Kerry Ann van der Walt

PhD Candidate
Kerry Ann van der Walt


Thermal tolerance and the effects of climate change on marine organisms in the Kariega Estuary and adjacent intertidal coastline.

The aim of this thesis is to determine the thermal vulnerability (CTMax and CTMin) of selected fish and macroinvertebrate species; depending on their distribution range, habitat and degree of motility; between winter and summer seasons. In conjunction to this, blood plasma cortisol concentrations will be measured to increasing and decreasing thermal stress. Furthermore, star-Oddi heart rate loggers (fish) and infrared sensors (invertebrates) will be inserted and attached to additionally determine the stress in blacktail, Diplodus capensis, and mussels, Perna perna, and mangrove crabs, Parasesarma catenata, by a change in their heart rate.

Registered: Rhodes University (Department of Ichthyology and Fisheries Science)

Supervisor: Dr. Nikki James (SAIAB)
Co-Supervisors: Prof. Warren Potts (DRhodes University (Department of Ichthyology and Fisheries Science), Dr. Francesca Porri (SAIAB)