Friday, October 22, 2010

Paid for Pipefish

I went to St Kilda pier today to collect pipefishes for research. The seagrass beds are teaming with these seahorse relatives. And, like seahorses, it's the male pipefishes that undergo 'pregnancy' and give birth. We were collecting them for a genetic study. It was a beautiful day for fieldwork: sunny, warm. However, as is typical with any kind of fieldwork in the city, people get very curious about what we were doing and soon gathered around our nets asking questions.

Curious bystander: "Are they garfish?"
Me: "No. They're pipefish."
Curious bystander: "Are you going to eat them?"
Me: "No. We're doing research on them"
Curious bystander: "Do you actually get paid for this?"
Me: "Absolutely."
Curious bystander: "Wow."


Andrew said...

Do they taste good?

Adaptive Radiation said...

Hmmm...good question. Some pipefishes are used in traditional chinese medicines.

Tou can always run down to the pier and gbring some home to try ;-)

Ann O'Dyne said... has a photo of Seaford beach starfish today

Cazzie!!! said...

So awesome! I want to do that... hang on, we do do that. My Mia found a seahorse and caught it. She let it go very carefuly too.. we were so excited to have found one. Not sure the sex of the cute little thing.