Juliana arrived today for a six month internship with MFL at UQ. Juliana is an oceanographer and Ph.D. student in the Fishery Genetics and Conservation research group of led by Dr. Fernando Mendonça at Universidade Federal Paulista (Brazil). Juliana's work focusses on the global phylogeography of the Blue shark (Prionace glauca) based on molecular evidence (SNPs and the mitochondrial DNA control region). Left to right: Juliana B. De Biasi, Amelia Armstrong, Dani Davenport and Christine Dudgeon.
Nice way to start the day! ResearchGate.net reports that our paper citing the popular downloadable software NeEstimator has been cited 300 times. Watch out of a new version of NeEstimator soon, which will be enabled for SNP data analyses and other improvements such as the implementation of a new method for estimating confidence intervals. Jones A. T., Ovenden J. R., Wang Y.-G. (2016) Improved confidence intervals for the linkage disequilibrium method for estimating effective population size. Heredity 117, 217-223.
Christine Dudgeon (right), Jenny Ovenden (centre) are pleased to host a visit by Dr Gregory Maes (KU Leuven - JCU). Greg gave an interesting seminar yesterday "Application of genomic tools to inform conservation and management of the Galapagos shark (Carcharhinus galapagensis)", which stimulated lots of discussion about genomics and genetics of elasmobranch species from Australia and worldwide. Greg Maes did his postgraduate training at the University of Leuven (Belgium) on population and conservation genetics of aquatic organisms, focusing on exploited and endangered species such as eels, flatfishes, pikes, hybridogenetic frogs and polyploid invasive carps. He spent 6 years doing various postdocs in Belgium, Finland and Canada, examining the applications of population⁄conservation genomics approaches to exploited freshwater and marine fishes at various spatio-temporal scales. His main interest lies in multidisciplinary connectivity assessments, molecular traceability and the genomic basis of fisheries induced evolution in exploited species. He is currently an Adjunct senior lecturer in Evolutionary and Applied Genomics at James Cook University.
Are you inspired by the work of MFL PhD students on species such as manta-rays, white sharks or marlin? If you would like to support their work (or the work of the Laboratory in general), you can make a donation here. A donation of $50 will genotype two individuals. A donation of $500 will support the registration costs of a student attending a conference. 100% of your donation goes directly to support research at the Molecular Fisheries Laboratory. The University of Queensland does not take out any overheads or fees. Donations are tax-deductible (to Australian donors; Americans can give through the UQ in America Foundation to get the tax deduction) and the Advancement team at the University of Queensland will mail you a thank you letter and tax receipt. Please type in "Molecular Fisheries Laboratory" to direct your donations to us, and many thanks from the team.
Bonnie's latest genetic study suggests that tiger sharks in the Indo-pacific move and interbreed within the region. The study shows that nations in the region need to cooperate to jointly manage and conserve this shared population. Photo: Jenny Ovenden (left) and Bonnie Holmes (right). Holmes, B., Williams, S., Otway, N., Nielsen, E. E., Maher, S., Bennett, M. & Ovenden, J. R. (2017). Population structure and connectivity of tiger sharks (Galeocerdo cuvier) across the Indo-Pacific Ocean Basin. Royal Society Open Science. Read more here.
Project tiger has been upgraded! Collaborative research on historical collections of jaws in 2015 was the basis for the scaling up of the project to include new species (white sharks). The project is now an international collaboration of Australian and Danish population genomics and elasmobranch experts. It is funded by research councils from those nations. Thanks to Carlos Bustamante for the new project logo.
The Maugean skate (Zearaja maugeana) has the most restricted distribution of any species of fish in Australian waters. Its only found in one or two inlets on the remote western coastline of Tasmania in southern Australia. PhD student Kay Weltz has determined that its presence can be detected from DNA in water samples, which means that monitoring the survival of the speices now and in the future can be conducted cheaply and quickly.