Projects

Human impacts threaten native kelps: What can be done?

Supervisory Team:

Primary supervisor: Dr Beth Strain

Co-supervisors: Assoc Prof Catriona Macleod and  Dr Wouter Visch

Brief project description:

This study will investigate the interactions between kelp farming the associated biofouling community. This project comes with a $2,000 AUD scholarship.

Specifically, the thesis aims to:

  1. Quantify the flora and fauna on 2 species of cultured kelps and bare ropes at 6 sites: 2 sites adjacent to finfish leases, 2 sites adjacent to bivalve leases and 2 sites, 2 sites with cultured kelps only in summer and winter
  2. Assess the effects of different amounts of flora and fauna on the performance of 2 species of cultured kelp at 6 sites
  3. Compare the flora and fauna on cultured and natural kelps, at 3 sites.

The results of this thesis will provide quantitative measurements of the effects of different types of kelp farming, on the associated flora and fauna. Furthermore, the findings of this study may offer novel insights into the best timing for culturing kelps in the IMTA system.

The student will learn key skills in fieldwork (eg. snorkeling), taxonomy, and quantitative ecology. The project will involve both laboratory and field work and data analyses.

Skills students will develop during this research project:

The student will learn key skills in fieldwork (eg. snorkeling), taxonomy, and quantitative ecology. The project will involve both laboratory and field work and data analyses.


For more information, please contact Dr Beth Strain

Authorised by the Executive Director, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
April 22, 2021