Whale shark on Ningaloo reef in Australia.
Working with folks from CSIRO @csirogram in Australia. I am taking samples of the microbes that live on the skin surface of whale sharks to identify what bacteria live there and what are they doing. This is the fourth location I have collected samples from. Soon we will have an idea of how similar these microbial communities are on the skin of whale sharks from the various regions of the world. This investigation comes in light of increasing marine disease world wide, much of which is driven by an imbalance in microbes the live with the host organism. Now is the time to establish baselines such as this so if disease becomes a problem there is an idea of what the normal should be.