First Grant for the Solar Slugs!
We just got some great news, that we have received the first outside funding for the Solar Slug project! The Washington Area Marine Aquarist Society has awarded the project $500 to get work started on slug neuroanatomy. The general idea is to stain baby slugs for acetylated tubulin, which will stain axons, and therefore tell us where the nerves are. This will be crucial in working out how the slugs process information about their environment. Because the slugs are essentially pancakes with everything embedded in tissue (rather than having nice hollow spaces like people or insects), it has been difficult to do this kind of thing using standard dissection methods.
Now that the adults are getting fat on recent batches of Bryopsis, I hope to soon see some eggs, and then grow some small slugs for staining. It may be a while, but I have a year to spend the money. Keeping fingers crossed that a little support may attract more, espcecially if we start to get some nice preliminary data.
Thank you WAMAS!