Nemo can smell when coral is bleached

FINDING RESULTS: Dr Anna Scott and Dr Danielle Dixson are studying whether clownfish (in text) can detect coral bleaching.
FINDING RESULTS: Dr Anna Scott and Dr Danielle Dixson are studying whether clownfish (in text) can detect coral bleaching. Contributed

IN THE wake of increasing coral bleaching events, a new study shows clownfish can distinguish if their anemone habitat is bleached or healthy through smell.

The research paper, co-authored by Southern Cross University's Dr Anna Scott and Danielle Dixson, from the University of Delaware, also said the iconic fish are inflexible when it comes to selecting other anemone species as habitat.

Dr Scott, who is based at the university's National Marine Science Centre, said clownfish were behaviourally linked to one or a few anemone species, meaning bleaching events were likely to impact their populations.


Bleached host sea anemone with resident Clown fish
Bleached host sea anemone with resident Clown fish J Stella

"Understanding the negative impacts of declining habitat quality on these species is crucial, given that bleaching events are becoming increasingly common," Dr Scott said.

"Not only are these species iconic, but they are also ecologically important and there are real risks to species survival if bleaching events continue to increase in frequency and severity."

The study tested five clownfish species and three host sea anemones to determine if they could smell the presence of bleaching anemones.

The fish were individually placed in an experimental chamber containing two streams of water flowing at identical rates but containing different chemical cues.

Topics:  coffs coast marine science national marine science centre southern cross university

A rock 'n' roll band with plenty of ability

THE RED HOTS: Drummer Marc, guitarist Gil Morgan, singer Renee, Scott on harmonica and bassist Rod. Absent: Ashlea on tambourine. Coffs Harbour, June 28, 2017.

Coffs band has a message to play loud and clear

What's for dinner Wednesday?

Need help in the kitchen?

What's cooking at your house tonight? Care to share?

Raising baby sea urchins for export

Sea urchin research taps into Japanese export market. Symon Dworjanyn and Luke Hartsuyker.

Three year project to improve production of commercial sea urchins.

Local Partners

Numbers add up for students

Eight of St John Paul College's finest mathematicians travelled by minibus to UNE Armidale to participate in the Year 8 Mathematics Day.

Challenge for cyclists of all levels and ages

This year's C.ex McDonald's Cycle Challenge is being held on Sunday, August 6. You can ride in the the 10km family ride, 20km, 40km, 60km, or the 100km challenge.

This year's cycle challenge is being held on Sunday, August 6.

New developments announced for Curryfest

TASTE TREATS: New developments for Curryfest 2017.

Fresh ideas and developments show no sign of slowing down.

Bundy mum blogging to get families offline

FAMILY FUN: Deonie Crowther is holding family craft sessions at the Windmill Cafe in Bargara.

Crafty projects a hit with parents and children

Game of Thrones: Crucial details you probably forgot

IT’S been a while since we’ve been to Westeros. But there are some crucial story points you need to remember before we head back there for season seven.

There's a bear in there

Big Ted and the gang are coming to town

July Bollywood Markets bring food and fun

FUN FAIR: The next Bollywood Beach Market is on July 1.

THE colour, the sights, the aromas, the joyful vibe.

Pregnant Serena Williams nude on cover of Vanity Fair

"My heart dropped. Like literally it dropped,”

Watch the game at Woopi C.ex

BARNSTORMING: Andrew Fifita of the NSW Blues.

Origin decider at C.ex Woolgoolga

Where is the newest property hotspot?

New apartment development being snapped up by locals.

Island caretaker has weeks to live, abandons paradise

St Bees managing director Phil Webb, has been struck with illness and it has prompted the sale of the island.

His health has deteriorated in the past couple of months

Prime CBD site sold as laneway culture progresses

The Longs building Ruthven Street has been purchased by a group of investors to be renovated into a series of shops/eateries.  June 2017

How investors and council plan to transform the Toowoomba CBD

House build hits the spot

Owner Libby Parish from Thora commissioned licensed builder Cormac McMullan, of Cormac & Co to build her a two bedroom, one bathroom house with a skillion roof.

Is this the answer to affordable housing on the Coffs Coast?

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!