Rudolf Scheltema

Scientist Emeritus
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution


Between June 23 and 29, 1993, the R.V. Oceanus sailed from the Azores to Woods Hole taking plankton samples at four-hour intervals around the clock. The larvae of coastal inshore benthic invertebrates were sorted from samples at sea, each individual kept alive in small volumes of water. All larvae metamorphosed into post-larval forms and confirmed our laboratory settlement experiments. It showed the importance of such "far-wandering" larvae that drift across oceans far above the bottom, answering the criticism that such larvae lose their competence to metamorphose. It was a major breakthrough to the understanding of the biogeography of such benthic species. All this in but one week!!!