Deep-sea systematics and ecology research group
Our research group is studying the natural history of the deep sea.
We are interested in the origins, adaptive radiation, classification, biodiversity and ecological interactions of deep-sea animals.
We work with academic colleagues, government funding agencies and industry to take part in deep-sea oceanographic research expeditions across the globe.
Our research mainly focuses on annelid worms (polychaetes), an abundant and diverse group of invertebrates. They inhabit deep-sea muddy sediments, and chemosynthetic ecosystems such as hydrothermal vents, cold seeps and whale-falls.
We also study and collect genetic data on other animal groups, including molluscs, echinoderms, bryozoans, sponges and cnidarians.
We are undertaking a range of science projects related to deep-sea biology, and contributing data and specimens to the Museum's collection. These projects are underpinned by our high-quality taxonomic work, which combines both molecular (DNA) and morphological data, and uses species concepts based on phylogenetic inference.
Focus: Studying the origins, diversity and interactions of life in the planet's largest ecosystem