My Antarctic project is a collaborative work with Prof. Dr. Peter Convey and Mr. Michael J. Dunn from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and Prof. Dr. David Pearce from Northumbria University, United Kingdom. Most of the laboratory work are conducted in National Antarctic Research Centre (NARC), University of Malaya under supervision of Prof. Dato’ Dr. Azizan Abu Samah and Prof. Dr. Irene Tan Kit Ping. Special thanks to the fellowship award funded by Yayasan Penyelidikan Antartika Sultan Mizan (YPASM) and funding from National Antarctic Research Centre (NARC), University of Malaya
This project aims to: 1) Analyse and compare the bacterial communities in penguins’ diet (or known as vomit), guano (or known as faeces/poo) and rookery soil samples. 2) Determine the diet of penguins (what do penguins eat) using DNA-based method.
Penguins are important indicator in both marine and terrestrial ecosystems because of their life cycle. Long-term penguin diet data have been a powerful tool to study changes in marine resources. Also, they have considerable importance for Antarctic terrestrial ecosystems, particularly through the transfer of nutrients and possibly microbiota contained in their output.
In Signy Research Station (Signy Island, Antarctica), there is a long term monitoring programme on two different species of penguins under British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Special thanks to the fellowship award funded by Yayasan Penyelidikan Antartika Sultan Mizan (YPASM) and funding from University of Malaya, I will be collecting penguin samples and do some laboratory work in Signy Research Station.
I hope findings from this study will contribute scientific information to the polar database and new approach could be developed which could also strengthen international capacity and cooperation in polar research. On the other hand, this study could provide a better understanding to public about what is being consumed by penguins and the influences of their diet/food to them themselves and their living environment