Marine Life

  • Duckbilled Clingfish specimens

    24 Apr 2017

    New clingfish discovery shows value of museum collections

    A new genus and species of clingfish has been discovered on the shelves of the Western Australian Museum’s Harry Butler Research Centre.

    Western Australian Museum Curator of Fishes Dr Glenn Moore discovered the new clingfish with fellow researcher Dr Kevin Conway from Texas A&M University.

    “We came across two specimens of clingfish that had similar characteristics, yet unmistakably different from the other 160 known clingfishes,” Dr Moore said.

    Read more

    News
    Flora Perrella

  • The crucifix crab Charybdis feriatus (Linneaus, 1758)

    13 Apr 2017

    Creature Feature: Holy Crab! The crucifix crab Charybdis feriata (Linneaus, 1758)

    This large and colourful species of swimming crab is wide ranging in the tropical Indo-West Pacific from East Africa the Persian Gulf through to Indonesia and Japan, and throughout most of Australia. The crucifix crab lives in shallow sandy or rocky areas. In parts of its range, such as India, the crucifix crab forms a substantial commercial and recreational fishery but in Australia this species is quite rare and isn’t caught in large numbers by Australian crabbers.

    Read more

    Blog entry
    Morgan Strong

  • Introducing Moridilla fifo

    9 Sep 2016

    Moridilla fifo

    Thanks to all the entrants to the Name this Creature competition. Last month, Dr Nerida Wilson announced the winning name on ABC Radio National’s Off Track program: Moridilla fifo.

    Read more

    Article
    Western Australian Museum

  • 13 Jul 2016

    A new species of spider crab in northern Australia

    Spider crabs are members of the superfamily Majoidea. Not your average-looking crab, many of them possess long thin legs (hence their name) and weird body shapes. Majoids are also known as decorator crabs because they camouflage themselves by attaching other organisms, such as seaweeds and sponges, to the spines and hairs on their legs and carapace. One of the largest species of spider crabs found in Australia is from the genus Paranaxia.

    Read more

    Blog entry
    Andrew Hosie

  • The Coral Compactus

    23 May 2016

    WA Coral Field Guides

    The Coral Compactus: Western Australia Hard Coral Genus Identification Guide Version 1.1

    Abstract:

    Read more

    Article
    Western Australian Museum

  • 6 May 2016

    Discover "Beneath the Waves"

    One of the biggest marine biodiversity surveys in the world, led by researchers from the Western Australian Museum, has been turned into an interactive online documentary with multiple layers of learning thanks to production company Periscope Pictures and funding from ScreenWest.

    Read more

    Article
    Western Australian Museum

  • Image of the skeletal structure of a fish

    30 Jun 2015

    Collecting and identifying fish

    Curators at the Western Australian Museum are regularly involved in scientific projects that aim to increase our understanding of Western Australian biodiversity and biogeography. In this podcast Curator of Fishes Dr Glenn Moore explains the methods used to collect fishes in order to survey as much of the biodiversity as possible, and his approach to identifying species.

    Read more

    Article
    Western Australian Museum

  • #1 This freshwater crayfish belongs to the species Cherax preissi which is usually dark coloured, ranging from brown-black to blue-black.

    9 Mar 2015

    A behind-the-scenes look at our crustacean collection

    Lobsters, crayfish, rock lobsters, slipper lobsters, blind lobsters… The Crustacean group hosts many species which are very similar in shape. However, they do not all live in the same environments and some of them have very divergent ecologies. This photo gallery shows several species that could be easily mistaken. Would you be able to recognise each crustacean?

    Read more

    Photo Galleries
    Jessica Scholle

  • Baler shell specimens collected in Indonesia; species Melo aethiopica

    23 Feb 2015

    A behind-the-scenes look at our volute collection

    The common name Volutes refers to the taxonomic family Volutidae, a family of predatory sea snails. These marine gastropod molluscs mostly occur in tropical seas, though some species inhabit the cold polar waters. Of the 200 species of volutes distributed worldwide, around 70 are known from Australia; many of those from Western Australian are endemic, found nowhere else in the world. Their glossy and large shell adorned with attractive patterns make this family very prized in shell collections.

    Read more

    Photo Galleries
    Jessica Scholle

  • Fossil shell which belongs to the extinct species Miltha hamptonensis

    9 Feb 2015

    A behind-the-scenes look at our Roe Calcarenite fossil collection

    About 3 million years ago the Leeuwin Current flowed strongly, warming the waters along the south-west Australian coast to such an extent that mangroves flourished and corals grew. This warm sea also supported rich molluscan faunas. Nearly 600 species are known from a thin limestone called the Roe Calcarenite which outcrops on the Roe Plains. Because of their recent age about two-thirds of the species are still living today, although some are now found in warmer waters to the north.

    Read more

    Photo Galleries
    Jessica Scholle

  • Image of a micromollusc. Woodside Collection Project (2009-2014)

    6 Feb 2015

    West Coast Marine Molluscs

    Western Australia (WA) has a unique and diverse marine fauna. You may have noticed, walking along our beaches, a wide variety of seashells. Who do these shells belong to? And how do they survive? 

    Read more

    Blog entry
    Western Australian Museum

  • A new species of sponge, pictured growing on a rock overhang in a reef

    5 Sep 2014

    Two new sponge species with Nyoongar species names

    Two local scientists from the Western Australian Museum and Department of Fisheries recently published the descriptions of two new sponge species found in temperate coastal seas in southwest Western Australia. They gave these sponges Nyoongar names as a tribute to the region’s traditional owners.

    Read more

    Blog entry
    Morgan Strong

  • Freshwater crayfish which belongs to the species Cherax preissi, commonly known as Koonac

    11 Apr 2014

    A behind-the-scenes look at our crustacean collection

    This small photo gallery gives a behind-the-scenes look into the crustacean collection. It will be enhanced in the near future with a Smartphone and tablet app that the Western Australian Museum is currently developing. This Smartphone and tablet app will reveal what happens behind-the-scenes at the Museum, explaining the research performed and showcasing our collections.

    The Western Australian Museum is developing a variety of new products for our audiences, and invites you to give your opinion about this app project by answering a short survey:

    Read more

    Photo Galleries
    Jessica Scholle

  • Baler shell specimens which belong to the species Melo miltonis

    28 Mar 2014

    A behind-the-scenes look at our volute collection

    This small photo gallery gives a behind-the-scenes look into the volute collection. It will be enhanced in the near future with a Smartphone and tablet app that the Western Australian Museum is currently developing. This Smartphone and tablet app will reveal what happens behind-the-scenes at the Museum, explaining the research performed and showcasing our collections.

    Read more

    Photo Galleries
    Jessica Scholle

  • Divers working on a large coral reef

    28 Feb 2014

    Offshore treasures found in WA Museum fieldtrip

    Scientists and researchers led by a team from the Western Australian Museum have made a series of surprising and exciting discoveries in waters nearly 350 kilometres off the Kimberley coast.

    Among them were previously undocumented fauna, species recorded for the first time in Western Australia and, in some cases, Australia.

    The data and specimens collected are being analysed and documented in the Museum’s Welshpool laboratories.

    Read more

    News
    Morgan Strong

  • Scuba diver swimming above Kimberley reef

    13 Feb 2014

    Researching and surveying – Kimberley 2013

    Introduction

    The WA Museum and partner agencies have performed surveys in the Kimberley to examine and survey marine biodiversity and their associated habitats. This video introduces the processes and activities required to undertake such research.

    Read more

    Video
    Danny Murphy

  • 13 Feb 2014

    Trends and Discoveries – Kimberley 2013

    Summary

    The WA Museum and partner agencies have performed surveys along the Kimberley coast to examine marine biodiversity. This video introduces some of the initial discoveries that the research team has made during the research expedition.

    Read more

    Video
    Danny Murphy