Recently I sat down with Adam Woods (Australian museum science communicator) and journalist Clare Watson to talk about citizen science and its increasing popularity. You can read the resulting article in The Stand and hear about some of the citizen science we have been lucky enough to be involved in—ranging from recreational fishers fishing deep water and sending in records of rarely seen fish, to keen backyard naturalists who are logging sightings of frogs and koalas in the suburbs. You can find the full free to access article here!
One part of my PhD research was working with NSW DPI and UOW to assess the performance of marine protected areas (MPAs). We recently had an article published in Biological Conservation where we used seafloor mapping to improve the assessment of the Lord Howe Island Marine Park (free download here till July 20th). Here’s a quick rundown on what we found…
As expected, the highly anticipated Blue Planet II series has been nothing short of amazing. This week we are incredibly lucky to have a guest post by shark researcher; Samantha Andrzejaczek who helped film the upcoming Blue Planet episode. Sammy is a PhD candidate at the Australian Institute of Marine Science and University of Western Australia investigating the vertical movement of sharks. She also runs a fantastic blog – www.sammyshark.wordpress.com, which we definitely recommend checking out. Read on to go behind the scenes of Blue Planet II. You can watch the episode this Saturday night (17th) on Channel 9 in Australia. Continue reading
Fish Thinkers has just become an official project supporter of Australasian fishes, which as someone that has a
slight obsession with fish, I am rather happy about. Set up by the Australian Museum in 2016, it is a really nice example of a citizen science project that is open to all and it is getting lots of interesting results. Continue reading
Shopping can be confusing at the best of times, and trying to find environmentally friendly options makes it even more difficult. Welcome to our Sustainable Shopping series, in which we ask experts to provide easy eco-friendly guides to purchases big and small. Continue reading
Pregnant Sharks and Rays Abort Offspring When Fished – Guest post by Kye Adams
Have you ever seen a viral video of a shark or ray giving birth (e.g. River Monsters)? Unfortunately, it turns out these videos have a pretty dark explanation: There’s a fairly high chance the female is actually aborting her pups due to the stress of being caught. Continue reading
Dr Andrew Chin is based at the Centre for Sustainable Tropical Fisheries and Aquaculture – James Cook University and is the current president of the Oceania Chondrichthyan Society. He is also the Programme Director of Shark Search Indo-Pacific, a project that I personally find incredibly interesting and have been following closely. Andrew stopped by Fish Thinkers to give us the inside scoop on Shark Search Indo-Pacific in the guest post below: Continue reading
Daniel Swadling is a new PhD student at the University of Wollongong who is embarking on a project to better understand the relationship between temperate fishes and their habitats. He also loves his luderick and drummer fishing using an old school Alvey reel, so he is going to fit in just fine and I sense there will be plenty of fishing adventures in the future. Below is his guest post recapping his honours project and where he is heading with his PhD research.
My name is Daniel, I am a PhD student at the University of Wollongong (UOW) Continue reading
Are you concerned about the health of New South Wales marine environment?
If you are, it is worth looking at the NSW Marine Estate Threat and Risk Assessment Draft Report and providing a submission or comment to improve the assessment.
The report will be used to determine the most important threats and risks to the NSW marine environment and your submission could help decide where management actions are directed. Note: submissions are due this Saturday the 30th of April.
The website contains the current threat and risk assessment for a range of human activities on environmental assets (for e.g. fish, beaches, rocky reef etc.). It is interesting to see what the current risk ratings are for certain human activities and how the NSW Marine Estate justify these ratings.
To search for this information the NSW Marine Estate has developed an interactive tool to help you navigate through the draft assessment. Once you have identified a human activity (for e.g. recreational fishing) and its risk on an environmental asset (for e.g. the fish assemblage) there are links to a variety of reports used to justify this ranking plus a link to provide your own feedback.
The interactive tool did take me some time to get the hang of, so below are instructions and screen grabs to help you navigate your way through the site.
If you are in Jervis Bay and see someone knee deep surrounded by rays or alternatively sitting staring at rays for hours on end then chances are you are looking at the “mother of rays” otherwise known as Joni – the driving force behind the Stingray Diaries. She’s studying smooth stingrays throughout the Jervis Bay Marine park, in conjunction with Fisheries NSW and gives us a rundown on her research in her guest blog below…
Top shelf bottom feeders
Learning to swim by getting thrown off the end of a busy public wharf on the Hawkesbury River in nothing but a pair of hot pink floaties… Living in a swimsuit and covered in sand every single day of the year… Chucking tantrums when told to come inside after playing on the beach all day because it was dark… At the age of 4, saying with great certainty, “Mum, when I grow up I’m going to be a Marine Biologist.” Continue reading