The last forum at the International Biogeography Society meeting discussed how biogeographer’s might increase public outreach. Unfortunately little attention was given to what I feel is one of the most effective mechanisms, blogging. The forum really discussed more traditional processes such as press releases, museum exhibits, and popular science writing.

So to my other SB’lings and to you, I propose a challenge. First, can you without a
Google search define what the field of biogeography is. Second, as a voice for our audience, what do you think is the most effective mechanism for outreach.

Dr. M (1801 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (, a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

7 Replies to “Biogeography”

  1. It’s ecology (the study of species distributions in space and time) on a global scale.

    The most effective outreach mechanism? An invasive species like the snakehead fish or the killer bee.

  2. biogeography – the patterns of the geographic distribution of biodiversity – where organisms are, where they ain’t, and who lives with (or without) whom

    I think you are right about using the blogosphere for public outreach – the internet is by far the manner in which most of us now go looking for infomation – print is quickly taking a backseat (already did?)

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