Comparing recently mated and stored sperm derived broods in the sailfin molly Poecilia latipinna

Alena Arnold ’23
Major: Biology (Zoology)
Hometown: Jeromesville, Ohio

A.J. Lashway ’23
Major: Zoology
Hometown: Niskayuna, New York

Alyssa Baxter ’22
Major: Zoology
Hometown: Powell, Ohio

Katherine Walter ’23
Major: Pre-Professional Zoology
Hometown: Covington, Washington

Makenna Juergens ’23
Major: Pre-Professional Zoology
Hometown: Springfield, Ohio

Alax Crawford ’21
Major: Biology (Zoology)
Hometown: South Lyon, Michigan

Faculty Mentor: Shala Hankison

Many animal species use sperm storage as a way to increase their reproductive fitness by allowing them to produce offspring even in the absence of a mate. However, sperm storage may have its own trade-offs. Our research used sailfin mollies, Poecilia latipinna, to determine any differences between broods produced by recently mated female mollies and broods produced as a result of sperm storage. We found that recently mated females tended to produce larger broods (more offspring) than females that used sperm storage. This finding indicates that sperm storage might require females to allocate more resources to the offspring.

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Comparing Natural versus Captive Social Behaviors of Harbor Seals

Reagan Jennings ’23
Majors: Pre-Professional Zoology and Biology
Hometown: Everett, Washington

Faculty Mentor: Shala Hankison

I spent the Spring 2021 semester doing comparative research observing wild and captive harbor seal social behaviors. A team of divers in Washington state went on underwater excursions from February to May searching for harbor seals and recording their behaviors. Meanwhile I was awarded a small grant by Ohio Wesleyan University to complete weekly observations of captive seals at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. I collected and organized all of the recorded observations and compared them to determine if the captive seals are reflecting natural social behaviors and are thus being properly enriched.

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The Beauty of Ohio in your Hands

Ash Moen ’21
Majors: Environmental Science and Zoology
Hometown: Elyria, Ohio

Faculty Mentor: John Krygier

The objective of this project was to find a creative and integrative way to encourage people to think about care about environmental issues without having to leave OWU’s campus. The outcome was a tangible book that was distributed to various faculty, staff, students, and community members. I traveled from Lake Erie to Hocking Hills to take pictures of the nature that is available right here in Ohio. Each photo was paired with an original poem designed to not only showcase nature but bring positivity to the reader. The book encourages readers to share the book with others and share the positivity it brings.

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Impact of Yoga on youth anxiety

Emily Sheridan ’21
Major: Health and Human Kinetics-Exercise Science
Hometown: North Smithfield, Rhode Island

Faculty Mentors: Andrew Busch and Chris Modica

Anxiety disorders are the most prevalent psychological disorder among children. Over 4 million youths have a serious psychiatric disorder that causes significant impairments. Prevalence data of a representative U.S. sample showed that 50% of adolescents affected by anxiety had their onset before the age of six. Anxiety is associated with mood disorders, suicide attempts, and psychiatric hospitalization. The impact of anxiety on youth is significant which is why there is a push to find effective ways to reduce anxiety. Yoga has been an increasingly popular activity with the youth populations. In 2007, over 1.5 million children were participating in yoga programs in the United States. Yoga is described as mindful and contemplative practice that includes structured activities that “require individuals to exercise volitional control” over their physical and mental activity. Yoga for children often modifies the movements and postures and focuses on mental and emotional awareness and self regulation skills. There have been many studies about the positive effects of yoga on the adult population. However, there is a lack of evidence on the effectiveness of yoga in reducing anxiety in children and adolescents.

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Contact Info


Slocum Hall
65 S. Sandusky St.
Delaware, OH 43015
P 740-368-3880

David Markwardt, Associate Dean of the OWU Connection