International Conferences and Workshops
International CO2 & Natural Analogues Network (ICONA)
Ocean acidification is widely recognized as a major threat to marine ecosystems, and there is a pressing need for science-based management in order to mitigate the future degradation of marine ecosystems around the world. The project aims at facilitating innovative research on the ecosystem-level effects of ocean acidification using natural analogues. This allows us to efficiently disseminate the findings that can underpin adaptive management strategies in order to mitigate the impacts of rapidly changing ocean conditions. Bayden Russell is a member of ICONA responsible for the marine ecology aspect.
DOSI Climate Change working group
While global seafloor exploration progressively reveals the tremendous diversity and fragmentation of deep-sea ecosystems, their sensitivity to climate change remains largely unconstrained. In addition, a wide range of marine geoengineering techniques have been proposed to remediate the effects on ongoing human-induced climatic change, but their potential impacts on deep-sea ecosystems remains poorly understood. The DOSI Climate Change working group has been working on these issues. Moriaki is a co-lead of the working group with Lisa Levin (Scripps Institution of Oceanography).
MoU signed with University of the Philippines - Visayas
We have just signed a MoU with University of the Philippines (UoP) - Visayas as part of our RGC grant to look at acclimation to thermal stress in high shore oysters Isognomon nucleus. It's really great to catch up and work again with Karen Villarta (pictured here with the MoU), Belle and friends in UoP. We look forward to visiting as soon as possible!
Mechanisms of mutualistic interaction behaviours
The cleaner wrasse is a key species for fish biodiversity by cleaning other fish of parasites. We ask how this behaviour is controlled in the brain and how it may be affected in the future by environmental and climate change. Collaborators: Prof. Rui Rosa & Dr. Jose Paula Ricardo from MARE (Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre), Lisbon.
Solutions for Reducing “Winter” mortality of Hong Kong Oyster
Our SWIMS scientists are intensively working in cooperation with the Lee Kum Kee (LKK) company to tackle the ‘winter mass mortality’ of commercial oysters from Hong Kong and south China, using a multi-integrated approach based on biochemistry, omics, bioinformatics and machine learning for rapid selection of SUPREME-OYSTER strains for harsh environmental tolerance (e.g. high salinity) and superior meat quality.
Fish populations at natural CO2 seeps
Can fish populations adapt to future ocean acidification conditions? We use a natural laboratory at remote CO2 seeps to study fish populations, their behaviour and their genetic adaptive potential to understand climate change effects on fish species. Collaborators: Prof. Ivan Nagelkerken, University of Adelaide, Australia; prof. Timothy Ravai, OIST Okinawa
GO2NE The UNESCO IOC
Global Ocean Oxygen Network (GO2NE), for which Moriaki is a member, is committed to providing a global and multidisciplinary view of deoxygenation, with a focus on understanding its multiple aspects and impacts. The Network offers scientific advice to policy makers to counter this concerning trend and to preserve marine resources in the presence of deoxygenation. The Network’s scientific work, outreach, and capacity building efforts include facilitating communication with other established networks and working groups (e.g. IOCCP, GOOS, IGMETS, GOA-ON, GlobalHAB, WESTPAC O2NE), improving observations systems, identifying and filling knowledge gaps, as well as developing related capacity development activities. GO2NE has prepared summaries on deoxygenation for policy makers.
MarineGEO’s First Collaborative Network Project (SED-BIOME)
MarineGEO Hong Kong, a collaborative project through the Smithsonian, has partnered with more than 50 research teams around the world to lead a collaborative project to assess the effects nutrient pollution has on microbial communities in marine sediments and their ability to decompose organic matter. Using a standardized method of burying tea bags in sediments and measuring its decomposition, SWIMS scientists will compare infaunal microbes across sites including mangroves, coral reefs, seagrass beds, and wetlands. As of this summer, twenty four partners have deployed and retrieved their field kits and the first samples will soon be processed.
We thank Yvonne for her contribution to the GIS website for our biodiversity project
Our intern Yvonne had been creating a geographic information system (GIS) website for our rocky shore biodiversity baseline survey since she came. Yvonne from the HKU ENVM Programme has joined us for her internship throughout semester 2. She has developed a strong interest and eagerness in GIS, spatial analysis, and remote sensing during her undergraduate thesis on change detection and her internship in the Chinese Academy of Science. She recognizes WebGIS as a convenient powerful tool that provides broader access to authoritative GIS data and enables you to make better analysis and decisions in any discipline (such as the real-time covid-19 epidemic information tracking).
We were so impressed when she presented the GIS product to us. Her intern has ended and we will definitely miss her! We hope she enjoyed working with us in the past few months. We will publish the GIS website once it's finished - stay tuned!
New MoU and student at Prince Songkla University
Following on from our research trip earlier this year, this November we signed a new MoU with Prince of Songkla University through Dr Kringpaka Wangkulangkul (Farng) to work on the ecophysiology of limpets at Koh Lanta. To kick off this research, Mei (Suphatsara Sangphueak) is starting her Master's degree co-supervised by Farng and Gray! Welcome Mei!