Dr Karen Westwood - Voyage Project Manager / Biogeochemist

My research focusses on single celled organisms in the Southern Ocean called marine microbes (bacteria, phytoplankton, protozoa). These organisms are important for two main reasons: they form the base of the Antarctic food web, and they drive the biological pump in the Southern Ocean where up to 12 percent of anthropogenic CO2 emissions are absorbed. I’ll be examining whether whales stimulate primary and bacterial production through their iron-rich faeces (iron normally limits growth of marine microbes), by deploying a marker buoy to drift with a whale “poo-patch”, and by sampling in regions where whales and krill are present or absent.

This page was last updated on 24 February 2022