Reef fish research help

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Post  wazungu on 13th August 2012, 10:01 pm

Hi Brisbane collectors! Jack Randall and I are working on porcupinefish research and we need some help from you guys- (if you can help, you'll be gratefully cited in our next paper). We need a DNA sample from your local freckled porcupinefish. No need to kill the fish, we just need a snip of the fin the size of a fingernail in a vial of alcohol, 90% ethanol is best, but high concn rubbing alcohol works too. Hopefully someone is interested in marine biology research in your group? we would be super grateful...

Benjamin Victor


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Post  liquidg on 14th August 2012, 6:27 am

wazungu wrote:
Hopefully someone is interested in marine biology research in your group!


Just saw your thread further down.

What a strange thing to type Benjamin!!!

Mate just because we collect our own aquarium species and use the ocean, as in spear fishing and standard fishing, does not exclude us from being very pro and I mean very pro directed at logical marine research on any part of the worlds oceans, including brackish eco systems.

The puffer you speak of or as many call-bloat-lol,do you mean the diodon holocanthus?

Mate we need to know in what way this is to be handled because if this is the one you are interested in, there is a particular reef where there can be 2 per 3 metres of space at times where they can be found.

Of late itís a bit cold so it may not happen straight away, maybe next week, one of us will help for sure.

We need to cheek on this type of thing put in the mail though.

We could stop off there on a trip if need be, they are around other sites of course, but with this one, its jump and done in minutes.

That would be funny if you mentioned the aandtsociety any where here in Auz,as you most likely well know the shops run the net and except for us and (Queensland aquarium forum) here in Auz there is a great deal of monetary control on forums, especially the larger forums.

Our collecting trips are for our own aquarium species, sure,but not just to save money ,with some of us there is a great deal of understanding regarding the ocean, it is hands on knowledge more than anything else and some times is not that easy to express in terms that will be perceived as knowledgeable!

We swap with each other and this is a swap for the better understanding of a fish, if itís the one I named, we see them regularly, so that seems fair that we help in some way.

I just saw your link on reef central,top site that one,beats the big ones in Auz hands down!!!!

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Its up to you.
cheers

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Reef fish research help Empty Freckled porcupines, Diodon holocanthus

Post  wazungu on 15th August 2012, 10:41 pm

Hi liquidg.. didn't quite mean that sentence that way- how about "Hopefully someone is interested in doing some marine biology research!", wouldn't imply no one is interested in marine research... maybe it is the different brands of English we all speak... here in USA we tentatively suggest hopefully someone is interested in something.. even if we know they are, to let them out of an obligation, maybe to be polite?? sounds sort of wussy, I guess... anyways, you can see I am over-analytical...

We would really appreciate it- we have samples from all over the world, but having a difficult time with SE Australia- we have some fish coming to us from the Australian Museum, but all are in formalin, which ruins DNA.

Yes, no damage needed to the fish, a snip from a fin, maybe from two or three fish if they are common and easy to catch (but one is great). Would be nice to have a photo to make sure they are very freckled (the ones everywhere else have many fewer and larger spots).

Best to put the clip into alcohol right away and on ice (assuming everyone carries loads of icy beers- at least that is what we hear about Aussies). Then after a week or so, there is no need to mail off the liquid, just put the wet clip in three or four ziplocs inside each other and it should stay wet. We mail things around in a magazine in the envelope- if one says "DNA samples" or wildlife or fish or whatever, the mail gets sent off to bureacratic never-never land somewhere, if you say used book or magazine, value $1, no one cares... you can use my Fedex account number if Fedex is convenient in AUZ.

I hear they make it hard to buy high percentage ethanol in AUZ (over 50%), worried people will drink it. The chemist shop should have 99% isopropyl, in a pinch the 65% or so would work, especially if it is changed out a couple times and the fin is kept in the fridge maybe.

Ben


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Post  liquidg on 17th August 2012, 3:42 am

Mate I was just speaking to Jeff Johnson at the Q museum and for us to do that is quite illegal!

I get enough crap from the sandbox lot,i don't need any more.

So I have arranged with the museum that if and when we find some of what you want I will drop it off to him at the museum and you can get it that way as they have the permits to get it to you.

The DNA will be protected and in good nick.

I will zap in on the motor bike and drop them or it off, nice ride in to south bank.

I told Jeff we will get a couple of pics of these in their habitat as well before collection if you want them.

cheers

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Post  finfan on 17th August 2012, 5:35 am

liquidg wrote:Mate I was just speaking to Jeff Johnson at the Q museum and for us to do that is quite illegal!

I get enough crap from the sandbox lot,i don't need any more.

So I have arranged with the museum that if and when we find some of what you want I will drop it off to him at the museum and you can get it that way as they have the permits to get it to you.

The DNA will be protected and in good nick.

I will zap in on the motor bike and drop them or it off, nice ride in to south bank.

I told Jeff we will get a couple of pics of these in their habitat as well before collection if you want them.

cheers

Love ya work Liquidg - respect mate.... afro

Cool

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Post  wazungu on 21st August 2012, 10:00 pm

Wow- you guys are seriously tangled in laws there- i.e. without even taking the fish, it is still illegal? there is actually a law about sending a fragment of a fish... meanwhile the export of thousands of tons of fish pillaged from the reefs goes on unabated... Outside of Australia, people mail fish to us and the museums all the time- the less connected to academics, the easier, since they don't have local institutional rules.

nevertheless, good idea, I am sure Jeff will want to help us, especially the venerable Jack Randall- who wrote the books we all use.

We had tried the Australian Museum, and they are sending some larvae they have, but when queried about divers or aquarium collectors, the answer was, verbatim: "Sorry, we have no contacts with anyone in the aquarium fish trade or local collectors"

I will contact Jeff Johnson. Thanks much!

PS what does the "sandbox" mean?

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Post  liquidg on 22nd August 2012, 3:10 am

I wish I had seen this earlier this morning,I just got back from getting a couple of sponges for my new reef tank and found several puffers and had one in the bucket but got sick of carrying around.

I had not heard back so I thought maybe the way we had to do it if it happened was too much of a pain in the neck.

With the sand box thing.

Here In Auz we have a group on the net that gives myself and some recreational collectors and quite often any one who does not go along with their ways some grief, the sand box wording means they are like children playing in a sand box compared to the quality of and information from reef central.

From interactions in the past, I have found a large part are just opinions and disorders.

Needless to say there is no love lost there,lol.

The collecting side of it has been let down by some idiots over the years that do the wrong thing and boast of it labelling most of us in a not so good way.

That has not helped recreational collecting and I have been amongst most forms of collecting for over 30 years here in SEQ, I used to work with commercial collectors in the distant past, now that was educational!

A lot of people I have met or spoken to of some educated in marine sciences and the governing bodies responsible for maintaining our oceans quality, appear at times to need some serious mental help and need to get away from focusing on what is not overly harming our oceans longevity and stop just seeing the little picture.

At the moment we have had out winter ocean temps only get down to around 18c and they are still looking at over fishing, anchor damage and general over use of the ocean!

These people are idiots!

Up until around 15 years back the winter water temps each season,even on the outer reefs off here use to get down to 15c Ė16c that hasnít happened in 10 to 15 years.

Its so disappointing and very sad when I hear of these idiots worrying about these changeable issues with something as simple as maybe the use of reef rotation as one example, while sediment,changing temps,changing currents are having slow but huge impacts on our ocean,these will take hundreds of years to comeback from if they ever try to fix it!

I am not surprised you get interesting responses in relation to any collecting marine life.

With all uses of the oceans, they have to be regulated in ways that make sense,thatís a given and green zones here and there are very important to allow for planktonic repopulating of reefs near by and down stream, but it is very easy to blame these types of actions for everything and lets face it, no one wants to see nemo collected.

The problem is if his ocean cannot sustain its kind any more and he dies out there, they didnít see that so it didnít happen and if he does disappear and its noticed, it was the collectors that did it,lol.

As the marine conservation society replied back to me once when I asked them what they were trying to do about these issues when the marine parks here were being discussed, (thatís in the to hard basket),so they are pushing to conserve whatís here, is it that hard to realise that whatís here wonít last if the waters are not conducive to those life forms any more!

We find dead corals all the time that are not found alive here any more due to changing conditions, not collected, just dead!!

Our ways to do our bit on collecting trips,are to leave the habitat as we found it, thatís paramount, also only take 3 of the five things there as an example, though our recreational collecting is legal, we never show or say where we get anything and never show our collection while at a site, we canít afford to,others not collecting a responsible manner will know of these spots then and to many illogical supposedly green minded idiots that have no idea will form an uneducated opinion on our activities.

Sorry mate,I am very passionate about the ocean and its lovely life forms.

Jeff from the museum wants the puffers intact to help with this, so now I know this is to happen, we will just get a couple and pass them on any way so this is done.

Hopefully over the next week or so, you see the tides are out of wack from now on for a week or so and I donít have much room in my tubs at the moment for the puffers, so get in touch with Jeff Johnson and I will call him when either I or another one of our guys has a couple.

I bet the weather goes bad now,lol.

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Post  wazungu on 23rd August 2012, 11:15 pm

I sympathize- there is a disease that reasonable people get when "put in charge" of others- they start to get stubborn and controlling and throw rationality out the window... the typical example is making a big issue over something small while something large that they do not control is going on. the best phrase for it is "rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic"..

A typical example is microregulating scientific collecting while the reefs and fisheries are collapsing, due to stuff they have little power or urge to control like development, runoff, climate change, population explosion, illegal fishing etc. etc. In the Galapagos, for example, there are superstrict rules on collecting, but, at the same time illegal trawling (!!!!!) and gillnetting is rampant. So I cannot collect a fish but as our boat approaches the island, two trawlers pull up their nets and speed away.

Any surprise I often do not fill out the paperwork?

Well, next time a couple porcupines get in your nets, yes, please deliver to the museum. i will e-mail them now. Thanks!

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Post  liquidg on 26th August 2012, 12:16 pm

These are in the tubs now.

Are they suitable?

I will get onto Jeff at the museum and drop them off this week.

The small one.

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The larger one.

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Last edited by liquidg on 27th August 2012, 6:44 am; edited 1 time in total

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Reef fish research help Empty perfect! thanks much!!

Post  wazungu on 26th August 2012, 11:08 pm

Thanks! I e-mailed Jack Randall that Jeff Johnson was going to ship them, and he apparently knows him and just wrote a paper with him describing a new little flatfish from the rivers around there... so Jeff should be on board (and keep everything legal). For your help how woudl you like to be acknowledged? you can e-mail to me at ben at coralreeffish dot com..

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Post  wazungu on 26th August 2012, 11:10 pm

when you say tubes, do you mean you took a fin clip and released them? what did you use for alcohol?

Hopefully it all works, but if it doesn't sequence (for who knows what reason), maybe you could give Jeff the whole fish- I am sure the museum is interested in them (especially if we make them a different species!).

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Post  liquidg on 27th August 2012, 6:43 am

When i spoke to Jeff the other day, he said its best to bring in the whole fish,so I got them alive and they are in the tubs until I take in.

I use several in line plastic storage tubs over flowing to each other of non-toxic plastics for my areas supported by my old bio system of 15 years matured now,to sort of experiment with things,algae mainly and the on going changes of my indemic dotty back, there is more I use them for, in fact my complete bio NWMSystem is made up of plastic tubs that runs my two reef tanks.

Thatís what the tubs are, plastic fish tanks!.

I called Jeff this morning and had a talk to him; I will drop both of the whole fish off to him in the morning, that is if it doesnít rain, any way they will be there in the next two days.

If you don't mind, regarding the help with this, just the ( aandtsociety.org.au ) as a reference to any assistance on this and we are glad to help mate.

If you need anything else, it can be done in the same way, Jeff at the museum isnít just a knowledgeable bloke; he has always been helpful to me and if he didnít know it, he would put me onto others in the fields I would be looking at since he started at the museum.

He put me onto the marine biologist years back that gave me the help and reassurance as to my findings and the help I needed to get me started to where I am now with the use of algae!

Good luck with it all.

cheers


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Post  wazungu on 27th August 2012, 10:51 pm

super- it is best to have the whole fish.. we will be separating it as a distinct endemic species for your coast. Thanks especially- we ichthyologists often neglect the hobbyists, but you guys do know the habitat well and can get into the field more effectively than many museum types.

I pointed out the different looking freckled guys to Jack Randall from photos on the web and he said, wow, how come they didn't notice that... especially since the expert on the group is down at the Australian Museum.. but he hadn't noticed anything unusual. Jack is convinced it is different, and, in the tropical marine fish world, what Jack Randall says, goes. I am writing the book on shorefishes of the Caribbean with him, not at all an expert on Indo-Pacifics myself.

Will keep you posted on progress.. thanks again!

Ben

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Post  wazungu on 9th September 2012, 12:58 am

I haven't heard back from Jeff- are the fish over there? I will try him again...

Ben

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Post  liquidg on 9th September 2012, 2:46 am

Its been just over two weeks now since i dropped them off and called him that arvo and he was already soughting them out.

He gets a lot of emails,try calling him by phone,that's what i normally do.

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Post  wazungu on 10th September 2012, 12:45 am

great, i will actually set Jack Randall on him-- no-one leaves his e-mails unanswered...

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Post  liquidg on 10th September 2012, 9:36 am

Just called him and he is off sick for a couple of days,I will PM you his email address.

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Post  wazungu on 11th September 2012, 10:13 pm

I have his e-mail- he has written papers with my coauthor Jack Randall. thanks again..

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