Christine works with samples from sharks all over the world. Using genetic techniques she can answer questions about the health of specific shark populations, and establish relationships between shark litters and their parents.
My fascination with biology started when I was a young girl. My father, a nuclear physicist, was gardening one spring day and struck and killed a mole. Not wanting to waste an educational opportunity, he brought the mole into the garage and dissected it for my younger brother and me. I was immediately curious about how all the organs worked and wanted to know more. My first ‘scientific’ studies started a few years later when I began colour-breeding experiments with mice. We lived in Minnesota, USA, far from any oceans, so my parents did not have to put up with...
John is developing a set of targeted ‘capture panels’ that focus DNA sequencing efforts on specific regions of the cownose ray genome that can be used to identify related individuals. These panels will facilitate construction of a close-kin mark-recapture model to estimate abundance of cownose rays along the US East Coast.
To find out which shark species occur in Puerto Rican waters, Glorimar is using genetics and getting samples from fish markets. She also relies on the assistance of local fishers. Filling this fundamental knowledge gap will help to assess local consumption of sharks and build up the community’s understanding of how sharks function in the marine ecosystem.
To really understand how vulnerable sharks are to fishing in localised areas, we need to know the genetic variation across large areas. Dominic is investigating this in blacktip sharks, one of the dominant shark species caught in US Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico fisheries, to understand population connectivity across the Caribbean Sea and between these regions.