Sponge Sampling at ReefCI

Sponge Sampling at ReefCI

ReefCI were delighted to host PhD student Sarah Griffiths for a week on Tom Owens. Sarah, studying at Manchester University, was collecting sponge samples for her research in ecological genetics. Sarah, assisted by the ReefCI team, was on the lookout for sponges commonly known as Loggerhead, Vase and Orange Ball and said she found a "Goldmine of sponges on Tom Owens!" Her research uses genetic techniques to address ecological questions about sponge populations and their ecosystems, with the aim of generating useful conservation and management information. Using a combination of snorkeling and diving Sarah collected over 80 small tissue samples in order to extract and sequence the DNA.