetings. He stated that currently DIZ has 12 proposed symposia for Chicago. McEdward reported that there was a pool of $25,000 from SICB for which divisions could compete and members were asked to think about ideas concerning how to use this money.

Best Student Presentation Awards 1999

The first place poster award went to Jan Locke of the Bermuda Biological Station for Research, Inc. and the University of Toronto for "A statocyst within the Clitellata." A second place poster award was not given. Erika Iyengar of Cornell University and Daniel McCarthy of Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution and Kings College London tied for first place in the oral presentation competition. Iyengar presented a stealthy talk on "Incidence and importance of kleptoparasitism to the marine snail Trichotropis cancellata." McCarthy provided a sound foundation on"Intertidal and subtidal larval recruitment of the reef-building polychaete Phragmatopoma lapidosa." Congratulations were given to all three winners.

Libbie Hyman Memorial Scholarship 1999

The 1999 Scholarship Award was given to Dian-Han Kuo, University of Texas at Austin who used the funds to take two summer courses at the Friday Harbor Laboratories. Members are asked to continue to donate funds to the scholarship. Currently, 25 percent of the interest earned from the capital is reinvested. Although this builds the fund for the future, it reduces the amount available for awards. Gordon Hendler's on-going goal is to provide two full awards every year--one each for a graduate and an undergraduate student.

Other Items

Rick Harrison pointed out that the closing of the exhibitor stations at 6 p.m. is prior to the ending of the poster sessions and that this decreases the interactions between members and exhibitors. Possible suggestions to remedy this problem were to alter the times of either or both events or have the exhibitors remain open later. Members at the meeting were divided between wanting to move the poster session to the afternoons and keeping them in the evening with the intent of fostering a more relaxed atmosphere for discussion.

Flo Thomas, Dianna Padilla and Sally Woodin called for a vote to determine if DIZ members were interested in developing programs to encourage participation of underrepresented people in SICB. A workshop on this topic, funded by NSF, was announced for January 6, 2000. Members were encouraged to relay their ideas to Dianna, Flo or Sally Woodin. Clay Cook stated that ASLO has been participating in such programs for years and enthusiastically supported the efforts of the people heading the workshop. A report of the results of the workshop appear elsewhere in this newsletter.

Rick Harrison thanked the 1999 reviewers for the Journal of Morphology and suggested that they receive a complimentary subscription. Harrison also stated that Microscopic Anatomy of Invertebrates is available to American Microscopical Society (AMS) members at 40 percent discount. Mary Rice, president of AMS, encouraged people at the meeting to take advantage of a special deal of $99 for three years of AMS membership. Membership includes a subscription to the journal Invertebrate Biology.

Clay Cook asked the DIZ membership if they were interested in obtaining and developing METAZOA, a compact disc presentation designed and developed by the late Kerry Clark to augment invertebrate zoology courses. Questions were raised about who would own the rights to the program and who would administer its further development. Clay was charged with providing more information and a report on this topic appears in this newsletter.

The virtual gavel was passed to the new DIZ chair, Rachel Merz, with thanks to Daphne Fautin for her inspired leadership of the past three years. The meeting was adjourned to the DIZ social.

METAZOA--An Opportunity to Become Involved

The late Kerry Clark developed a compact disk entitled METAZOA to be an adjunct to college invertebrate zoology courses. Kerry's family is eager for this project to be continued. At the DIZ business meeting in Atlanta, it was proposed that this be a divisional project. The dream of endowing a second summer fellowship could be hastened if some of the proceeds from the sale of METAZOA were returned to the division.

To make this project a reality, or even to determine if it is feasible, a person must be willing to take responsibility for it. Nobody at the meeting volunteered to assume the responsibility. We now have someone who would be willing to deal with the science side but lacks the requisite technical expertise. If you have such expertise and this project appeals to you, please contact Daphne Fautin (fautin@ukans.edu) or Clay Cook (ccook@HBOI.edu).


Candidates for DIZ Secretary

Will Jaeckle

Current position: Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, Illinois.

Education: B.A. (Zoology) 1981 Humboldt State University; Ph.D. (Biology) 1989 University of Southern California.

Professional experience: Postdoctoral Fellowships: Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution; Smithsonian Institution; Friday Harbor Laboratories, University of Washington. Visiting Instructor: University of Washington; University of Oregon. Visiting Professor: Illinois Wesleyan University, 1996-present.

SICB participation: Member and presenter at Annual Meetings since 1983; Student presentation judge for both DIZ and DEE.

Other memberships: American Microscopical Society, Western Society of Naturalists, Sigma Xi.

Research interests: Function morphology of invertebrate larvae, energetics of development, larval ecology, asexual reproduction by larvae of asteroid echinoderms.

Statement of goals: The secretary's principal responsibility involves the assembly of the division's contribution to the biannual newsletter and participation in DIZ, SICB and secretary annual business meetings. In addition, in the capacity of secretary, I hope to serve the membership by assisting in the flow of information to and from the SICB and DIZ throughout the year. One of my primary goals is to increase the efficiency of communication between members while ensuring that the means to this is as user friendly as possible. Through this office, I hope to gain a better understanding and appreciation of the administration of both the division and the society.

Amy L. Moran

Current position: Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Washington and Friday Harbor Laboratories, Friday Harbor, 1998 – present.

Education: B.A., Biology, Music, Bates College, Lewiston, ME, 1990; Ph.D., Biology, University of Oregon, Eugene, 1997.

Professional experience: Postdoctoral Fellow, Friday Harbor Laboratories, 1998 – present; STRI Postdoctoral Fellow, fall 1998; Visiting Instructor of Invertebrate Zoology, University of Oregon and Oregon Institute of Marine Biology, spring 1999.

SICB activities: Member and presenter at Annual Meetings since 1993; Best Student Paper judge, 1999.

Other memberships: Ecological Society of America, Western Society of Naturalists, American Malacological Society, Phi Beta Kappa.

Research interests: Larval ecology and the physiology, functional morphology, reproductive ecology and evolution of marine invertebrates. Evolution of reproductive modes, behavior and reproductive ecology of gastropods and egg size evolution in tropical marine bivalves.

Goals statement: SICB provides excellent support for students and scientists early in their careers. I would like to advance student and postdoctoral involvement in DIZ and to promote social and professional interactions between beginning and established scientists within the division. I will also work to ensure that students, postdocs and others with limited funding are not kept from attendance at the Annual Meeting by increasing registration and travel costs. Finally, I am glad to see the increasing number of talks at the Annual Meeting that take advantage of the computer capabilities now available. SICB provides guidance to attendees regarding oral and poster presentations, and I would like to continue this tradition by working to develop a set of guidelines to promote and smooth the transition to computer-enhanced presentations.


DIZ Chair-Elect
Rachel Ann Merz
Department of Biology
Swarthmore College
Swarthmore, PA 19081
telephone: 610/328-8051
Fax: 610.328-8663

Past Chair
Daphne G. Fautin
Professor, Biological Sciences
Curator, Natural History Museum and Biodiversity Research Center
Haworth Hall
University of Kansas
Lawrence, KS 66045
Fax: 785/864-5321

DIZ Program Officer
Larry McEdward
Associate Professor of Zoology
Department of Zoology,
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL
Fax: 352/392-3704

DIZ Secretary
Susie Balser
Assistant Professor
Department of Biology
Illinois Wesleyan University
Bloomington, IL 61702-2900
Fax: 309/556-3864

Libbie H. Hyman Scholarship Committee, Chair
Gordon Hendler
Curator of Echinoderms
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
900 Exposition Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90007
Fax: 213/746-2999
hendler@nhm.org OR hendler@bcf.usc.edu

Graduate Student/Postdoctoral Affairs Committee Representative
Shea Tuberty
Crustacean Endocrinology
Research Associate
University of West Florida
Center for Environmental Diagnostics and Bioremediation (CEBD)
Science Training in Ecology Program (STEP)
Pensacola, FL 32514-5754