Research and projects

Previous Projects

Title: Diversification of Seaweed Industries in Pacific Island Countries

Funding Agency: Australian Center for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR).

Research Partner(s): James Cook University; Pacific Seaweeds; Fiji Fisheries Department; SPC

Summary: The project is to provide the technological basis for diversification and revitalization of seaweed industries in Pacific Island Countries.  IMR will specifically be involved in enhancing production and post-harvest strategies for seagrapes (Caulerpa racemosa) in Samoa and Fiji for domestic and export market.

Title: Rapid Identification of Tuna Trunks

Funding Agency: New Zealand Ministry of Primary Industries.

Research Partner(s): University of Sunshine Coast (USC)

Summary:  The project is designed to use new generation sequencing technologies combined with proteomics and monoclonal antibody designed against regions unique to each tuna species to develop a dipstick that would differentiate the different tuna species on site .

Title: Monitoring and understanding fisheries practices in the Dawasamu district of Fiji to build a sustainable ecosystem-based management plan.

Funding Agency: The Waterloo Foundation

Research Partner(s): Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC); Dawasamu Environment Movement (DEM)

Summary:  This project aims to develop an Ecosystem-Based Management (EBM) plan for the Dawasamu district.  WDC, IMR and DEM have identified the need and benefit of establishing a wider ecosystem-based management (EBM) plan for the entire Dawasamu qoliqoli.  Thus a 2-year project is now initiated to:  (i) provide relevant scientific data and information on fish catch and use within the Dawasamu qoliqoli, (ii) strategically engage and consult with the Dawasamu community and local stakeholders to develop a EBM plan, and (iii) provide valuable capacity building and awareness raising opportunities for both local villagers as well as a regional or national post-graduate student.

Title: Metapopulation dynamics, socio-economics and fisheries science of the albacore tuna (Thunnus alalunga), with particular emphasis on the Fijian tuna industry.

Funding Agency: University of the South Pacific

Research Partner(s): Institute of Fundamental Science, Massey University; School of Marine Studies and School of Biological & Chemical Sciences, USP.

Summary: This project will provide information regarding the stock structure of albacore tuna caught in Fiji (genomics), the relative value of distant water and local fishing fleets to the local economy (socio-economics),a better understanding of the ‘Fiji’ stock of albacore tuna and its value to the local ecosystem and an insight into the fisheries impact on unwanted species or on undersized of the target species (fisheries science and conservation biology).

Title: Evolutionary ecogenomics and conservation of scalloped hammerhead sharks in the WCPO: implications for the assessment of Non-Detrimental Findings under CITES regulations.

Funding Agency: University of the South Pacific

Research Partner(s):  Molecular Fisheries Laboratory, QLD Australia; School of Marine Studies and School of Biological & Chemical Sciences, USP.

Summary: Hammerhead stocks is a priority identified in the last Regional Workshop on the Implementation of CITES Appendix II Shark Listings. Thus the primary goal of this research program is to test the general hypothesis that the SHS populations follow a metapopulation dynamics model with clearly differentiated management and evolutionary significant units focusing on their adaptive divergence and connectivity.

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