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Ceridwen Fraser imageContact

Office 310 Castle Street, Room 143
Tel+64 3 479 8306

Academic qualifications

Bachelor of Applied Science (Conservation of Cultural Materials), University of Canberra, 2000
Bachelor of Marine Science (Hons 1A), Macquarie University, 2005
PhD (Zoology), University of Otago, 2009

Research interests

  • Biogeography: how physical processes (such as earthquakes and volcanoes) influence spatial patterns of biodiversity
  • Long-distance dispersal, e.g. of coastal marine organisms and their pathogens / parasites
  • Antarctic and sub-Antarctic ecology and evolution
  • How density-dependent processes influence spatial biodiversity patterns

My group combines molecular ecology with aspects of earth sciences to understand the processes that shape global patterns of biodiversity. We use a wide range of techniques to address research questions, including genetics (e.g. metabarcoding and phylogenomic analyses), and ecology, and have a particular focus on the high-latitude ecosystems of the Southern Hemisphere (New Zealand, the sub-Antarctic and Antarctica). Examples include studying how kelp communities and parasites can raft long distances across oceans, how plants and animals probably survived past ice ages by sheltering around volcanoes (and in volcanic caves), in Antarctica, and how large disturbances such as earthquakes create opportunities for genetic and community change in marine ecosystems in New Zealand.

I am also a member of the Coastal People: Southern Skies collaboration that connects communities with world-leading, cross-discipline research to rebuild coastal ecosystems.
Coastal People: Southern Skies

More information on my group's research can be found at

View my publications at
View my Google scholar profile

For potential research students

If you are a student interested in doing a research project within my group, I would be happy to hear from you. I occasionally have some funding to support scholarships for undergraduate (summer projects and Honours) and Masters research, and the University of Otago has many PhD scholarships available for high-achieving students, including those from overseas.

You can read about the group's projects, see what other students are doing (or have done), and contact me to discuss possibilities. Most projects include some genetic analyses as well as environmental data (this sort of work is known as molecular ecology), so students that have studied biology / ecology, ideally including some genetics, are most well placed for this work.

Visit here for details on group's projects and to see what other students are doing (or have done)




Postgraduate students

View current and former students who have worked in the Fraser Lab


Perry, F., Duffy, G. A., Lamare, M. D., & Fraser, C. I. (2024). Kelp holdfast microclimates buffer invertebrate inhabitants from extreme temperatures. Marine Environmental Research, 198, 106523. doi: 10.1016/j.marenvres.2024.106523 Journal - Research Article

Wolff, J. O., Kennedy, S. R., Houghton, M., Pascoe, P., Gajski, D., Derkarabetian, S., Fraser, C., … Renault, D. (2024). Infrequent long-range dispersal and evolution of a top terrestrial arthropod predator in the sub-Antarctic. American Naturalist. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1086/730827 Journal - Research Article

Vaux, F., Parvizi, E., Duffy, G. A., Dutoit, L., Craw, D., Waters, J. M., & Fraser, C. I. (2024). First genomic snapshots of recolonising lineages following a devastating earthquake. Ecography. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1111/ecog.07117 Journal - Research Article

Pearman, W. S., Morales, S. E., Vaux, F., Gemmell, N. J., & Fraser, C. I. (2024). Host population crashes disrupt the diversity of associated marine microbiomes. Environmental Microbiology, 26, e16611. doi: 10.1111/1462-2920.16611 Journal - Research Article

Duffy, G. A., Montiel, F., Purich, A., & Fraser, C. I. (2024). Emerging long-term trends and interdecadal cycles in Antarctic polynyas [Brief report]. PNAS, 121(11), e2321595121. doi: 10.1073/pnas.2321595121 Journal - Research Other

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