Teacher for a Day

Some kids want to be principal for a day at school. Not Jonathan Reid! Jonathan got to be a science teacher instead. Recently, Jonathan taught all six of the 7th grade science classes at Talmadge Middle School in Independence, Oregon about mollusks, and had a large show-and-tell area after each session.

Jonathan’s ‘show & tell’ set-up at Talmadge Middle School.

Shell club member, Jonathan Reid (center/standing) teaching a class on shells to his middle school classmates in Independence, Oregon.

Show & Tell Painting/Shell Craft

During "show & tell’ at the March 5 Oregon shell club meeting club member and artist, Kelly Timm, described the steps he followed in the development of a beautiful painting of an Hawai’i scene and then the application of shells to enhance the scene. The painting and shell-craft masterpiece was done on a round table top that was about 30-inches in diameter.

Artist and Club Member Kelly Timm

Shell Horn Blowers

Our youngest club member, 6-year old Taya Thorup, joined our ‘shell horn’ musicians team this year with teenagers, Scooter and Jonathan Reid. Taya and the Reid brothers sound their shell horns at the start of each meeting to get everyone’s attention and to get the meeting underway.

Field Trip to Oregon State University

by Marici Reid

The Oregon Shell Club went back to school on Sunday, May 7 for Oregon State University’s (OSU) Integrative Biology Department’s 2nd annual ‘Open House’ event. It took place in Cordley Hall, Corvallis right in the middle of campus. I arrived in the parking lot with my sons, Scooter and Jonathan, and spotted club member, Clive Cook parked across from us. Clive showed us the way into Cordley Hall.

The OSU Integrative Biology Department is the academic home of at least two of our scholarship recipients, Jenna Sullivan and Alissa Rickborn. Many of the Marine Biology students split their time between Corvallis and the OSU Coastal Marine Experiment Station in Newport in the course of their studies.

We all went into the laboratory that most caught our conchologist’s eye…the Novak lab, which featured the ecology of the kelp forest. We attended a brief but interesting talk on the Kelp Forest off the Pacific Coast (our own local marine habitat!) which discussed the study of predators. We were pleasantly surprised (okay, not that surprised) to run into more club members. I learned some interesting facts here: giant kelp forests are prone to being obliterated during storms, so it’s a good thing they can grow up to 2-feet a day. I knew that sea otters keep the kelp forests healthy by keeping sea urchin populations down; but I did not know that sea urchins, in spite of their primitive nervous systems, can switch from being relatively harmless solitary grazers during normal times, to forming aggressive hordes that eat everything in sight to produce ‘urchin barrens’ where kelp is wiped out. Shannon Hann (purple jacket in background) observes sea anemone fluorescence while Betty Kronbuegel views a juvenile sea anemone through a dissecting scope during one of the informative sessions we attended.

(L to R) Steve Dulaney, Kathleen Troutman, Charlotte Miles and Brenda Russell participated in this session as well.

Other laboratories were open in various parts of the five-story building, featuring the research of both faculty and students in such areas as genetic studies in fruit flies which have applications for Alzheimer’s disease; the study of local insects, and how they may tie into ancient geological events; coral animals and their genetics with relation to resistance to bleaching - a very real threat in tropical seas today; plankton and algae; and finally a visit to the copepod research area. One of our scholarship recipients, Jenna Sullivan did a session on sea star wasting disease, but it was one of the earliest sessions and we had to make a choice on attending it or other less-well known session topics at that time slot.

Graduate student, Jack describes his sea anemone research project to Kathleen Troutman, Betty Kronbuegel, Laurelyn Schellin and Charlotte Miles

The highlight of my visit, and I imagine others’ as well, was the Oregon State University Arthropod Collection curated by Dr. Christopher Marshall. I, for one, love arthropods of all kinds, and they really put some spectacular specimens out for the public to see at this Open House event. While the collection focuses on native species, there is an impressive collection of insects and other arthropods from around the world so that researchers can perform comparative studies, There were some amazingly beautiful drawers of butterflies, some gigantic beetles, some oddities – but the most interesting part was hearing Dr. Marshall relate the life histories of some local species, such as the endangered Fender’s Blue Butterfly and some recently discovered Rain Beetles in the Columbia Gorge.

Dr. Marshall speaking to some of our club members about the OSU arthropod collection

All together we had about fifteen of our club members attend, and all at about the same time. We appeared to be the largest contingent in attendance – like a mob of sea urchins, and hungry too, by the end of the tour. We had originally planned to try to sit down for lunch together but, since it was Sunday, most of the nearby eating places were closed. However, a small group of us walked about a block from Cordley Hall and ate lunch together at Chipotles. It was a very worthwhile trip to a beautiful campus.

2017 Oregon Shell Show

Shell Show Winners

The winners of special awards at the Oregon shell club’s annual shell show held on August 25-September 5, 2017 in Columbia Hall at the Oregon State Fair were:

duPont Trophy Winner - Marici Reid

Conchologists of America Trophy Winner - Bruce Schulz

Jean McCluskey Trophy Winner - Brenda Russell

Thomas Hale Award Winner - Jonathan Reid

Maxine Hale Award Winner - Betty Kronbuegel

Best Junior Exhibit Winner - Jonathan Reid

Shell of the Show Winner - Bruce Schulz

Winning shell - Goliath Strombus, Titanostrombus goliath Schrӧter, 1805

Peoples Choice Award Winners: (tie) Betty Kronbuegel & Bruce Schulz

(L to R) Marici Reid, Brenda Russell, Betty Kronbuegel, Bruce Schulz, Jonathan Reid

Our club was allotted four large display cases for our displays.

We also had an information table (covered with a blue table cloth with colorful fishes.)

Volunteer club members served at the information table and assisted fairgoers in playing the ‘Shell Matching Game’ to win a free shell. Over 500 people played the game during the show.

Brenda Russell’s display on ‘Cowries with Teeth’.

Betty Kronbuegel’s elegant ‘White on Black’ shell display.

Strombidae display submitted by Bruce Schulz.

Junior member, Jonathan Reid, entered a display on Oregon land snails.

Club president, Marici Reid provided an artistic display on Oysters and Anobiidae.

John Mellott’s display on Oregon shells, in support of his Columbia Hall stage presentation on ‘Explore Oregon’.

‘Large shells’ display by John Mellott

A continuation of John Mellott display on Oregon shells.

Exhibit by Betty Kronbuegel