December 2017

Welcome Pauline Narvaez, who has joined the Marine Parasitology Laboratory for her PhD research. Pauline spent six months volunteering in the laboratory earlier this year assisting with various research projects. She will be supervised by Kate and Prof Mark McCormick for her project investigating food preferences of cleaner organisms and the impact of cleaning interactions on pathogen transmission.

November 2017

Welcome Tian Xu who has joined the laboratory for his Masters of Philosophy and will be supervised by Associate Professor Chaoshu Zeng and cosupervised by Kate Hutson. Tian’s research will develop captive breeding techniques for two marine ornamental crabs: the Harlequin CrabLissocarcinus laevis and the Decorator Crab Camposcia retusa. Congratulations also to Tian who won the Student Prize and People's choice award for the Centre for Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture Photo Competition with this stunning capture of a school of cardinal fish!

October 2017

Kate Hutson successfully applied to become a Scientific Advisory Committee member of the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC) Aquatic Animal Health and Biosecurity Subprogram (AAHBS). The AAHBS comprises government, industry and university representatives and meets three times per year to ensure that FRDC research objectives are commercially focused and outcome driven and to facilitate industry extension and technology transfer.

September 2017

Congratulations to Giana Bastos Gomes who finalised her PhD thesis on parasitic Chilodonella and molecular detection methods for monitoring parasites in pond water on farms. Giana is now working as part of the TropINTERN James Cook University Program. Giana has published three of her thesis Chapters which can be accessed from our publications page.

David has been busy naming new parasite species. In collaboration with Leslie Chisholm and Haakon Hansen he named Electrocotyle whittingtoni, representing a new genus of monocotylid monogenean in honour of the late Dr Ian D. Whittington. David and Kevin Christianson also named Anoplodiscus hutsonae n. sp. in honour of Kate Hutson! See the JCU media release here!

August 2017

Alejandro Trujillo González went to the 8th International Symposium on Monogenea held in Brno, Czech Republic 6-11 of August 2017 where he presented part of his PhD research on alien monogenean parasite species that infect imported ornamental fish species.

July 2017

Kate Hutson, David Vaughan and Giana Bastos Gomes went to the 4th FRDC Australasian Aquatic Animal Health and Biosecurity Scientific Conference in Cairns, Australia from 10-14 July 2017. Kate presented her research on establishing and maintaining fish parasite cultures while David won second student prize for his oral presentation on cleaner shrimp as biocontrols and Giana won third prize for her overview of ciliate parasites (Chilodonella) infecting freshwater aquaculture fishes.

June 2017

Jonathan (JCU, Singapore) came to see us in Townsville for two weeks training in the laboratory to refine his skills in parasite necropsy prior to commencing his field work on ectoparasites of grouper in Singapore. His visit coincided with Katie Motson’s return from the field (pictured) and it appears we may discovered a new species of capsalid monogenean from the Great Barrier Reef!

May 2017

The lab has been bustling with visitors. We were delighted to host Dr Alexandra Grutter from the University of Queensland and Dr Paul Sikkel from Arkansas State University (USA) who have a shared interest in the role of cleaner organisms in the management of parasites infecting fishes. Pictured are lab members with Lexa during her visit - (L-R) Jonathan Barton, David Vaughan, Kate Hutson, Katie Motson, Pauline Narvaez, Alejandro Trujillo-Gomzalez and Alexandra Grutter. We also had the pleasure of hosting industry leaders in fish aquaculture, CEO Chris O’Donoghue from Asparapearl, Singapore, and Group Technical Manager, David Whyte from Huon Aquaculture and look forward to developing productive research relationships with these partners.

April 2017

Congratulations to PhD student Alexander Brazenor who finalised his PhD thesis this month. Alex maintained an in vivo culture of Neobenedenia girellae for four years which enabled him to examine various biological aspects of the parasite and produce a data rich thesis and associated publications - see our publications page. Alex is now working as a Policy Officer, Animal Biosecurity, Department of Agriculture and Water Resources in Canberra, Australia.

March 2017

Congratulations to Julian Wilson who has finalised his Master’s degree and is now working for MBD Energy. Julian surveyed the parasite assemblage of invasive Mozambique tilapia in the Ross River, north Queensland and has submitted his findings for publication.

February 2017

Kate Hutson has been working on a new sustainable aquaculture initiative – Quaquaponics – as part of her undergraduate and postgraduate teaching at James Cook University. Her subject Sustainable Aquaculture now boasts a self-sustaining aquaponics system complete with fish, crustaceans, vegetables and ducks as seen on local channel 7 news:

January 2017

Welcome Katie Motson, who has joined the Marine Parasitology Laboratory for her PhD research on the impacts of coral reef health on fish-parasite interactions. Katie completed an MSc at James Cook University in Marine Biology & Ecology following a BSc with Honours at the University of Edinburgh in the UK. She recently had her first paper accepted in Coral Reefs! Katie will be supervised by Kate and Dr Andrew Hoey in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies.

December 2016

We wish you a parasite-free festive season and look forward to continuing our exciting research program next year.

November 2016

The Marine Parasitology Laboratory now has four parasite cultures which provide unique resources for research development, collaboration, industry impact and extension. Over the past five years we have continuously maintained the monogenean fish parasite, Neobenedenia, in culture and have recently expanded to include other harmful parasites of fishes including marine white spot (Cryptocaryon irritans), fish leeches (Zeylanicobdella arugamensis; pictured) and polyclad flatworms that infect coral (Amakusaplana acroporae). Over the coming months, culture conditions will be optimised to ensure a continuous supply of parasites. The cultures are essential for experiments to understand and enable efficient parasite management in captive populations. This project is supported by the JCU Development Grant scheme awarded to Kate Hutson in collaboration with David Bourne (JCU/AIMS), Alexandra Grutter (University of Queensland) and Geoff Boxshall (Natural History Museum, London).

Congratulations to David Vaughan who has had a manuscript accepted in Fish and Fisheries, which is currently ranked the top international fisheries journal. David and collaborators Alexandra Grutter (UQ), Mark Costello (University of Auckland) and Kate Hutson prepared a review paper Cleaner fishes and shrimp diversity and a re-evaluation of cleaning symbioses which provides a global estimate of the cleaner fish and shrimp species and highlights communication between client and cleaner as the catalyst for cooperation.

October 2016

Visit our publications page for full details of recently published work including a review by Giana Gomes on Chilodonella (pictured) which are harmful protozoan parasites in freshwater fish aquaculture (click here for PDF) and Kate Hutson's redescription of the rare copepod, Kabataia in collaboration with Prof Geoff Boxshall at the Natural History Museum, London (click here for PDF).

September 2016

Kate Hutson, David Vaughan and Chaoshu Zeng took out the People's Choice Award at Reperio – a competition organised by the Innovation and Commercialisation Team at JCU. Our pitch? Breeding cleaner shrimp for pedicure treatments in beauty salons... feel free to drop into the lab if you need a relaxing and entertaining foot spa!

Welcome Kate Rawlinson and Kat Dybala who have travelled from the US to collaborate with Jonathan Barton on an experiment examining the impact of temperature on the embryonation of parasitic polyclad flatworm egg. Kate, Jonathan and Kat (pictured) plan to live on site at the Australian Institute for Marine Science (AIMS) for three weeks for the intensive experiment. So far, the worms have been cooperative and laid a sufficient number of egg cluster for sufficient replication! For more details on this collaborative project click here.

August 2016

Congratulations to PhD student Alejandro Trujillo-González who successfully applied for The Crawford Fund Scholar Program. The program was developed to encourage young Australians to engage in international research, development and education for the benefit of agricultural development in developing countries and Australia. Alejandro was one of 15 recipients to attend the Crawford fund conference ‘Waste not, Want not: The Circular Economy to Food Security' held in Canberra during 29-30 August 2016. The conference focused on food loss and waste issues along the supply chain—in production, getting product to market, and the management and reuse of waste. During the conference, Alejandro had a chance to discuss his interest in biosecurity, aquaculture and aquatic animal health, while learning from experts in the field of food production.

Kate Hutson is a "Flying Scientist" as part of the Wonder of Science Program. This role saw her travel on a miniscule aircraft to Cooktown in far north Queensland this month with Wonder of Science Program Manager Robyn Bull, Queensland Chief Scientist Geoff Garrett and Head of Department STEM Champion at Department of Education and Training (Queensland) Adam Hooper. Kate entertained primary school students at Cooktown High School with parasite stories during the day and spoke of various opportunities in science to the general public in the evening.

July 2016

Kate Hutson, Giana Gomes and David Vaughan went to the 2013 Ridley Aqua-Feed Joint Australian Prawn & Barramundi Association Conference in Townsville. Congratulations to Giana Gomes who won second prize for her poster presentation on eDNA technologies for the detection of parasites on barramundi farms.

Kate Hutson, Alejandro Trujillo González, David Vaughan and Jonathan Barton travelled to Heron Island Research station for the 3rd International Workshop on Symbiotic Copepoda (IWOSC) The 3rd IWOSC comprised a fully residential event including research presentations, laboratory based workshops and the opportunity for participants to collect workshop related specimens in the scientific research zone of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. Four days were dedicated to symbiotic Copepoda, with the final day on symbiotic Isopoda. The workshop was organised by Kate Hutson (James Cook University, Australia), Julianne Kalman Passarelli (Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, USA) and Danny Tang (Orange County Sanitation District, USA) while Geoff Boxshall and Rony Huys of The Natural History Museum, London, Nico Smit of North-West University, South Africa and Niel Bruce of the Queensland Museum, Australia were tutors.

May 2016

Welcome Julian Wilson, who has joined the Marine Parasitology Laboratory for his Master's minor research project on protozoan and metazoan parasites of invasive freshwater fishes. Julian is concentrating his sampling efforts on tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus) in the Ross River tributaries.

April 2016

David Vaughan travelled to Lizard Island Research Station this month in his first attempt to discover what cleaner shrimp eat in the wild. Meanwhile, he has also commenced experiments in the laboratory to determine whether cleaner shrimp facilitate wound healing in fish or whether they may aggravate wounds. David is ploughing through hours of video footage of interactions between cleaner shrimp and client fish to determine support for these hypotheses.

March 2016

Congratulations to Giana Gomes (pictured here with Deputy Prime Minister of Australia Barnaby Joyce) who won the prestigious 2016 Minister and Science and Innovation Award for Young People in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (Australian Government Department of Agriculture and Water Resources) for her proposed research project: "New on-farm device for pathogen detection in aquaculture systems". Please click here for more information on Giana's exciting project.

February 2016

Welcome Jonathan Barton. Jonathan joins the Marine Parasitology Laboratory following recent graduation with Honours from California Lutheran University, United States. Jonathan previously spent six months at JCU as part of an undergraduate exchange program and loved it so much that he couldn’t stay away! Jonathan won an International Postgraduate Research Scholarship and will be supervised by Kate Hutson, David Bourne and Craig Humphrey (Australian Institute of Marine Sciences) for his PhD research on parasitic flatworms of coral (pictured).

January 2016

Congratulations and best wishes to Alexander Brazenor who has accepted a position as Scientific Research Officer with the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) in Canberra. We will miss you Alex.

December 2015

Congratulations to Jonathan Barton who published a review on propagation techniques for reef restoration and the ornamental trade in Reviews in Aquaculture. Jonathan plans to commence his PhD in the lab in 2016 with a research focus on parasites that infect coral.

November 2015

Farewell Jonathan Chew! Jonathan has been an active volunteer in the Marine Parasitology Laboratory for the past year. Jonathan (a Masters by Coursework student) has considerable ambition and determination to pursue a career in aquatic animal health and assisted with daily animal husbandry, sampling and data collection for various research experiments in the laboratory. He also accompanied the lab group to the 3rd Australasian Conference in Aquaculture Animal Health and travelled independently to the University of Tasmania for a workshop in aquatic histopathology. Jonathan now works as a Fish Biologist at a marine aquaculture farm in Singapore and is am currently working on fish diseases and parasites. We wish you well Jonathan with your future aquatic animal health endeavours.

October 2015

The Marine Parasitology Laboratory is excited to announce increased capability in experimental research. With the help of Ben Lawes, Andrew Thompson and Simon Weaver at the Marine Aquaculture Research Facility Unit at JCU we have built a large experimental facility dedicated to the study of aquatic animal health. The facility has three separate recirculating seawater systems, each fitted with twenty replicate 120L tanks (i.e. sixty tanks in total), and permits control of light and temperature regimes. We have successfully completed our first experimental trial in the facility on the efficacy of medicated feed on ectoparasites infecting barramundi.

September 2015

Congratulations to Kate Hutson whose teaching excellence in undergraduate and postgraduate subjects at James Cook University was recognised through a prestigious National Teaching Citation from the Australian Office of Learning and Teaching. Kate received the award at a ceremony in Brisbane, Queensland.

Kate Hutson, Alexander Brazenor and Alejandro Trujillo González travelled to Valencia, Spain for the 9th International Symposium on Fish Parasites. Kate gave an invited talk on parasites in tropical aquaculture and a contributed oral presentation on reproductive strategies of monogeneans parasites. Alex presented his research on a monogenean phylogeny and Alejandro spoke about fluorescent staining techniques to examine behaviour of live parasites. David Vaughan contributed a poster presentation (in absentia) on a new species of monogenean infecting electric rays. The team met up with Ana Gabriela Trasviña Moreno from CIBNOR, Mexico (pictured) who maintains a collaboration with the lab with her research on natural anthelmintics against monogenean ectoparasites.

August 2015

Congratulations to Kate Hutson who won a Queensland Young Tall Poppy Science Award which recognises the achievements of Australia’s outstanding young scientific researchers and communicators. The award winners participate in education and community outreach programs to inspire school students and the broader community about the possibilities of science.

July 2015

Congratulations to Alejandro Trujillo González who won 1st prize for his oral presentation at the FRDC Australasian Aquatic Animal Health Conference in Cairns. Alejandro captivated his audience with his research on tracking transparent monogeneans on fish. Results of this research were recently published in the International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife. Alejandro is pictured with 2nd and 3rd prize winners and plenary speaker Larry Hammell from the University of Prince Edward Island.

June 2015

This year the Aquatic Animal Health Technical Forum and Skills Training Workshop (17-19th June 2015) was hosted by James Cook University. This training workshop is sponsored by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries and the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (DAFF/FRDC). Members of the Marine Parasitology Laboratory Kate Hutson, Alexander Brazenor (pictured), Soranot Chotnipat and David Vaughan hosted a 2 hour laboratory session where workshop participants learned how to identify life stages of the harmful monogenean Neobenedenia and practice health management techniques on experimentally infected fish.

May 2015

The Marine Parasitology Laboratory celebrated Star Wars day (4th May) early with a Star Wars themed lab party. The highlight of the event was our Star Wars inspired egg decorating competition (a draw between R2D2 and Darth Maul).

April 2015

Congratulations to Alex Brazenor and Alejandro Trujillo González who were successful with their application for travel grants from the Fisheries Society for the British Isles to present their research at the International Symposium for Fish Parasitology in Valencia, Spain in September this year (pictured at the conference with President of the FSBI, Prof Iain Barber).

March 2015

Welcome back Soranot! Soranot has returned from Thailand to commence his Masters of Philosophy in the laboratory. Soranot's research will examine the efficacy of various chemical treatments against parasite infections in aquaculture.

February 2015

The lab celebrated with cake this month following publications authored by Alejandro, Alex, Kate, Soranot, Terry and Thane. Visit our publications page for full details of our recently published work.

January 2015

Marine Parasitology Lab members, Kate, Alejandro and Josh travelled to the University of Sydney for lab work as part of research on the parasites of ornamental fishes. They also managed some time for a little bit of culture at the pop art exhibition...

December 2014

Congratulations to David Vaughan (pictured) who won a JCU International Postgraduate Research Scholarship and Prestige Scholarship and to Alejandro who won a JCU Postgraduate Research Scholarship. David and Alejandro will commence their PhD research in the Marine Parasitology Laboratory in June, 2015.

October 2014

Vale Associate Professor Ian Whittington.
Ian was internationally renowned for his expertise in marine parasitology and his focus on parasitic flatworms (monogeneans). The Marine Parasitology Laboratory feels a great sense of loss following his death as he has been a constant influence on the development of our research. In recognition of his contribution to the field, the organising committee of the joint New Zealand Society for Parasitology/Australian Society for Parasitology Conference (29th June to 3rd July, Auckland 2015, plan a tribute to him and his research achievements through a dedicated Marine Parasitology Session. Kate will present the laboratories recent work on parasitic Monogenea at the conference and she is looking forward to celebrating the enormous contribution Ian made to parasitology at this event.

August 2014

The Marine Parasitology Laboratory at James Cook University set up an interactive display at the Science and Technology Expo, Townsville, as part of National Science Week. At the event Kate gave a 10 min presentation to high school students on careers in science. Masters student Alejandro and PhD student Giana managed our interactive stand which included small aquaria with live fish and cleaning organisms on display to reflect our current research on the use of biological controls in aquaculture. The public especially enjoyed looking at an assortment of fish parasites under the microscope and checking water quality parameters of our tanks. Our banner was kindly sponsored by the Australian Society for Parasitology and designed by Bud Design Studio.

July 2014

Congratulations to Alejandro who won the best student 2 minute talk at the 50th Australian Society for Parasitology Anniversary Conference in Canberra. Alejandro is pictured with the President of the ASP, Prof Robin Gasser receiving his award.

December 2012

Season's Greetings from the Marine Parasitology Laboratory. We wish all website visitors and regular followers a parasite-free festive season (unlike this unsuspecting catfish embryo covered in monogeneans!).

Thanks to the energy of Masters student Alejandro Trujillo Gonzalez, the Marine Parasitology Laboratory has a new logo. Inspired by the brilliant mind of Alejandro and his fellow staff and students, the logo concept was adapted from the Sneizko three-ring model depicting the interaction between host, pathogen and the environment – which also gives it the appearance of three infected fishes. According to Alejandro, it is all about the interaction.

Kate's recent paper with Leonardo Mata, Nick Paul and Rocky de Nys on seaweed as a natural parasite control was recently published in the International Journal for Parasitology and selected for the editor's choice. To read more please click here.

November 2012

We welcome Dr Terrence Miller who joins our team for the next three years as part of a Smart Futures Fellowship and Queensland Tropical Agri and Aquatic Sciences Grant. Terry will be based at the James Cook University Cairns campus and will lead a new research project, Integrated management of parasite infections in tropical aquaculture and our new sister laboratory, the Aquatic Parasitology Laboratory. Terry is looking forward to establishing a research group in Cairns and working with our financial industry partners (King Reef Seafoods Pty Ltd and Coral Seas Pty Ltd) and Joint Investigator Dr Richard Knuckey from the Northern Fisheries Centre, Department of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry, Queensland (DAFFQ). The research project leaders (Terry, Kate and Richard) recently converged in Cairns to test out their eclipse glasses on a light bulb (below left) prior to being treated to a most spectacular total solar eclipse in Cairns (below right).

October 2012

Congratulations to Dinh Hoai Truong who was awarded a High Distinction for his Masters thesis titled: Survival strategies of an insidious fish ectoparasite, Neobenedenia sp.. Dinh Hoai has since returned to Hanoi University of Agriculture, Vietnam, to resume his position as Lecturer. His assessors commented: "This is a very elegant and clear set of laboratory experiments that focus on an important issue in aquaculture. The experiments were sound, the methods robust, and the conclusions very wide-reaching and important for this field." Congratulations Dinh Hoai! Come back soon, we miss you!

Congratulations to Alejandro Trujillo for his magnificent entry in the festival of Life Sciences Photo Competition of this image of a monogenean attached to its host. However, Alejandro was pipped to the post by an entry submitted by his co-supervisor, Dr Constantin Constantinoiu from the School of Veterinary Sciences!

September 2012

Congratulations to Thane Militz who was awarded a High Distinction for his Honours thesis: "Efficacy of garlic (Allium sativum) extract for management of a marine monogenean ectoparasite in aquaculture." His assessors commented: "This honours thesis is an outstanding piece of work and falls within the top 5% of those I have marked. The thesis was meticulously conducted and the writing of a high standard." Thane recently submitted his first manuscript to a scientific journal and we look forward to seeing his work in print! The Marine Parasitology Laboratory also learned that Thane was a recipient of a University medal for excellent academic achievement in his Bachelor of Science coursework studies undertaken at undergraduate level. This is a prestigious award and we congratulate Thane on this outstanding achievement.

Congratulations to Kate Hutson who won the "My Research in 3 minutes" James Cook University competition in the Early Career Researcher category. She also took out the People's Choice Award! To listen to Kate's presentation as featured on ABC North Radio, click here.

Congratulations also to Sarah Catalano (UA) who won the People's Choice Award for the University of Adelaide Competition (pictured with Deputy Vice Chancellor Prof Mike Brooks and Dr Paul Willis). Sarah won travel funds for her prize but has rejected offers to visit the JCU laboratory and use her cheque towards lab bench fees! Sarah also recently featured in the children's television show Scope on Channel 10. To see the segment and to find out why Sarah gets excited about parasites that feast on cuttlefish wee, click here. (see episode 2/3, 13/9/12)

August 2012

Kate has commenced a consultancy contract with DigsFish Services to work on fish and crab health surveys as part of port developments in Darwin Harbour, Northern Territory. To read more about the project see the Research Projects page.

Jess Rostagno (left) and Amy Foulkes (right) have just begun their research projects in the Marine Parasitology Laborotory. Jess will examine whether tropical cleaner fish can control ectoparasites in aquaculture while Amy will use morphological and molecular techniques to aid blood fluke diagnostics in wild green sea turtles.

Brian Saunders has released the second edition of ‘Shores and Shallows of Coffin Bay.' We are particularly thrilled with the expanded fish parasitology section. This new edition of the guide includes well over 700 photographs of the marine animals and plants of Coffin Bay, South Australia, together with their habitats. Brief notes on biology and ecology accompany the illustrations. The book is section sewn, measures 24 cm x 16.5 cm and contains 224 pages. For more information, or to purchase your own copy, please click here

July 2012

The James Cook University (JCU) and University of Adelaide (UA) members of their respective Marine Parasitology Laboratory, thoroughly enjoyed the scientific and social aspects of the Australian Society for Parasitology conference in Launceston, Tasmania. From left to right: PhD student Sarah Catalano (UA) received an honourable mention for her oral presentation on dycemid parasites of cephalopods. Masters student Dinh Hoai Truong (JCU) delivered a superb oral-poster presentation on the reproductive strategies of Neobenedenia. Kate Hutson (JCU) presented a parasite risk analysis for mariculture of barramundi and mulloway and ran the student breakfast workshop with tips on how to network during and after conferences. Masters student Alejandro Trujillo Gonzalez (JCU) received an honourable mention for his presentation on biological controls of mosquitoes. PhD student Alexander Brazenor (JCU; also pictured right) gave an excellent presentation on the effect of temperature and salinity on the life cycle of Neobendenia sp. infecting barramundi (Lates calcarifer). Ian Whittington (UA) dazzled audiences with some neat video footage of Neobenedenia he took while visiting the JCU lab last year.

Meanwhile, back in the lab, Honours student Thane Militz successfully submitted his Honours thesis on the efficacy of garlic as a control against ectoparasite infections. Congratulations Thane

June 2012

Kate won an internal competitive JCU Collaboration across Boundaries grant to work with Jairo Posada (ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies) and Constantin Constantinoiu (School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences). The grant will facilitate new Masters of Applied Science student Alejandro Trujillo Gonzalez's (pictured) research project investigating the pathology and immune response of fishes to ectoparasite infections and Alex's PhD research project on Neobenedenia infections in wild and farmed fishes.

May 2012

We are excited to announce the release of ‘Discovery of Australia's Fishes' by Brian Saunders. Brian contributes to our research programme through his excellent fish identification skills and stunning photography skills. His new book traces the discovery of Australia's fishes from the earliest days of taxonomy to the first part of the 20th century. It provides a unique insight into the diverse pathways by which Australia's fish were discovered and outlines the history of early maritime explorations in Australia that collected natural history specimens. The book covers the life and work of each of the most important discoverers, and assesses their accomplishments and the limitations of their work. To purchase a copy click here

April 2012

Postcards from Carnarvon Gorge, Queensland.

March 2012

The Marine Parasitology Laboratory is delighted to host Professor Ken Cain from the University of Idaho. Ken was like a fish to water in the tropics... we last saw him basking on a rock in the sunshine in Paluma National Park..

February 2012

Welcome Masters Student Dinh Hoai Truong who is working on the reproductive biology of Neobenedenia sp. for his research project.

January 2012

Congratulations to Alex Brazenor on his first class Honours thesis. Alex has won an Australian Postgraduate Award and plans to continue in the Marine Parasitology Laboratory for his PhD. Everyone at the Marine Parasitology Laboratory (including Alex's friend he met in India) are looking forward to a new year of excitement and discovery in the lab.

November 2011

HAPPY BIRTHDAY Danny! Rumour has it that Danny Tang will celebrate a particular milestone this Friday (21 again, right Danny?)

Welcome Amy Foulkes, who plans to join the Marine Parasitology Laboratory at JCU for a minor project in 2012 investigating parasites of marine turtles. In the meantime, Amy plans to volunteer at the turtle hospital to assist with the care of stranded turtles over summer.

October 2011

Kate Hutson was one of ten recipients of a JCU Early Career Researcher Rising Stars Research Leadership Award. The award includes funding towards a new research project on blood fluke diagnostics in aquaculture fishes and professional development towards building her research leadership capacity.

September 2011

Thane has successfully infected clown fish in the laboratory with Cryptocarion irritans. Bring on the garlic!

August 2011

Welcome Jess Rostagno! Jess will start a Minor Research Project in the Marine Parasitology Laboratory in 2012. In the meantime she is volunteering on various research projects including a potential biological control for parasites.

Welcome Thane Militz! Thane is investigating the efficacy of garlic extract on protozoan parasites of ornamental fishes as part of his Honours research project. Thane officially starts his Honours in September. In the interim he is working as a casual research assistant in the laboratory as part of the Enhancing adaptive capacity for farming barramundi project.

July 2011

We warmly welcome Joint Investigator Ian Whittington (South Australia Museum/The University of Adelaide) to the tropics. Ian is making the most of the experimental Neobenedenia infection in the laboratory as well as attending the opera and chillaxing with fruitful dessert wines (nice beret Ian!).

We welcome Emeritus Professor Lesley Warner to the laboratory who has been dissecting northern bandicoots (Isoodon macrourus). The bandicoots were road kill collected by Kate Hutson in anticipation of Professor Warner's visit. The bandicoots were host to some interesting nematode fauna, but of course the one Lesley was most interested in was a female and both sexes are needed for identification. Lesley reckons 'At least with monogeneans you get both sexes in the one package'.

July has been a busy time for Marine Parasitology Laboratory members in South Australia and Queensland. Kate and Thane attended the First International Aquatic Animal Health Conference while Kate, Ian, Sarah and Alex went along to the Australian Soceity for Parasitology conference the following week. In between the conferences Kate and David Blair ran the Aquatic Parasitology Workshop (pictured) which had 36 participants and 18 presenters/demonstrators. We thank everyone for making the workshop such a huge sucess, especially the Australian Society for Parasitology who funded the event.

April 2011

Congratulations Alex! Alex won an Honours Research Support Grant from NCCARF (National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility - Marine Biodiversity and Resources). The funds will be used to support Alex's research project on copepod and monogenean infections in barramundi. Here is a recent photo of Alex helping out with a dugong necropsy at the JCU Veterinary School.

March 2011

A few days on and Alex's progeny is growing up! His copepod nauplii have moulted into the infective copepodite stage (pictured). Alex plans to examine the effect of temperature on time to maturity (following successful infection of juvenile barramundi).

Alex has successfully cultured his first progeny with more than 500 copepod hatchlings (= Nauplii Stage II larvae) in his laboratory experiments! They exhibit an uncanny resemblance to Boba Fett's spaceship, don't you reckon? Alex is looking forward to the next larval stage - the infective copepodite - where he will test infection success on some unsuspecting host fish.

The final report for our three year project on parasites of wild and farmed fishes is currently at the printers and will be available later this month through the FRDC and the National Library of Australia. A huge thank you to all involved in the project.

February 2011

Welcome Natalie Bool! Natalie completed her BSc with first class Honours at the University of Adelaide in 2006. Following epic adventures in Alaska and Maquarie Island, she is now discovering parasites in paradise! In her position as Research Associate, Natalie will facilitate the development of our current research projects on parasites of barramundi.

Welcome Alex Brazenor! Alex joins the Marine Parasitology Laboratory for his Honours research project, having recently completed his Bachelor of Science at James Cook Univeristy. He plans to investigate ectoparasite responses to varying temperature and salinity. This will aid development of strategic parasite management strategies as part of a larger research project on Enhancing adaptive capacity for farming barramundi

January 2011

Sarah Catalano's image of her favourite parasite, Argulus diversicolor, features on the cover of the current issue of Marine and Freshwater Research. You will also find Sarah's most recent publication 'The value of host and parasite identification for arripid fish' in the same issue. For more information about Argulus diversicolor check out our poster on Australian salmon sea lice

Congratulations to Emma Brock on her first published paper 'Spatial variation in parasite abundance: evidence of geographical population structuring in southern garfish Hyporhamphus melanochir' in the current issue of the Journal of Fish Biology!

December 2010

Ok, so he's not a marine parasite, but we love Captain Higgins

November 2010

Welcome Dr Tim Dempster (University of Melbourne) who is currently visiting the Marine Parasitology Laboratory at James Cook University to engage in collaborative research development.

Congratulations Emma Brock on receiving First Class Honours for your thesis! Emma's study examined King George whiting parasite communities with reference to fish age and capture location. Emma also discovered a new parasite species!

September 2010

Dr Kate Hutson featured on the children's science television show Scope on Australia's Channel Ten Network (25 September at 9am) as part of a special episode on parasites!

August 2010

Lookout during the International Congress of Parasitology in Melbourne (August 16th-20th): rumour has it there will be a few marine parasites about...

April 2010

Honours student Sarah Catalano graduated this month! Sarah successfully completed her thesis ‘Parasite assemblages of the Arripidae in southern Australia' with First Class Honours and has published two research papers from her thesis with another on the way! She secured an Australian Postgraduate Award to begin a PhD in July 2010. In the meantime, Sarah is working as a Research Assistant in the laboratory.

February 2010

Emma Brock (graduate from a Bachelor of Marine Biology) continues in the Marine Parasitology Laboratory at the University of Adelaide for her Honours project in 2010. An ABRS Capacity-Building Scholar, Emma is studying ontogenic influences on parasitism in King George whiting - already she has made some exciting discoveries. Stay tuned.

January 2010 has moved to tropical Queensland! Primary Investigator Dr Kate Hutson is now at James Cook University, Townsville, where she will continue working on parasites of fishes.

Marine parasites in southern Australian waters will continue to be a focal point of the research of Joint Investigator Assoc Prof Ian Whittington at the South Australian Museum. Together, we continue to support students at the University of Adelaide.

Kate's tropical sea change will bring more diversity to the website. She is looking forward to discovering plenty of worms in the tropics and establishing a new research group at JCU.

Farewell Elizabeth Perkins. Lizzie is now Station Assistant at Heron Island Research Station, Queensland! We wish her all the best in her new position.

November 2009

Thank you to Prof Ian Beveridge, who was instrumental in identifying the parasitic red mite (Dermanyssus) outbreak in Kate Hutson's pet chickens, although his suggested ‘kerosene and lighted match' treatment wasn't applied to the coop (or the chooks).

September 2009

Dr Kate Hutson spent August and September 2009 at the Natural History Museum, London, working with Prof Geoff Boxshall and Dr Rod Bray (Official Collborators) on copepods and digeneans, respectively

Farewell Dr Danny Tang! Danny (Official Collaborator) is leaving Australian shores to begin a postdoctoral position in Laboratory of Aquaculture , Hiroshima University, Japan. We wish him all the best in his new position.

Fifteen year old Field Volunteer ‘Dr Charlie' Walsh is off to Germany! Charlie was accepted in the Rotary Youth Exchange after being nominated by his local district committee (and an ensuing application and 2 hour interview). Good luck Charlie! We hope you come across many European fishes (and parasites!) in 2010.

Sarah Catalano continues to excel, winning third prize for outstanding academic achievement in Level III Environmental Biology courses in 2008.  Well done Sarah!

Sarah Catalano was awarded the Unibooks Scholarship for Honours 2009. She was selected according to academic merit, as determined by her cumulative grade point average achieved over preceding years of study. Only one scholarship is awarded to a University of Adelaide Honours student each year. Congratulations Sarah!

Honours student Sarah Catalano was awarded a Playford Memorial Honours Scholarship for her research on parasites of Australian endemic fishes. Congratulations Sarah!

Kate Hutson and Emma Brock will present their research work at the FRDC Aquatic Animal Health Scientific Conference, 22-24 July 2009, Cairns

Kate Hutson and Sarah Catalano will present their recent discoveries at ASP & ARC/NHMRC Research Network for Parasitology Annual Conference 12-15 July 2009 at The University of Sydney, New South Wales