The northern rockhopper penguins at Edinburgh Zoo are hugely popular with visitors, engaging and inspiring children and adults alike on a daily basis. This species is one of seven types of crested penguin which together form the Eudyptes genus, which means ’good diver’ in Ancient Greek. Read more about how samples available through CryoArks are helping to better understand this charismatic species.
Sílvia Pérez-Espona attended two GenRes Bridge (Genetic resources for a food-secure and forested Europe) workshops as representative of IUCN’s CGSG and the CryoArks project. GenRes Bridge is an EU-funded project with the main objective to develop an integrated strategy and a framework for the crop, forest and animal genetic resources domains. The two back-to-back workshops took place in Tuusala (Finland) between 28th-31st of October 2019 and were organised by project partners from Luke and NIBIO.
Can we bring back extinct species using DNA? Should we? Why else might we archive genetic material? These questions and others were addressed by several members of the CryoArks team at an event at this year’s Edinburgh Science Festival.
It was a long 5 days transit to St Helena, dealing with sea sickness and adjusting back to day time hours for a short period. But there is nothing like a sunny day at sea and we were very lucky to have quite a few of those during our travels. Whist in transit one of the things that struck me most was how the birds seemed to disappear as we transitioned to the warmer, more tropical climate.
In the vast South Atlantic Ocean, the most remote inhabited island on the planet suddenly rises up out of the sea. Not having seen land since I boarded the RRS Discovery and she departed Stanley in the Falklands 8 days before, it was an exciting sight. The island’s volcanic nature is evident not only by its sharp peak but also by the black rock flow visible near the settlement, a reminder of a previous eruption.
Kirsty Lloyd, our BBSRC funded technician based at the Natural History Museum, will embark on a research cruise to collect samples from marine organisms for the CryoArks Biobank. She will be on the RRS Discovery when it leaves from Stanley in the Falkland Islands and travels to two UK Overseas Territories, Tristan da Cunha and St Helena.