Video: Biology students spend summer
on the trail of elusive flatworms © Aug. 12, 2011, Norwich University Office of Communications

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Two Norwich University students, with help from the biology department, are spending summer 2011 researching Turbellarian flatworms in Central Vermont.

These semi-microscopic organisms, of which there are an estimated 4,500 species, are interesting for their regenerative qualities, and because they have been identified as major predators in pond and stream beds. The students go out into the field to collect samples, and then bring them back to the lab to identify and classify the flatworms, building a picture of their population in the area.

Predictably, things have not gone perfectly. Preserving the organisms has proven a particular challenge, and the researchers have tried many different techniques with limited success.

These two biology majors are among a group of more than 20 Norwich students who have spent their summer on campus, performing significant research on topics of personal interest.