The course will provide an overview of marine and freshwater ecology, with an emphasis on their structure and function. Furthermore, the course will cover oceanography, physical and chemical properties of aquatic environments, characteristics of sub-Arctic environment and organisms, nutrient cycles, food webs, biodiversity, community ecology, and habitat utilization. Case studies will be introduced from utilization of Icelandic marine and freshwater populations. Field and practical sessions will cover marine, freshwater and intertidal habitats. Field work, as well as problem and discussion sessions, will focus on theory and hypothesis driven approaches and analyses. Students will also write an extended literature review paper on a particular topic and present the paper orally to teachers and classmates.
At the end of the course, the student should be able to:
- explain the key concepts in marine and freshwater ecology
- explain the principles of oceanography and physical forces (e.g. currents and temperature) and their weight in shaping marine and freshwater ecosystems
- describe and explain the main biological processes in marine and freshwaters
- describe and explain the various sampling methods to assess biodiversity in marine and freshwater environment
- list the main organismal groups, and key species in marine and freshwater systems in the northern hemisphere
- give an overview of the status on the current utilization of marine and freshwater resources in the North Atlantic in comparison to rest of the world