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MB2050 - Functional Biology of Marine Organisms

Credit points: 3
Year: 2019
Student Contribution Band: Band 2
Administered by: College of Science and Engineering

The description of tropical marine habitats identifying key biological features of each. Functional biology of selected vertebrate and invertebrate marine groups with comparative treatments of benthic and nektonic, planktonic and pelagic organisms. The identification of structural and functional features of key marine organism assemblages in reef, mangrove, benthic and oceanic environments.

Learning Outcomes

  • identify the major biological challenges which aquatic existence imposes on marine organisms through a study of various marine habitats and their inhabitants;
  • analyse the structural and functional solutions developed by key groups of marine organisms to meet such challenges;
  • review how organisms from very different taxonomic backgrounds respond to common requirements of feeding, growth, locomotion and reproduction in marine environments;
  • learn basic laboratory techniques relevant to marine research.
Students enrolling in this subject should have a good understanding of level 1 biology, particularly zoology (eg BS1007 or equivalent). A basic understanding of chemistry is also recommended (eg CH1001).
Prerequisites: ZL1001 OR BZ1004 OR AG1004 OR BZ1007 OR BS1007 OR BZ1006


Townsville, Study Period 1, Internal
Census Date 28-Mar-2019
Coordinator: Dr Orpha Bellwood
Lecturers: Professor David Bellwood, Dr Orpha Bellwood.
Workload expectations:

The student workload for this 3 credit point subject is approximately 130 hours.

  • 26 hours lectures
  • 30 hours practicals
  • 6 hours fieldwork
  • assessment and self-directed study
Assessment: end of semester exam (60%); quizzes or tests (15%); scientific report based on field data (15%); group work: lab report & oral presentation (10%).

Note: Minor variations might occur due to the continuous Subject quality improvement process, and in case of minor variation(s) in assessment details, the Subject Outline represents the latest official information.