Last week, BOSCORF hosted a workshop for the Micropalaeontological Society's AGM, that was being held at the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton.
The Micropalaeontological Society (TMS) exists “to advance the education of the public in the study of Micropalaeontology” and is operated “exclusively for scientific and educational purposes and not for profit”. The Society comprises five specialist groups that study Foraminifera, Nannofossils, Ostracods, Palynology, and Silicofossils. The groups hold separate meetings, including field trips, throughout the year; these are becoming progressively more international in their scope. The Society holds its Annual Conference in November each year.
As part of the AGM, BOSCORF were asked to hold a workshop offering an introduction to a wide range of sedimentary environments. The workshop was specifically designed by BOSCORF staff for PhD students or micropalaeontologists with limited experiene of working with marine sediment cores. It provided beginners with the opportunity to get hands-on training on how to visually log sediment cores whilst inviting other more experienced conference attendees to participate in more advanced core analysis and interpretation.
The workshop had a specific focus on recognising and describing features with sediment cores from deep-sea environments. Discussions and activities centred around exploring composition of particulate material (detrital mineral grains, biogenic debris and transported clasts), presence of sedimentary structures and the relationships with microfossil content. Attendees got right into some descriptive core logging, creating smear slides and SEM stubs. There were some fantastic discussions about how first principles may inform later analyses using the non-destructive analytical facilities at BOSCORF, and ultimately how the microfossil record might be affected by the sedimentary processes observed.
We would like to thank the TMS committee. Particulary, Dr Alexandra Auderset for organising the event at NOC and for providing such amazing vegan cakes! We hope we can provide similar workshops to the society in future.