The Two Oceans Aquarium Foundation is offering a brand-new online course for adults and high-school learners, run by research manager, Dr Nathalie Viljoen. This course is an introduction to the biology, anatomy and physiology of marine fish and is well-suited for those with a deep interest in marine fish and how they work.
Fish are by far the most diverse group of vertebrates on our planet, with over 33 000 species of fish described and with an approximate 60/40 split between marine and freshwater species. Finned fish, in the superclass Pisces, include both sharks, rays, ratfish and bony fish – the group we are most familiar with and mostly see! Marine bony fish show an array of shape, form, colour and speed variation. Some have adapted to a wide range of salinities and temperatures, and others take care of young or spawn, or just leave once they have released their eggs or sperm. Come and learn all about fish and how we can help them sustain life in the hunting grounds!
This four-week course will start with the evolution of modern, ray-finned bony fish and external anatomy, especially when compared to cartilaginous fish. Week two will cover internal anatomy and senses, with a fish dissection. In the third week, the course will cover fish physiology and the life processes of marine and freshwater bony fish. And finally, the course will end off the with fish reproductive strategies, the threats that fish face, and an introduction to WWF SASSI.
The course will feature several guest speakers, all of whom are experts in the field of ichthyology.