All are welcome to this Department of Biological Sciences PhD Qualifying Exam seminar!
“Investigating food web and trophic interactions in Singapore’s reservoirs”, a seminar by graduate student Liew Jia Huan (supervisor: Asst Prof. Darren Yeo & Dr. Tan Heok Hui) from the Freshwater and Invasion Biology Laboratory.
Date: 30 November 2012; Time: 10 AM; Venue: DBS Conference room (map)
Abstract: The role of reservoirs in Singapore and their importance as a major source of potable water in the city state includes the preservation of their aesthetics and water quality, traits that are closely linked to the diversity and ecology of the biota in an aquatic habitat. However, aside from species lists and anecdotal information, little is known about the ecology of reservoir aquatic communities and the processes that regulate them. Trophic interactions are an integral part of various ecological processes and have been documented extensively in theoretical and empirical studies. Here, I use a combination of stable isotope and gut content analyses to investigate the food web structure of selected reservoirs in Singapore by elucidating the directionality and strength of trophic links between ecologically important aquatic organisms. This will allow us to better understand the complexity of food webs by shedding light on often cryptic issues such as source of primary production, dietary niches and selective assimilation of food items, among others. I will also attempt to construct and test predictive models which address questions pertaining to conservation of native freshwater fauna and biological control of pest/non-native organisms.