Category Archives: Conservation

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Find a shark…egg case

Haploblepharus_pictus_Dark_shyshark by Seascapeza

Picture: Seascapeza

 Sharks keep our largest and most important ecosystem healthy…our oceans.  Being at the top of the food chain in the marine environment, they regulate the populations of other marine life, helping to keep fish stocks in the ocean healthy.  As our oceans cover over 70% of the earth’s surface and houses 80% of life on earth, maintaining this ecosystem is crucial to life on earth. By monitoring and understanding local shark species and what they need in order to thrive, we can contribute meaningfully to protecting our natural heritage.  How, as members of the public with no scientific background at all, can we help?  All you need is a willingness to help and you can be a citizen scientist!… More:

Possible Tsunami Debris-Drifting Fish Now Held at Oregonian Research Facility

Photo by opencage. CC by 3.0.

Photo by opencage. CC by 3.0.

 What an understatement it is to say that the devastating Japanese tsunami of 2011 constituted a major ecological disturbance. Having lived on the Oregon coast at that time and having seen the massive amounts of debris that littered our shores in its aftermath, I can attest that people there were for a long time recovering items that drifted across the Pacific from Asia. It is at least conceivable that some Asian fish species (whether as juveniles or adults) were able to invade North America via the flotsam and jetsom. Indeed, five barred knifejaw or striped beakfish (Oplegnathus fasciatus) were discovered in a lost Japanese boat that turned up in Long Beach, Washington in 2013. One of these specimens was turned in to the Seaside Aquarium (where it reportedly continues to thrive to this very day). And now, roughly two years after this first sighting, the species has again been taken from the Northeast Pacific. In this case, a single specimen had been captured in a crab pot by fishermen near Port Orford, Oregon. This animal was successfully transported alive to a holding system under the care of a buyer before being moved to the quarantine facility of the Hatfield Marine Science Center (up in Newport) to be evaluated by Oregon State University aquatic veterinarian Tim Miller-Morgan of Oregon Sea Grant.… More:

Summer Course at BIOS to Focus on Coral Reef Fishes

An upcoming course in coral reef ecology, offered by the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS), will give university-level students a unique opportunity to “gain hands-on experience with modern research methods.” Using the ultimate wet lab–the ocean itself–participants will learn valuable skills such as scientific diving and modern molecular research methods. These skills are meant to augment instruction on reef fish anatomy/classification acquired in a decidedly more traditional classroom setting. The aim is to produce a more focused and competent generation of coral reef fish scientists. Co-instructors Dr. Gretchen Goodbody-Gringley (of BIOS) and Dr. Luiz Rocha (of California Academy of Science) will cover topics such as anatomy and physiology, phylogeny, social systems, movement, feeding, reproduction, recruitment, growth, population ecology, community ecology, fisheries biology, recruitment, larval biology, herbivory, cleaning, and nocturnal behavior and data analysis.… More:

Huge Leatherback Sea Turtle Released After Rescue

turtle Yawkey, a 475- lb Leatherback Sea Turtle, was released back into the Atlantic Ocean, off the South Carolina Coast Thursday. Leatherbacks are critically endangered species. The turtle was found the week prior, stranded on the beach, and brought to the South Carolina Aquarium Sea Turtle Hospital. Despite its massive size, the gender of this turtle was not able to be determined.  While Leatherbacks are the worlds largest turtles, their reproductive system does not develop until the turtles are fully grown, which can take a long time. Although the precise age for maturity varies and is not known, female leatherbacks have been estimated to become sexually mature at around 35 to 40 years old.… More:

Definitely Not Reef Safe – Gargantuan Stingray in Thailand May be a Record Breaker

 Deviating from saltwater here, this giant freshwater stingray (Himantura polylepis) discovered in Thailand’s Mae Klong river may be the largest freshwater fish recorded! Scientists happened upon the beast while filming Ocean Mysteries, an ABC production hosted by nature conservationist Jeff Corwin. Among those wrangling in the beautiful creature was veterinarian Nantarika Chansue, a professor at Chulalongkorn University who’s been studying the rays in the area for nearly a decade.… More:

Weedy Seadragons Available to Hobbyists

reefs.comSeadragonColdwater Marine Aquatics is bringing in captive raised weedy seadragons (Phyllipteryx taeniolatus) available to the masses. For me this news is akin to the first time I heard Borbonius anthias coming into the industry after drooling over their pictures for years. I had the pleasure of meeting the C.M.A. crew at MACNA Denver last year. I can tell you that these guys are incredibly knowledgeable regarding their niche in the industry, seemingly offering only the healthiest animals all around. I asked C.M.A. regarding the rearing technique and they replied with, “Berried adult males are collected annually and the young are hatched out and raised in captivity.”… More:

Pomacanthus Angelfish Update

One of our first Rising Tide successes was harvesting eggs from Columbus Zoo and Aquarium (CZA), shipping them to UF’s Tropical Aquaculture Lab, and successfully raising what turned out to be semicircle angelfish. We had samples from that first cohort DNA analyzed for identification. We have since raised multiple cohorts shipped to us from CZA; which has been well documented in previous blog posts (late 2011-early 2012). Ramon Villaverde at CZA has also raised multiple cohorts of angelfish in house. When space got limited we arranged for those juvenile angelfish to be sent to public aquariums which not only had adequate space to house them, but also could effectively inform the public about Rising Tide’s endeavors. We were always curious what other Pomancanthus species (if any) may be spawning in that exhibit

Rabbitfish Fisheries Possible Model for Culture of Marine Ornamentals?

Photo by Leonard Low. CC by 2.0.

Photo by Leonard Low. CC by 2.0.

 Bagoóng is a traditional condiment for Filipino cuisine that is made of fermented fish or shrimp. Bagoóng isdâ, the fishy version, is fermented in brine for several months before it is finally prepared and packaged. This delicacy, which is typically used to enhance the flavor other foods, can be made in different ways with different types of fish. Especially popular is padas, a bagoóng isdâ that is prepared from the juvenile rabbitfish (Siganus spp.). A status symbol, it is customarily served during religious holidays. Vendors sell the specialty item in tightly packed jars in all kinds of shops and markets. Sometimes, the small fish are intricately and artfully arranged within the jar. For aquarists and aquaculturists, this would be just be an amusing factoid about one commonly kept family of fishes, were it not that intense demand for bagoóng padas products has led to a substantial fishery. Filipino farmers focus on several local rabbitfish species (collectively referred to as malaga or samaral), including Siganus canaliculatus, S. concatenates, S. corallinus and S. spinus. These fishes can easily sell for three times the price of common selections, so competition among producers is fierce. Today, in the Philippines, rabbitfish are a commercially-important fishery, contributing 560 million tons (with juveniles accounting for 60 million tons) to the total annual fishery production. That’s a lot of fish paste.  … More: is the world's leading destination for sustainable coral reef farming and the aquarium hobby. We offer a free open forum and reef related news and data to better educate aquarists and further our goals of sustainable reef management.