South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity | Wikipedia audio article


The South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity
(SAIAB), is involved in research, education and in applications of its knowledge and research
to African fish fauna, for either economic or conservation benefit. The institute was formerly named the JLB Smith
Institute of Ichthyology, in honour of Professor James Leonard Brierley Smith, who named and
described the living coelacanth Latimeria chalumnae. Situated in Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape,
the South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity (SAIAB) is an internationally recognised centre
for the study of aquatic biodiversity. As a National Facility of the NRF, SAIAB serves
as a major scientific resource for knowledge and understanding the biodiversity and functioning
of globally significant aquatic ecosystems. With both marine and freshwater biogeographical
boundaries, southern Africa is ideally placed to monitor and document climate change. From a marine perspective South Africa forms
the southern apex of a major continental mass, flanked by very different marine ecosystems
on the east and west coasts, and projecting towards the cold southern Ocean large marine
ecosystem. SAIAB’s scientific leadership and expertise
in freshwater aquatic biodiversity is vital to the national interest when dealing with
issues arising from exponentially increasing pressures of human population growth and development

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