Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Fish research techniques course
Dr Glenn Wilson of the University of New England, Armidale, Australia is at HOORC for two weeks, training HOORC researchers and fisheries officers in laboratory and field techniques for researching larval and juvenile fishes. The course will focus on how to estimate the age of young fish through their otoliths -- the earstones found in the skull of all fish species. These grow in concentric layers, much like a tree trunk. During the larval and juvenile phase of the life cycle, these rings are deposited daily, whereas adults deposit annual rings in the otoliths. With age data, it is possible for researchers to determine which years were good or bad for breeding, and look at conditions under which fish were spawning. The course, with lectures, laboratory and field work, is sponsored by the BIOKAVANGO Project 's Fisheries Component.