Getting crafty for Science! From paddling pools to pleather harnesses, all in a day’s work!

I am often asked where I find equipment for my research, (obviously sunfish harnesses can be tricky to buy off the peg)… and so this blog is all about sourcing strange bits of kit! Please dive in and feel free to laugh a lot at the awkward places I end up, all in the name of science!

A common strategy for many scientists is to make your own/adapt/invent things to fit your fieldwork and although this may seem a bit Blue Peter “here’s a floating, lightweight holding net I made earlier”, it saves a lot of money and time in the long run!

A “how to” make a floating net (including demo ‘fish’ capture in last photo…)

So to start the blog for 2017, here is the official Weird Kit List! The top 3 things I have bought or made in the name of field work (so far…)

   At number 3: The beef jerky maker/high tech stable isotope dryer!

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The state-of-the-art isotope lab in action (in my b&b room *phew!)

At number 2: The suspicious hand pump/chlorophyll extraction device!

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The hand pump in action on the beach filtering liters of seawater in double quick time!

And at No. 1: The pleather lovers’ dream/sunfish-harness-making material!

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Customised sunfish belts for all!

So as you can see, it’s well worth being a bit inventive (and having a sense of humor) when working in the biological sciences!!

Here’s to another year of invention & adventure and wishing you all a wonderful 2017!

As always if you see a dead sunfish which we could take samples from or just fancy a chat about fish/PhD life/getting crafty for science please get in touch! 🙂

Email: nphillips01@qub.ac.uk

Twitter: @SunfishResearch

Instagram: @SunfishResearch

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