Paper presentation at a conference by APPEAR scholarship holder: Species in Ancient Lakes in Uganda

APPEAR scholarship holder Papius Tibihika
Scholarship holder Papius Dias Tibihika, as part of his doctoral work, presented a paper entitled “East African freshwater fish impasse: Molecular genetic diversity and differentiation of the anthropogenically threatened Oreochromis niloticus inferred from microsatellite genotyping” which took place in Entebbe. The conference (SIAL 8) was jointly organized by the Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Uganda (MUST) and Justus Liebig University Giessen, Germany (JLU) in Entebbe, Uganda from 29th of July to 3rd of August 2018 at Laico Lake Victoria.

Oreochromis niloticus Linnaeus, 1758, is domestically the most vital fish species for availing aquatic animal proteins in the Great Lakes Region. However, over decades, the cichlid has been troubled most notably through translocations into non-native locales, hence subjecting the species natural genetic structure un-certain to future generations. Papius through his PhD research, using molecular techniques aims at cataloguing the impacts of anthropogenic influxes in the East African freshwater Nile tilapia fish species (Oreochromis niloticus), for contributing to sustainable exploitation and conservation.

Papius Dias Tibihika is currently a PhD fellow at the Institute for Integrative Nature Conservation Research- University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU) in Austria, in Professor Harald Meimberg’s Laboratory. Papius is doing his research in the APPEAR framework under the STRECAFISH project. His research work entails geometric morphometrics and developing molecular genetic markers (Microsatellite loci/Simple sequence repeats “SSRs” or Short tandem repeats “STRs”) for ascertaining molecular genetic diversity and differentiation of Oreochromis niloticus from native and non-native locales in Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia and West Africa (Burkina Faso). Papius holds a MSc degree in Aquaculture and Fisheries from Wageningen University and Research Centre, the Netherlands and a BSc in the same field from Makerere University, Kampala-Uganda. Before starting his PhD work, Papius worked as a Research Officer and Programme Leader, at the Livestock and Fisheries Research Programme under the National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO), based at Kachwekano Zonal Agricultural Research and Development Institute-Kabale, Uganda.