Monday, August 1, 2011

The is up and running! and other News from the Beach

-Finally after a month of struggling with our (crap) internet connection I have managed to upload The Maru research center’s website. Check it out at I am really very excited about the future of the Maru. Maru (마루) is a Korean word that refers to the central room in a traditional Korean hanok home in which guests are entertained, meals are eaten, and information is shared. Our goal for The Maru research center is that it too can be a place where Malawians and everyone else can come together to learn, share, and simply enjoy each other’s company while learning about Lake Malawi and those who depend on it. As a volunteer-powered research center we are passionate about teaching our volunteer researchers valuable surveying and diving techniques and methodologies and are now officially accepting volunteer applications. For more information on our volunteer program, click here.

We also welcome university students, whether at the graduate or undergraduate level, to contact us with their research interests to see how we might host and assist them in their pursuits.

Finally it is our goal to make partnerships with local Malawian and international educational institutions in order to promote greater study of Lake Malawi and those who live near it and we invite interested institutions to contact us to see how we might work together.

-If you have been following the news you may have heard that there were some demonstrations in Malawi on the 20th of July. For better informed commentary on them than I can provide check out Haba na Haba’s blog and various Malawian online newspaper’s coverage of the events at or At The Maru and Aquanuts we like to focus more on what’s happening below the water than above it but we do hope that the problems facing Malawians can be resolved peacefully and swiftly. At the Lake all has been calm and life continues as normal.

- Male black chambos, a species of cichlid that is particularly loved on the dinner table here in Malawi, have been very busy making their mating nests lately. These holes in the sandy lake floor can reach huge proportions often measuring over a meter in diameter and half a meter deep. Take a look at this picture of one.

- Winter and the windy season are coming to a close out here and although it’s been great to be able to snuggle up in a nice thick duvet at night I am excited for a little warmer weather.

- Oh and if you do find any glitches over at please do let me know by shooting me an email at