September 6, 2016

New fish species unveiled; live specimens at Bishop Museum

Honolulu, HI In the midst of the ongoing International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress in Honolulu, scientists from Bishop Museum and NOAA published a description today of a new species of butterflyfish from deep reefs of the protected Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in the remote Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.  The study is published in the open-access scientific journal ZooKeys. The public will now have a chance to view live specimens of this butterflyfish in a new aquarium exhibit space in conjunction with Bishop Museum’s current exhibit Journeys: Heritage of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. The new display will be opened with a special edition of the Museum’s lecture series titled “Traditions of the Pacific: Expanding the Journey,” on Sept. 7, 2016. In light of President Barack Obama’s recent expansion of Papahānaumokuākea, this lecture will bring together a panel of distinguished Bishop Museum researchers to give attendees a timely and in-depth look at the largest protected marine area on the planet.

Dr. Norine Yeung, malacology researcher and an invited speaker at the IUCN World Conservation Congress, will be highlighting examples from the Journeys exhibit to demonstrate how museums connect us to nature through research, cultural heritage and education. Dr. Mara Mulrooney, director of cultural resources, will talk about her recent visit to Nihoa, and the cultural richness and significance of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Lastly, the panel will be enriched with first-hand accounts from Dr. Richard Pyle, associate zoologist and the first author on the publication describing the new butterflyfish. Pyle will talk about his diving adventures in the largely unexplored coral reef “twilight zones”—those between 100 and 500 feet—and will reflect on the implications of the recent expansion of the Monument by President Obama.

Following the lecture, attendees will be among the first to view live specimens of the butterflyfish in a new aquarium installation in Bishop Museum’s Science Adventure Center. The new fish, Prognathodes basabei, is named after Pete Basabe, a veteran diver from Kona, Hawai‘i who over the years has assisted with the collection of reef fishes for numerous scientific studies and educational displays. Basabe, an experienced deep diver himself, was instrumental in providing support for the dives that produced the first specimen of the fish that now bears his name.

What:  Traditions of the Pacific: Expanding the Journey

Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2016

6:30-8 p.m. in Hawaiian Hall (check-in begins at 6 p.m.)

Price:   $10 + Eventbrite fees (Bishop Museum members are free)

Parking – $3 (Museum members are free)

To reserve tickets visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/traditions-of-the-pacific-expanding-the-journey-tickets-27398531746

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About Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum:

The Bishop Museum was founded in 1889 by Charles Reed Bishop in memory of his wife Bernice Pauahi Bishop, a royal descendant of King Kamehameha I. Bishop Museum is proud to be recognized as the principal museum of the Pacific, housing the world’s largest collection of Hawaiian and Pacific artifacts and natural history specimens. In total, Bishop Museum’s collections consist of more than 25 million items, including over 22 million biological specimens and more than two million cultural artifacts derived from a legacy of research spanning more than 125 years. These collections also include more than 115,000 historical publications, and one million historical photographs, films, works of art, audio recordings, and manuscripts. More than 300,000 people visit the Museum each year, including over 40,000 schoolchildren. For more information, please visit www.BishopMuseum.org, follow @BishopMuseum on Twitter and Instagram, become a fan of Bishop Museum on Facebook, visit Bishop Museum’s YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/BishopMuseum, or call (808) 847-3511.

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http://lat.ms/2ncdbyW

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