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Marine Biology

 Active research in African marine ichthyology includes food and feeding ecology of fish, as well as focused research on various species of sharks. Structured community participation is used to gain valuable information for this project.

The Otolith Collection comprises more than 20 300 specimens of ear-bones removed from marine bony fishes. These distinct bones are used to identify the fish prey of marine predators including dolphins, seals, gannets and sharks. Most specimens have been collected from the Western Indian Ocean. Many of the fish from which the otoliths have been removed are lodged in the collection at the South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity (SAIAB) in Grahamstown. They are termed voucher specimens.

The Squid Beak Collection comprises more than 1 400 specimens. These mouth parts of octopus and squid species have been collected mainly from the Atlantic, Indian and Southern Oceans. They are used in the identification of prey species of marine mammals and other predators.



Honorary Curator Emeritus

Dr Malcolm Smale

Marine Biology

Marine Biology