I am a graduate student at UC Berkeley studying the diversity and evolution of whelks. This summer I was sponsored by the NSF (USA) and JSPS (Japan) to work with Dr. Seiji Hayashi at Nagoya University in Japan to collect buccinid gastropod (whelk) tissue samples and examine whelk shell collections at musems throughout Japan. Sugoi! Some of the snails that I study are pictured to the right.

Thursday, August 14, 2008


Today is one of the days of the Japanese Buddist holiday of Bon, or Obon. In Japanese, an "o" is often added as a prefix to the name of something venerated. I think that is why this holiday can be called "Obon", though I am not sure. Other Japanese words, for example, "cha", which means tea is so respected that it is most often called "ocha". Or to say "how is it going?" to a person to whom you should show special deference you might say, "O-genki des ka?" Otherwise you would say, "genki des ka?" Anyway, I was looking at the very helpful (to foreigners) website of the Nagoya International Center and noticed that they are sponsoring a photo contest. I am not really interested in the contest, but it made me think about the photos I have taken since I have been in Japan. So I sorted through them and selected my favorites. Here they are.

Damselfly and exuvium at Tokugawaen in Nagoya.
Tokugawaen waterfall.Japanese fishing canoe, Rikuzen-TakataTorii at Suemori shrine, Nagoya.Shimenawa (rope) and gohei (strips of white paper) at the Suemori shrine, Nagoya.Cicada at temple in Joetsu.Takata (rice paddy) beetle, Joetsu.Graves at Zuihoden Masoleum, Sendai.Lily pads, Hagashiyama Botanical Garden, Nagoya.Nagoya CastleDamselfly at Orchid Gardens, Nagoya.Dragonfly at Tokugawaen, Nagoya.Frog in rice paddy, Joetsu.Hemipteran insect, Joetsu.Gohei at Kasugayama shrine, Joetsu.Graves at Ringseni Temple, Joetsu.Shimenawa at Nagoya shrine. Flower, Joetsu.Fish @ fish market, Sendai.

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