- BSc (Honours) Marine Biology, 2013-2017. The University of Queensland
Exploring the diversity of metazoan parasites exploiting damselfishes on coral reefs
The Pomacentridae (damselfishes) are a diverse group of colourful fishes that are incredibly abundant on coral reefs. Despite making up much of the reef’s inhabitants, their parasitic fauna is comparatively understudied. The most recent comprehensive study on the trematodes of damselfish was conducted in the 90s! This study, and the few new records since, have shown that this group can be infected by a wide range of trematode families including the Lecithasteridae, Lepocreadiidae, Derogenidae, and less often the Bivesiculidae and Zoogonidae.
My project will build upon our current understanding of this fauna and will involve surveying damselfish from the east coast of Australia, from locations such as Heron Island and Lizard Island, on the Great Barrier Reef, to Moreton Bay in southeast Queensland. My primary aims are to characterise the trematode fauna of damselfish, potentially discover new trematode-host associations and address any systematic problems that currently exist for the pomacentrid-trematode fauna. In addition to trematodes, I will also document any other parasites infecting damselfish, such as monogeneans and copepods. Altogether, my research will provide a better understanding of the biodiversity of parasites that infect the Pomacentridae.
My research is supported by the School of Biological Sciences and the Graduate School at the University of Queensland.
Duong, B, Blomberg, SP, Cribb, TH, Cowman, PF, Kuris, AM, McCormick, MI, Warner, RR, Sun, D, and Grutter, AS (2019). Parasites of coral reef fish larvae: its role in the pelagic larval stage. Coral Reefs 38: 199–214.