Friday, June 14, 2013

Star Scientists

In the past week two researchers at HIMB appeared in articles of the Star Advertiser. Brian Bowen landed on the front page of Saturday's (6/8/13) paper in an interview for the article, "Research traces lineage of sea life to Hawaii waters." Bowen discusses his recently publish findings on species dispersal from Hawaii. Being isolated islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, it was assumed that species that evolved here wouldn't branch out and establish populations in other parts of the Pacific. By analyzing DNA from 25 different species, scientists were able to identify five species that had ancestral ties to Hawaii. These five species include the Yellow Tang (Lauipala/Zebrasoma flavescens), the Hawaiian pink snapper (Opakapaka/Pristipomoides filamentosus), the bullethead parrotfish (Uhu/Chlorurus spilurus), the ember parrotfish (Uhu/Scarus rubroviolaceus), and the black seacucumber (Loli/Holothuria atra).

Greta Aeby was interviewed for the "Fish's skin disease still a mystery" article (6/11/13) wherein she discussed the coral disease outbreak on the North Shore of Kauai.  The article focused on a skin disease of the Hawaiian white-spotted toby fish (Canthigaster jastator), but gave generous attention to Aeby's research efforts.  Large blooms of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, are affecting the coral in the areas being surveyed.  This disease is a serious threat to the reef.  Fortunately the disease can be effectively slowed by applying marine epoxy directly to affected corals in a similar manner to a fire line.  The epoxy kills the coral directly beneath it and the encroaching disease is cut off from the healthy coral on the other side of the epoxy quarantine.

If you have a subscription to Star Advertiser you can read these articles by following the links below.
"Research traces lineage of sea life to Hawaii waters" - Hawaii News Premium
"Fish's skin disease still a mystery" - Hawaii News Premium

No comments:

Post a Comment