Welcome to the SAIAB Library
As a National Facility of the National Research Foundation (NRF), SAIAB serves as a major scientific resource for knowledge and understanding the biodiversity and functioning of globally significant aquatic ecosystems. By virtue of its unique position with regard to both marine and freshwater biogeographical boundaries, southern Africa is ideally placed to monitor and document climate change.
From a marine perspective South Africa forms the southern apex of a major continental mass, flanked by very different marine ecosystems on the east and west coasts, and projecting towards the cold southern Ocean large marine ecosystem.
Latest on the blog
The Women and the Coelacanth
2013 marks the 75th anniversary of the finding of the living coelacanth in 1938. Without the women scientists involved, the story may never have happened
French and South African biologists conducted conducted esearch in deep-sea caves in the Sodwana Bay area during April 2013 in a bid to locate the coelacanth.
On the 5th April 2013 at 20h30, the diver and naturalist Lauret Ballesta, accompanied by a team of deep-sea divers, researchers from the South African Institute of Aquatic Biodiversity (SAIAB) and six scientists from the Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle (MNHN), the National Museum of Natural History in Paris, France, and from the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) (National Center for Scientific Research), left for South Africa for 40 days of diving to find a mythical animal: the coelecanth.
Known in that area as 'gombessa', this peaceful 2 m long giant, thought to be extinct for 70 million years and rediscovered alive in 1938, is considered the greatest zoological discovery of the twentieth century.
Coelacanth 75th Anniversary
DIFS/SAIAB Seminar Series
The next presentation in the DIFS/SAIAB Seminar Series will be by Brian Godfrey
Counting Rock Lobsters in Tristan da Cunha
The MV Oliva, a bulk carrier transporting a cargo of 65 000 tons of soya bean, ran aground at Nightingale Island (Tristan da Cunha) on 16 March 2011. The grounding resulted in the leakage of 1 500 tonnes of heavy fuel oils and diesel into the surrounding seas, and all cargo was lost when the vessel broke in half and sank on 18 March 2011. Divers from the Department of Ichthyology and Fisheries Science (DIFS), Rhodes University, were recruited to assess the potential effects of oil pollution on juvenile rock lobster.
Venue: Lecture Room, Department of Ichthyology & Fisheries Science (DIFS)
Date: Thursday, 24 October 2013
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