Tag Archives: Murdoch University

More wheat, less water

China and Australia can dramatically boost wheat yields and improve food security by unlocking the genetic potential within the hundreds of wheat varieties grown in the two countries. That’s the promise of the latest collaboration between wheat researchers in the two countries.

Chinese farmers have been growing wheat for at least 4,000 years. Crop yields per hectare are now nearly 10 times higher than in 1960 and China is now the largest wheat producer in the world. But wheat researchers say we can do more.

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Mobile games are for paws, too

It turns out that Aussie pets love playing mobile games and watching TV,  just as we do.

In a three-year study of mobile gaming and digital media in Australian households, researchers were surprised to find animals frequently joining in on the fun with technology.

“We have observed cats playing with iPads and keyboards, dogs watching television or participating in Skype calls,” says Distinguished Professor Larissa Hjorth, Director of the Enabling Capability Platform for Design and Creative Practice at RMIT.

She co-leads the research with Associate Professor Ingrid Richardson from Murdoch University. Continue reading Mobile games are for paws, too

What roles do women play in fishing communities?

Opportunities for alternative livelihoods in fishing communities in Indonesia are being investigated by a team of Indonesian and Australian scientists.

They’re working to understand fisheries and the options for women in coastal areas, while reducing the pressure on targeted marine resources.

Small-scale fisheries are an important source of food security and income in developing countries. Many are also growing into international exporters, but they can place a huge strain on fish populations.

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Is the Bali ocean sunfish tourism sustainable?

Researchers are diving deep to find out more about the ocean sunfish, the Jabba the Hutt of the fish world, that hang out on the reefs off Bali for just three months each year. They’ve become an intriguing tourist attraction for divers, but is this tourism sustainable?

The sunfish head to the reefs from July to October to seek out cleaner fish—such as longfin bannerfish and emperor angelfish— which help them remove skin parasites and clean up skin lesions.

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Manta rays munching on micro-plastics

More than a million tons of plastic are thought to enter Indonesia’s
oceans every year.

Much of it is in the form of micro-plastics, and that could be harming iconic oceanic filter feeders such as the manta ray.

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