Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Student looks into impact of ‘seabird wreck’

Student looks into impact of ‘seabird wreck’

22 October 2013

UQ Bachelor of Environmental Management student Elizabeth Crotty.A student from The University of Queensland has been analysing a collection of almost nine hundred dead whalebirds, which were marooned on New Zealand's west coasts after a storm in 2011 killed hundreds of thousands of them.

Elizabeth Crotty is completing a three-month placement in Wellington, at the research centre at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, as part of her Bachelor of Environmental Management.

She has been studying prions, otherwise known as whalebirds. There are six different species of the small, blue-grey petrels, which spend the majority of their lives on the open ocean.

“It's not uncommon for a few dead birds to wash up on New Zealand's shore after stormy weather, but the huge number of whalebirds killed in this storm was unusual,” Ms Crotty said.

“Seabirds in general live a long time and have a low reproductive output, so populations are highly sensitive to changes in adult survival,” she said.

“The information I have collected will help us to understand which species of whalebird died during the storm and how their remaining populations might be affected by the losses.”

While juvenile mortality is a normal occurrence, the loss of breeding adults could have significant effects.

“When I first arrived in July and saw the number of birds to analyse I was overwhelmed,” Ms Crotty said.

“The priority of this project is to gain demographic information from the birds that died, however I am also extracting the tongue for genetic analysis, and collecting digestive tracts which will be examined to assess presence of ingested plastics.”

Te Papa will open its research centre to the world on Tuesday 22 October 2013 with a live YouTube stream from one of its laboratories.

Six scientists working at Te Papa, including Ms Crotty, will share the work they have been doing and explain what they hope to learn from studying these birds.
ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

SOE Results: TVNZ Lifts Annual Profit 25% On Flat Ad Revenue, Quits Igloo

Television New Zealand, the state-owned broadcaster, lifted annual profit 25 percent, ahead of forecast and despite a dip in advertising revenue, while quitting its stake in the pay-TV Igloo joint venture with Sky Network Television. More>>

ALSO:

Insurers Up For More Payouts: Chch Property Investor Wins Policy Appeal In Supreme Court

Ridgecrest NZ, a property investor, has won an appeal in the Supreme Court over insurance cover provided by IAG New Zealand for a Christchurch building damaged in four successive earthquakes. More>>

ALSO:

Other Cases:

Royal Society: Review Finds Community Water Fluoridation Safe And Effective

A review of the scientific evidence for and against the efficacy and safety of fluoridation of public water supplies has found that the levels of fluoridation used in New Zealand create no health risks and provide protection against tooth decay. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Croxley Calls Time On NZ Production In Face Of Cheap Imports

Croxley Stationery, whose stationery brands include Olympic, Warwick and Collins, plans to cease manufacturing in New Zealand because it has struggled to compete with lower-cost imports in a market where the printed word is giving way to electronic communications. More>>

ALSO:

Prefu Roundup: Forecasts Revised, Surplus Intact

The National government heads into the election with its Budget surplus target broadly intact, delivering a set of economic and fiscal forecasts marginally revised from May to reflect weaker commodity prices and a lower tax take. More>>

ALSO:

Convention Centre: Major New SkyCity Hotel And Laneway For Auckland

Today SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited revealed plans to build a new hotel and pedestrian laneway of bars, restaurants and boutique shopping on land it owns in the Nelson and Hobson Streets block, expanding the SKYCITY Entertainment Precinct. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news