Octopus pair at Lizard Island

Octopus pair at Lizard Island

On our last expedition to Jiigurru (Lizard Island), we were fortunate enough to witness a pair of Reef Octopus (Octopus cyanea) out actively hunting and copulating in the late afternoon at Watson’s Bay, with very little concern about our presence. The larger...
The next Crown-of-Thorns Starfish outbreak is coming

The next Crown-of-Thorns Starfish outbreak is coming

Crown-of-Thorns Starfish (COTS) are natural members of coral reef communities and their numbers erupt periodically into outbreaks. Adult starfish – which can reach more than 50 cm diameter – eat the living tissue of corals. When outbreaks occur, COTS consume...
2022 Critical Research Grant awarded

2022 Critical Research Grant awarded

The 2022 Lizard Island Critical Research Grant has been awarded to Prof. Andrew Baird of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University and colleagues from the Museum of Tropical Queensland and University of Hawai’i at Manoa. The project,...
How many coral species exist at Lizard Island?

How many coral species exist at Lizard Island?

That apparently simple question is not so easy to answer. Not only are corals notoriously difficult to identify to species, the mixture of species within a local community can change over time, rare species are easily overlooked, and even the concept of a species can...
Marine pollution research

Marine pollution research

For nearly two decades, Manoela Romano de Orte has been studying the double-barreled menace of pollution and climate change that puts coral reefs in the firing line. As a recent graduate in Brazil in 2004, Manoela was looking for a research topic for a higher degree...