Black Gill: Shrimpers and scientists collaborate to study parasite

Georgia’s shrimpers are already facing plenty of challenges like high gas prices, inflation and international competition. But climate change is exacerbating a new problem: black gill, a parasite that is decreasing shrimp populations and is worsening with rising ocean temperatures. On Dec. 15, the University of Georgia’s Skidaway Institute of Oceanography invited shrimpers, researchers and other local stakeholders aboard the R/V Savannah to collect samples in the Wassaw Sound and discuss the current research and on-the-water observations of black gill. Black gill is a parasite that lodges itself into shrimps’ gills and feeds on that tissue. It’s a ciliate, a single-celled organism. It gets its name from the shrimp’s immune response to the invader, which turns the gills black as the shrimp’s body tries to fight off the intruder. Photos, >click to read< 10:37

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