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MB3160 - Evolution and Ecology of Reef Fishes

Credit points: 3
Year: 2019
Student Contribution Band: Band 2
Administered by: College of Science and Engineering

This subject requires prior approval from the subject co-ordinator. All students must meet the pre-requisite requirements.

The biology of coral reef fishes with an emphasis on species from reefs and adjacent waters of the Great Barrier Reef. The subject covers the ecology, morphology, systematics and evolution of coral reef fishes. Practical work includes a laboratory and field program that introduces functional morphology, ecology and field identification of coral reef fishes. This subject will also provide an introduction to laboratory and field research methods.

Learning Outcomes

  • be able to critically evaluate both the methods and outcomes of reef fish research;
  • be able to identify the major groups of reef fishes and their ecological and morphological characteristics;
  • understand and be familiar with the methods used to study the ecology of reef fishes;
  • have demonstrable knowledge of the current literature relevant to reef fish evolution and ecology;
  • understand the functional morphology, ecology and evolution of these fishes and use this knowledge in assessing the role of fishes on coral reefs.
Students enrolled in this subject should have a good understanding of evolutionary biology and biogeography of marine organisms (eg MB2070) and vertebrate anatomy (eg BS1007). A basic knowledge of the ecology of marine systems (eg MB2050, MB2060 OR BS2460) is also necessary. A minimum mark of Credit in MB2070 or equivalent is required for entry in this subject.
Prerequisites: MB2050 and (MB2060 or BS2460) and a minimum mark of CREDIT in MB2070 (or MB5070 or equivalent)
MB3169 MB5160


Townsville, Study Period 1, Internal
Census Date 28-Mar-2019
Coordinator: Professor David Bellwood
Lecturers: Professor David Bellwood, Dr Orpha Bellwood.
Workload expectations:

The student workload for this 3 credit point subject is approximately 130 hours.

  • 25 hours lectures
  • 33 hours practicals
  • 4 days fieldwork
  • assessment and self-directed study
Assessment: end of semester exam (65%); written assignment (10%); laboratory project (25%).
Restrictions: Enrolment in this offering is restricted.

Note: Minor variations might occur due to the continuous Subject quality improvement process, and in case of minor variation(s) in assessment details, the Subject Outline represents the latest official information.