Marine Biology and Physiology
Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
Dr Fitzgibbon’s research focusses on understanding the fascinating larvae of lobsters in order to develop valuable aquaculture industries and to protect wild stocks which are at risk from over fishing and climate change. Lobsters have possibly the most bizarre and prolonged larvae life cycle of any marine animal which can last for two years, drifting in open-ocean. His research has developed advanced larval rearing technologies meaning we can now reliably culture lobsters from eggs. The capacity to rear larvae has unlocked the opportunity to examine the larval stages and critically Dr Fitzgibbon’s research has shown that their unique physiology makes lobsters particularly vulnerable to climate change. This research provides critical insights into the ecology of larval lobsters and helps explain why many important commercial lobster populations in Australia and worldwide appear to be declining.
Quinn has been a volunteer teacher at Taroona Primary School for six years as part of the Scientists in Schools program He designed and coordinated the IMAS National Science Week program which and also provides lectures, activities and hands-on presentations to community based education programs, including the Tasmanian Seafood Council Working on Water and the Science at Sea programs.