Kay Weltz and co-authors have new paper on the Maugean skate (Zearaja maugeana). They report no detectable genetic variation in the gene regions assayed in the mitochondrial genome. Variation in the nuclear genome was also low, with only eight out of 96 microsatellite loci showing any alternate alleles. The species is likely to be uniquely adapted for survival in the confined waters of the Macquarie Harbour (Tasmania), where it is exclusively found. Low genetic diversity suggests it may struggle with the rapid environmental changes potentially leading to extinction. Read more here. Weltz K, Lyle JM, Semmens JM, Ovenden JR (2018) Population genetics of the endangered Maugean skate (Zearaja Maugeana). Conservation Genetics Early on line Nov 2018 doi:10.1007/s10592-018-1117-0
For those interested in elasmobranch research, there is a new publication coming soon from CRC Press. If you are interested in population genetics, then go to this chapter for the latest information. Ovenden J., Dudgeon C., Feutry P., Feldheim K., Maes G. E. (2019) Genetics and Genomics for Fundamental and Applied Research on Elasmobranchs. In: Shark Research. Emerging Technologies and Applications for the Field and Laboratory. (eds. Carrier JC, Heithaus MR, Simpfendorfer C), pp. 235-253. Taylor and Francis Group, Boca Raton.
A newly published study led by Samuel Williams used genetic analyses to show that the numbers of marlin caught by various fisheries worldwide may be incorrect. Without features such as fins and bills (that are commonly removed to prepare product for market), even the experts have great difficulty in correctly identifying marlin species. This is a problem because counts of individuals are used to monitor fishing impact on populations. Mistakes at this level can lead to incorrect assessments of the capacity of the populations to sustain fishing. Read more here. Congratulations to Sam for completing the requirements for the award of PhD at the University of Queensland. Caption: Julian Pepperell (left) and Sam working with harvested marlin.
Andy Moore (Molecular Fisheries Laboratory Associate) visited UQ today for talks with Jenny. Andy is based at the Bureau of Agricultural and Resources Economics and Sciences in Canberra. He works on a range of topics including quantitative stock assessments, fisheries status reporting, genetics, and recreational fishing surveys. Andy is currently primary investigator on a national social and economic recreational fishing survey and a national survey of the catch of southern Bluefin tuna in Australia, as well as a scientific member on Recfishing Research, the Victorian RAC, the Great Australian Bight Resource Assessment Group. Left: Andy's seminar on designing research surveys for estimating blue fin tuna recreational catch was well attended at the EcoSciences Precinct. Thanks to Jess Morgan.
The visit by Professor Dan Heath from University of Windsor (Canada) came to an end on 24th April 2018. As well as enjoying the fabulous University of Queensland campus and mild weather, Dan collaborated with Jenny and MFL members on eDNA and transcriptome projects. We look forward to further visits!
All welcome to Dan's seminar this Friday at University of Queensland. Poster gives the details.
Minor Update of v2.1 March 2018 The update corrects an error in the mac version of the software where the output file had only headers (no content) when the Frequency Output file was chosen on the interface. Please download the latest version.
Congratulations to Ms Carolina Vargas-Caro for the successful completion of her PhD at the University of Queensland. Carolina was co-supervised by Mike Bennett of the Shark and Ray lab and Jenny Ovenden of the Molecular Fisheries Laboratory. Photo: Carolina and Peter Last at CSIRO Fish Collection in April 2014 measuring skate specimens.
Congratulations to Di Barton for leading this huge collaborative study on Grass Emperor genetics, otoliths and parasites. Download the paper here. Front (L to R) Laura Taillebois, Safia Maher, Dave Welch, Di Barton, Christine Dudgeon, Jenny Ovenden Back Richard Saunders, Dave Crook, Thor Saunders, Steve Newman and Jonathan Taylor