Dr Kate Hutson

Marine Parasitology
James Cook University

Parasitism is the most popular lifestyle on Earth, even fish get parasites on their scales, fins and gills. Parasites sucking, feeding and crawling on or in fish can make fish sick or even kill them. Parasites can be particularly problematic in fish farms, because the fish are confined and may be stressed during handling, making them more susceptible to infection. Dr Hutson’s research enables appropriate parasite management which results in improved production of farmed fish and reduces impacts on the surrounding environment

Dr Hutson is fascinated by parasites and that some of them are quite beautiful. There are many different types of parasites and many species are poorly known or waiting to be discovered. Her research integrates species discovery and biology with practical, applied research to deliver tangible benefits to aquaculture.

Kate has been invited to present on Scope, provided information on various parasites infecting marine fishes. She has worked with teachers at Kirwan State High School to advance their science and aquaculture programme, developing aquaculture practicals for year 10 students and assisting to develop a Certificate II in Aquaculture.