Water research round-up
Several research milestones have been reported by the Cawthron Institute in the last six months, ranging from the surprising results of a marine survey of Hector’s dolphins through to a scampi farming breakthrough which has seen the tasty deep sea animals successfully raised in captivity.
Dolphin headcount turns up surprise
Hector’s dolphins are one of the world’s rarest dolphins, but the results of a three-year survey to update Hector’s dolphin numbers and distribution has revealed there are between 12,000 and 18,500 nationwide. The last published estimate was just over 7000. Of concern, however, was that around half were found far outside
Water quality maps
Water maps showing transient water qualities may soon be available to boaties, anglers, and mussel farmers in the Tasman and
Freshwater algae’s toxic secret
A research team, co-led by Cawthron’s Dr Susie Wood, has been investigating what triggers toxin production in freshwater bluegreen algae as part of a three-year Marsden Fund project. “It appears one of the reasons they produce toxins is as a coping mechanism in response to extreme shifts in their environment created when blooms form,” says Dr Wood. “Unlike many organisms that produce toxins to protect themselves against predation, we believe that toxin production in cyanobacteria protects the cells from adverse conditions.” In the future, the researchers hope to predict toxin production in real time to enable governments, councils, and regulators to better protect the public. Read more ...
Scampi farming breakthrough
The world’s first captive scampi have been raised from eggs by Cawthron Institute aquaculture scientists, taking