Email subscription via Feedburner

Feedburner provides an email subscription feed derived from the RSS of this site – its a day late but excellent for an infrequently updated site like this one. Especially since many of the “crew” are not RSS-users. The blog is so quiet that even I forget it exists sometimes, But when a post does appear, it does offer some light relief from an otherwise stressful INBOX!

Of course first you have to know it exists. One of the honours students just discovered its existence when he heard about the use of Duc’s comment in a STOMP post. His rather confused look (about the presence of this blog) led to this note:

How to sign up for the NUS Biodiversity Crew email newsletter.

  1. First visit The Biodiversity crew @ NUS at
  2. The follow the three steps below.
  3. You will receive an immediate email requesting confirmation of your subscription. Check your spam or junk folder if you do not see anything in your INBOX. Click reply and send that off and you’re done.


Navjot Sodhi alive and well in Harvard

Checking in our boy in Harvard is Brandon Seah, now an undergraduate there who waylayed Navjot Sodhi after a seminar he gave to the biology people there.

As Brandon says, “He seems happy.”

Of course he delivered his talk with trademark reality (or doom and gloom). Brandon says “his talk was pretty depressing, about ‘Southeast Asian Biodiversity in Crisis’.”

P.s. Janice and company are supposed to post and update too from their not so recent trip but the cows haven’t come home yet so we’ll have to wait a bit more.

Duc debugs!

I stumbled across this last week – Duc shed some light about some hemipterans that were budding a STOMP reader. Hop over and read the entry.

Duc worked on water insects for his PhD thesis entitled, “Taxonomy of the water
strider family Gerridae (Heteroptera: Gerromorpha) of Vietnam, with a
phylogenetic study of the subfamily Eotrechinae.” He submitted his thesis already and completed his oral exam in July.

Rudolf Meier on teaching evolution

Evolution: Teaching the Controversy,” by Rudolf Meier. CDTLink, 12(1).

I was initially unaware of the widespread skepticism among NUS students towards evolution and only realised late in my first semester in Singapore, during Academic Year 2002/2003, that Scott and Branch’s approach [should not be covered as it fails several criteria] does not work as students end up being detached from the subject.

For them, the burning question is finding out why evolution should be preferred over ‘intelligent design’ and not whether a particular model, for example, offers the best explanation for sexual selection. As such, ignoring the controversy is not an option.

To deal with these challenges , I adopt a constructivist’s approach to teach evolution (Scott & Branch, 2003). This approach uses the debate to illustrate how Science uses evidence to select from among competing hypotheses.

Interns with Marine Biology Lab bag top prize in blogging contest

Karenne Tun from the Marine Biology Lab just emailed some happy news – the two interns supervised by Prof Chou, Karenne Tun and Angie Seow from the NUS High School of Mathematics and Science just bagged the top spot in the tertiary category of Underwater World’s “Young Marine Biologist” Competition.

Tsai Tse Yin and Theophilus Teo setup a blog called “Reef to Fight Another Day” and Karenne says they blogged well with entertaining and informative posts!

Well done Jacque and Theophilus!

The other entries are featured at the Underwater World webpage.