Want to be involved? Looking for a cutting-edge postgraduate research project?
We are looking for enthusiastic students to join our team and build the knowledge that will help our reef grow, and future restoration projects succeed. These are unchartered waters for oyster restoration in Australia, so there are many questions to be answered!
Whether you are interested in field work, diving research, running laboratory experiments, or don’t want to get your hands wet at all, the diverse research opportunities cater for all student preferences.
Environmental benefits of oyster restoration
Evaluation of the environmental and economic benefits of a restored oyster reef is critical to the success of the Ardrossan restoration project. Oyster reefs provide a broad diversity of important ecosystem services, including: increasing regional biodiversity by providing habitat to numerous other animals, boosting the production of baby fish, and cleaning coastal waters via their filter-feeding of excess nutrients from the water column.
We are looking for a team of postgraduates to run research projects that quantify these numerous ecosystem services. Such research will help advocate for future restoration projects both in Australia and abroad.
Increasing the reef’s performance and climate resilience
To ensure the successful restoration of our native oysters we need to understand the complex life-history of oysters, and how each life-event will perform as our ocean changes. The world-leading aquarium facilities at The University of Adelaide allows researchers to simulate future ocean conditions so we can anticipate how these oysters will response to increasing temperature and ocean acidification. Understanding the important environmental cues that oyster spat use to choose their settlement location will allow us to not only maximise the recruitment of wild oyster spat, but also develop techniques to enhance the settlement signals over time.
Research projects can be tailored around laboratory and/or manipulative field experiments to develop our knowledge in this exciting field.
Artificial reef habitat units
Four different habitat units were specially designed for deployment with the Ardrossan oyster restoration. Produced by Reef Design Lab in Melbourne, these structures have been specifically designed to enhance the recruitment and survivorship of oysters on the reef. Artificial habitat creation is an ever-increasing technique for habitat restoration, and these organic designs are at the cutting edge of the movement.
We are looking for post-graduate students to lead the investigation of how these different designs influence the recruitment of biodiversity.
Working toward the success of the reef with our partners.