Accessibility Skip to Global Navigation Skip to Local Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Site Map Menu

Our students

See our Alumni

Current students

NB: Thesis titles are working titles only

Katerina AchilleosKaterina

Thesis Title (PhD): Growth and calcification in articulated bryozoans as a response to environmental conditions.
Supervisor: Abby Smith, Chris Brown (Biochemistry), Dennis Gordon (NIWA, Wellington).
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Biological Sciences & MSc in Ecology and Biodiversity (University of Cyprus, Cyprus)


Jacob AndersonJacob

Thesis Title (PhD): Determining Antarctica’s terrestrial climate history from microbial populations in permafrost
Supervisor: Gary Wilson, Craig Cary (University of Waikato), Christina Riesselman
Previous Degree(s): BSc - Earth Science and Geography (Massey University), MSc - Geology (University of Otago)


  • Anderson, J.T.H, Wilson, G.S., Jones, R.S., Fink, D. and Fujioka, T., (2020). Ice surface lowering of Skelton Glacier, Transantarctic Mountains, since the Last Glacial Maximum: Implications for retreat of grounded ice in the western Ross Sea. Quaternary Science Reviews, 237, 106305.
  • Anderson, J.T.H., Wilson, G.S., Fink, D., Lilly, K., Levy, R.H., and Townsend, D. (2017). Reconciling marine and terrestrial evidence for post LGM ice sheet retreat in southern McMurdo Sound, Antarctica. Quaternary Science Reviews, 157, 1-13.
  • Jones, R.S., Norton, K.P., Mackintosh, A.N., Anderson, J.T.H., Kubik, P., Vockenhuber, C., Wittmann, H., Fink, D., Wilson, G.S., Golledge, N.R. and McKay, R., (2017). Cosmogenic nuclides constrain surface fluctuations of an East Antarctic outlet glacier since the Pliocene. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 480, pp.75-86.

Peter Batson

Thesis Title (PhD): Aspects of the biology of Hornerid bryozoans
Supervisor: Abby Smith
Previous Degree(s): MSc in Marine Science (Otago University)

Tim Baxter

Thesis Title (MSc): Topographic upwelling at the Three Kings Islands, New Zealand
Supervisor: Rob Smith, Chris Hepburn, Pete Russell
Previous Degree(s):BAppSc Aquaculture and fisheries and Accounting

Louise Bennett-Jones imageLouise Bennet-Jones

Thesis title (MSc): Paua (Haliotis iris) in the East Otago Taiapure; Assessment, Enhancement, Management.
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn
Previous degrees: BSc (Hons) Marine Biology & Coastal Ecology, Plymouth University (UK)

Stephanie Bennington

Thesis Title (MSc): Habitat-use of bottlenose dolphins in Doubtful & Dusky sound
Supervisors: Steve Dawson & Will Rayment
Previous Degree(s): BSc majoring in Ecology & Zoology (Otago University)   

William Carome

Thesis Title (MSc): Investigating potential effects of tourism on Hector's dolphins in Akaroa Harbour
Supervisor: Steve Dawson, Will Rayment, Liz Slooten (Zoology)
Previous Degree(s): BA Biology (Boston College)

Vincent CheuyglintaseVincent Cheuyglintase

Thesis Title (PGdipSci): The impact of heavy metal exposure on the olfactory ability of rocky reef invertebrates
Supervisor: Bridie Allan
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Zoology, minoring in Marine Science

Isabella ClereIsabella Clere

Thesis Title (MSc): Quantifying natural levels of plastic pollution in commercially important fish in Otago
Supervisor: Bridie Allan
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Food Science and Marine Science (Otago)

Alex ConnollyAlex

Thesis Title (MSc): Identifying shifts in the trophic positions of coastal fish species associated with an increasing human population.
Supervisor: Lucy Wing, Steve Wing, Ian Smith
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Ecology (Otago)

Mason Court imageMason Court

Thesis title: Exploring the relationship between herbivorous fish species and Undaria
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn and Bridie Allan
Previous degrees: Post Graduate Diploma in Science (Marine Science)

Connor Davenport

Thesis Title (MSc): Effects of bathymetry, wave environment and sea level on rip current dynamics in a wave resolving model
Supervisors: Ata Suanda, Abby Smith
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor of Science in Geology, Oceanography (University of Otago)

Fenella Deans

Thesis Title (PhD): The influence of ocean acidification and warming on greenhouse gases and microbial community structure and processing in New Zealand’s coastal waters
Supervisor: Federico Baltar, Sergio Morales, Clifford Law
Previous Degree(s): BSc (Hons) Ecology (University of Otago)

Toby DicksonToby ID shot

Thesis Title (MSc): Aerial photogrammetry and a size structure analysis of sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) at Kaikoura, New Zealand.
Supervisors: Steve Dawson, Will Rayment
Previous Degree(s): BSc, majoring in Zoology, minor in Marine Science, University of Otago

Ian Dixon-AndersonIan Dixon-Anderson

Thesis Title (MSc): Effect of Magnesium Variation in Seawater on Marine Biogenic Calcite
Supervisors: Abby Smith, Christina McGraw (Chemistry)
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor of Chemistry (Grinnell College, USA)

Raising red tubeworms (Galeolaria hystrix), blue tubeworms (Spirobranchus cariniferus), Watersipora, sea urchins (Evechinus chlorites), and jingle oysters (Anomia trigonopsis) in artificial seawater with magnesium variation to determine calcite mineralogy of local New Zealand invertebrates, and comparing active and passive calcification strategies.

Leonardo Maia Durantemaile330

Thesis Title (MSc): Identifying Food-web structure, Resource Use and Movements of Fishes under the Quota Management System.
Supervisors:Steve Wing, Travis Ingram (Zoology) and Jeff Shima (Victoria University).
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor degree in Oceanography - University of Sao Paulo


  • Durante, L. M., Lotufo, T. M., Cruz, I. S. (In review) The effect of climate change on the distribution of a tropical zoanthid (Palythoa caribaeorum) and its ecological implications. Journal of Marine Systems.
  • Durante, L. M., Cruz, I. C. S., & Lotufo, T. M. C. (2018). The effect of climate change on the distribution of a tropical zoanthid (Palythoa caribaeorum) and its ecological implications. PeerJ, 6, 1–26.
  • Udy, JA, Wing, S., O’Connell-Milne, S., Durante, L., McMullin, R., Kolodzey, S., & Frew, R. (2019). Regional differences in supply of organic matter from kelp forests drive trophodynamics of temperate reef fish. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 621, 19–32.
  • Udy, Jacquetta, Wing, S., O’Connell‐Milne, S., Kolodzey, S., McMullin, R., Durante, L., & Frew, R. (2019). Organic matter derived from kelp supports a large proportion of biomass in temperate rocky reef fish communities: Implications for ecosystem‐based management. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 1–17.

Rosa Edwards

Thesis Title (MSc): Habitat use and foraging ecology of broadnose sevengill sharks in Southern New Zealand
Supervisors: Will Rayment, Steve Wing
Previous Degree(s): BAppSc Hons (1st class), Aquaculture & Fisheries, University of Otago

Nadjejda Espinel Velascoespna527

Thesis Title (PhD): Larval settlement and metamorphosis in marine invertebrates in response to ocean acidification
Supervisors:Miles Lamare, Linn Hoffmann (Botany), Federico Baltar, Sam Dupont (University of Gothenburg) and Antonio Agüera (University of Brussels)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Biology (Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain); MSc Biology (University of Brussels, Belgium); MSc Marine Science (Ghent University, Belgium).


  • Tobias-Hünefeldt S.P., Wing S.R., Espinel-Velasco N., Baltar F. and Morales S. E. (2019) Depth and location influence prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbial community structure in New Zealand fjords. Science of the Total Environment 693: 133507
  • Espinel-Velasco N., Hoffmann L., Agüera A., Byrne M., Dupont S., Uthicke S., Webster N.S., Lamare M., 2018. Effects of ocean acidification on the settlement and metamorphosis of marine invertebrate and fish larvae: A review. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 606, pp.237–257.

Maddy Glover

Thesis Title (MSc):Current and historical extent of Macrocystis pyrifera forests in the South-eastern South Island
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn, Matt Desmond and Emily Tidy (Surveying)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Geography, Ecology and Marine Science, University of Otago

Shannon Goodwin

Thesis Title (MSc): Biomineralogy, allometry and strength of skeletal components from the sea urchin Evechinus chloroticus around New Zealand
Supervisor: Abby Smith
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Ecology (University of Otago)

Jack Hall

Thesis Title (PGDipSc): Impacts of ocean acidification on New Zealand sea urchin (Evechinus chloroticus) nutritional quality
Supervisor: Miles Lamare
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Zoology (University of Otago)

Cameron Hann

Thesis Title (MSc): Bacterial production rates on macro-algal surfaces
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn, Federico Baltar
Previous Degree(s): BApSc Aquaculture and Fisheries, Postgraduate Diploma in Science (Marine Science)   

Max Harvey

Thesis Title (MSc): nvestigating the ecology and effects of tourism on a small population of Hector’s dolphins ( Cephalorhynchus hectori) found in Porpoise Bay, New Zealand.
Supervisors: Will Rayment, Steve Dawson
Previous Degree(s): PGDip Wildlife Management (University of Otago), BSc major Ecology, minor Zoology (University of Otago)

Ashleigh Hawke

Thesis Title (PGdipSci): The effect of heavy metal and microplastic contamination on the escape performance of the New Zealand Triplefin fish
Supervisor: Bridie Allan
Previous Degree: BSc

Sam Heenan

Thesis Title (MSc): Bluff oyster reproduction and recruitment
Supervisors: Miles Lamare
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor of Applied Science majoring in Aquaculture and Fisheries. Minor in Zoology, Bachelor of Commerce Majoring in Accounting   

Michael HeldsingerMichael Heldsinger image

Thesis Title (MSc): Investigating the effect of marine reserves on shark distribution in southern New Zealand.
Description: Using BRUVs (baited remote underwater video systems) to estimate the relative abundance of sevengill sharks (Notorynchus cepedianus) and other coastal elasmobranchs inside and outside of six marine reserves off the South Island, New Zealand, to help to further understand the wider applications of marine reserves and their broader ecological effects.
Supervisor: Will Rayment, Chris Hepburn
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor of Marine Science at the University of Western Australia

María Jesús Valdés HernándezMaria

Thesis Title (PhD): Effect of mussel farms on Hector’s dolphin, Cephalorhynchus hectori hectori, at Banks Peninsula, New Zealand: an ecosystem perspective
Supervisor: Will Rayment, Steve Dawson and Chris Hepburn
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor in Marine Science (Universidad Andres Bello), Marine Biology Degree (Universidad Andres Bello)

Blake HornblowBlake Hornblow

Thesis Title (BAppSc(Hons)): Connectivity of the New Zealand Sand Flounder Rhombosolea plebeia populations
Supervisor: Steve Wing

Tim HowarthTim Howarth

Thesis Title (MSc): The relationship of Undaria pinnatifida and native New Zealand seaweed species in the ocean under the effects of climate change
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn, Matt Desmond
Previous Degree(s):BSc Major Zoology, Minor Marine science

I am looking at the relationship of Undaria pinnatifida and native New Zealand seaweed species in the ocean under the effects of climate change. I hope to provide a greater understanding of Undarias threat to native species by looking at Undarias invasion strategy into new locations and examining if Undaria is more energetically and physiologically better suited at tolerating the increase of ocean temperatures, and the predicted low light periods that come with climate change.

Andrew HurleyAndrew Hurley

Thesis Title (MSc): Mechanisms of shelf-slope exchange and how they impact larval fish communities around Saunders canyon, Otago
Supervisors: Rob Smith and Steve Wing

Simone Jarrett

Thesis Title (MSc): The occurance of coralline algae bleaching
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn
Previous Degree(s): BApSc Aquaculture and Fisheries

Erik JohnsonErik Johnson image

Thesis Title (PhD): Processes Controlling the Region of Freshwater Influence within the Otago Coastal Ocean
Supervisor: Rob Smith, Ata Suanda, Steve Wing
Previous Degree: BSc Honours Earth System Science, McGill University

David Johnstonjohda957

Thesis Title (PhD): Sentinels of the Southern Ocean: southern right whales ( Eubalaena australis) as indicators of oceanic productivity
Supervisor: Steve Dawson, Will Rayment, and Rob Smith
Previous Degrees: BSc in Zoology, Minor in Marine Science (University of Otago), MSc Thesis - Marine Science (University of Otago)


  • Johnston, D., Rayment, W., Slooten, E. & Dawson, S.M. (2017) A time-based method for defining associations using photo-identification. Behaviour, 154: 1029-1050.

Sam KarelitzSam Karelitz

Thesis Title (PhD): Transgenerational plasticity and acclimation of echinoderms in response to climate change stressors.
Supervisors: Miles Lamare, Professor Maria Byrne (University of Sydney), Professor Neil Gemmell (Department of Anatomy)
Previous Degrees: BSc Environmental Science (Plymouth State University), MSc Marine Science (University of Otago)


  • Karelitz, S. E., Uthicke, S., Foo, S. A., Barker, M. F., Byrne, M., Pecorino, D. and Lamare, M. D. (2017), Ocean acidification has little effect on developmental thermal windows of echinoderms from Antarctica to the tropics. Global Change Biology, 23: 657–672. doi:10.1111/gcb.13452
  • Foo SA, Sparks KM, Uthicke S, Karelitz S, Barker M, Byrne M, Lamare M. Contributions of genetic and environmental variance in early development of the Antarctic sea urchin Sterechinus neumayeri in response to increased ocean temperature and acidification. Marine Biology. 2016 Jun 1;163(6):1-1.

Gaby Keeler-May imageGaby Keeler-May

Thesis Title (PhD): Undaria pinnatifida management and control in Southern New Zealand
Supervisors: Chris Hepburn, Daniel Pritchard (Ngāi Tahu), Matt Desmond, Wendy Nelson (University of Auckland)
Previous Degree(s): BSc(Hons) Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz

Eleanor KellyEleanor Kelly

Thesis Title (MSc): Do microbial biofilms increase the palatability of marine plastic debris for fishes?
Supervisors: Bridie Allan
Previous degrees:
BSc majoring in Microbiology, minoring in Marine Science

Anna KluibenschedlAnna Kluibenschedl

Thesis Title (PhD): Future Ocean and New Zealand Coralline Algae: Biological and Ecological Responses Under Elevated pCO2
Supervisor: Miles Lamare, Chris Hepburn, Wendy Nelson (University of Auckland), Christopher Cornwall (Victoria University of Wellington)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Biology, University of Innsbruck/ Austria; MSc Tropical Marine Ecology, University of Bremen, Germany


  • Noonan, S. H. C., Kluibenschedl, A., & Fabricius, K. E. (2018). Ocean acidification alters early successional coral reef communities and their rates of community metabolism. PLOS ONE, 13(5), e0197130.
  • Fabricius, K. E., Kluibenschedl, A., Harrington, L., Noonan, S., & De'Ath, G. (2015). In situ changes of tropical crustose coralline algae along carbon dioxide gradients. Scientific reports, 5.

Stina KolodzeyStina

Thesis Title (PhD): Spatial ecological differences among fish populations across ecotypes & habitats
Supervisors: Steve Wing, Jeff Shima (Victoria University)
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Biology (University of Hamburg), MSc in Marine Science (Otago University)

Paulo F Lagoslagpa454

Thesis Title (PhD): Investigating the response of the krill Nyctiphanes australis (Euphausiacea) to stress caused by environmental change: a dynamic energy budget approach
Supervisor: Miles Lamare
Previous Degree(s): Master Degree in Marine Biology (M.Sc.) , Degree in Marine Biology (BA) (Universidad Andres Bello)

Brad LamontBrad Lamont

Thesis Title (MSc): The effect of chronic and acute exposure of chemical alarm cues on Triplefin embryo physiology and post-hatch behaviourh
Supervisors: Bridie Allan, Sheri Johnson
Previous Degree(s): BSc Ecology and Marine Science (University of Otago)  

Rob Lewislewro351

Thesis Title (MSc): Population demographics of sevengill sharks (Notorynchus cepedianus) in Paterson Inlet, Stewart Island.
Supervisors: Will Rayment, Steve Dawson
Previous Degree(s): BSc Zoology, Massey University; GradDip Marine Science, Otago University   

Millie ManneringMillie Mannering

Thesis Title (MSc): Do microplastics interfere with the way in which coral reef fish use chemical alarm cues to inform risk?
Supervisors: Bridie Allan, Miles Lamare, David Burritt

Tom MassuéTom Massue

Thesis Title (PGDipSc): Warming be 1°C Drives Species and Assemblage Level Responses in Antarctica's Marine Shallows
Supervisors: Miles Lamare
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor in biology of organisms and ecosystems, speciality marine ecology and ethology, University of Nice-Sophia-Antipolis, Nice, France

Rebecca McMullin

Thesis Title (PhD):Tracking flow and fate of organic matter, nutrients and contaminants within food webs surrounding alternate aquaculture configurations.
Supervisors:Steve Wing, Kim Hageman
Previous Degree(s):MSc - Marine Science (University of Otago), BSC - Zoology and Genetics

  • McMullin RM, Wing SR, Wing LC, Shatova OA (2017) Trophic position of Antarctic ice fishes reflects food web structure along a gradient in sea ice persistence. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 564:87-98
  • McMullin RM, Wing SR, Reid MR (2017) Ice fish otoliths record dynamics of advancing and retreating sea ice in Antarctica. Limnol Oceanogr 62:2662–2673  

Hannah Mellomelha265

Thesis Title (PhD): The Effect of Marine Protection on New Zealand Bryozoa
Supervisors: Abby Smith, Anna Wood (Ecology) and Dennis Gordon (NIWA, Wellington), Emily Tidy (Surveying)
Previous Degree(s): BSc & MSc in Biology - Aquatic Science (University of Wisconsin - La Crosse, USA)   

Morgan MeyersMorgan Myers

Thesis Title (PhD): Investigating zooplankton grazing and distribution patterns in New Zealand waters within the context of ocean warming and acidification
Supervisors: Linn Hoffmann (Botany), Steve Wing (Marine Science), Moira Decima (NIWA)
Previous Degree(s): MSc Marine Biology (San Francisco State University), BS Biology (Iowa State University), BA Spanish (Iowa State University)

Teresa MorrellTeresa Morrell

Thesis title (MSc): The impact of microplastic exposure on the reproductive success of Triplefins
Supervisors: Bridie Allan, Sheri Johnson, Mark Lokman, David Burritt

José Moyano imageJosé Emilio Trujillo Moyano

Thesis title: Insights into neonate reef sharks' vulnerability to predation: a behavioural, physiological and ecological approach
Supervisors: Bridie JM Allan, Will Rayment, Jodie Rummer (ARC Centre for Excellence Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University)
Previous degrees: Bachelor in Marine Biology (Universidad Austral de Chile), Marine Biology Degree (Universidad Austral de Chile)


Hang Thi Thuy Nguyen

Thesis Title (PhD): The ecophysiology of coralline algae in Southern New Zealand
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn, Federico Baltar, Daniel Pritchard
Previous Degree(s):BSc in Aquaculture (Hue University of Agriculture and Forestry - Vietnam) MSc in Science (Kyushu University - Japan)   

Pame Olmedo-RojasPame Olmedo-Rojas

Thesis Title (PhD): Environmental drivers of evolution for Antarctic terrestrial organisms
Supervisors: Ceridwen Fraser, Neil Gemmell, Miles Lamare
Previous Degree(s): B.S. Marine Biologist. Universidad Austral de Chile, Chile.

I am interested in what drives Antarctic terrestrial diversity. I will use genomic approaches in terrestrial eukaryotes, combined with spatial analysis to answer the following key questions: what are the drivers of diversity and population connectivity in Antarctic plants? and, do geothermal areas represent highly localized hotspots of diversity?

Paige Olmstead

Thesis Title (PGdipSci): The effect of polymer type on gut morphology in Triplefin fish
Supervisors: Bridie Allan
Previous Degree(s):
Bachelor of Science, University of Otago

Mireya Orozco imageMireya M Montaño Orozco

Thesis title: Dispersion and connectivity within the Bay of Plenty using a continental shelf-resolving regional ocean model
Supervisor: Dr. Ata Suanda

Previous degrees: MSc in Physical Oceanography (CICESE), BSc in Oceanography (Autonomous University of Baja California).


  • Hernandez-Walls, R., Dreyfus-León, M., & Montaño-Orozco, M. M. (2018). Simulation of fluid dynamics through complicated networks of channels with cellular automata. European Journal of Physics 39(6), 065801.

Zoe Psarouthakis image

Zoe Psarouthakis

Thesis title (MSc): The impact of ingested microplastics with adsorbed heavy metals on the fitness and predator avoidance behaviour of Forsterygion capito (robust triplefin fish)
Supervisor: Bridie Allan
Previous degree(s): BAs Biology (Lawrence University)

Celia RichardsonCelia Richardson

Thesis Title (BAppSc Hons): The effects of microplastics on the larval stages of the sea urchin Pseudechinus huttoni
Supervisors: Miles Lamare, Bridie Allan, David Burritt
Previous Degree(s): BSc Zoology with minor in Marine Science, BA Linguistics  

Finn RyderFinn Ryder

Thesis Title (MSc): Population dynamics of pāua in Peraki Bay, Banks Peninsula: Population structure, growth and reproduction
Supervisors: Chris Hepburn, Gaya Gnanalingam, Daniel Pritchard

Alexia Saint-Macary

Thesis title: Dimethylsulfide (DMS) and dimethyl sulfoniopropionate (DMSP) dynamics in the surface ocean
Supervisor: Cliff Law, Christina McGraw (Chemistry)
Previous degrees: BSc in Chemistry, University of Bordeaux (France); MSc in Sea Environmental Chemistry, European University Sea Institute (IUEM) in Plouzan (France)

Nichola Salmond imageNichola Salmond

Thesis Title (MSc): The response of New Zealand cockle Austrovenus stutchburyi to low oxygen events in multiple stressor experiments
Supervisor: Steve Wing, Marc Schallenberg (Zoology)
Previous Degree(s): BSc in Ecology with minor in Marine Science (Otago)   

Rafael Santana imageRafael Santana

Thesis Title (PhD): Variability in the East Auckland Current And its influence on the Continental Shelf Circulation
Supervisor: Ata Suanda, Helen Macdonald, Joanne O'callaghan and Sarah Wakes
Previous Degree(s): BSc Oceanography and MSc Physical Oceanography


  • Santana, R., Lessa, G., Haskins, J. and Wasson, K. (2018). Continuous monitoring reveals drivers of dissolved oxygen variability in a small California estuary. Estuaries and Coasts. 41:99-113. DOI: 10.1007/s12237-017-0329-8
  • Santana, R., Teixeira, C. and Lessa, G. (2018). The impact of different forcing agents on the residual circulation in a tropical estuary (Baía de Todos os Santos, Brazil). Journal of Coastal Research 34(3). DOI: 10.2112/JCOASTRES-D-17-00044.1.
  • Santana, R., Costa, F., Mignac, D., Santana, A., Vidal, V., Zhu, J. and Tanajura, C. Model sensitivity experiments on data assimilation, downscaling and tides for the representation of the Cape São Tomé Eddies. Submitted to Ocean Dynamics (under review after corrections)

Clara SchliemanClara Schlieman

Thesis Title (MSc): Effects of land use on trophic structure of coastal invertebrates: a comparison of Fiordland with Marlborough Sounds
Supervisors: Steve Wing
Previous Degree(s): BS (Marine Biology), University of Hawaii at Manoa   

Daniel SmartDaniel

Thesis Title (MSc):Local Adaptation and Energy Budgets of the Blue Mussel (Mytilus galloprovincialis) in Southern New Zealand
Supervisors: Miles Lamare, Mark Lokman (Zoology)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Oceanography, University of Otago   

Aless Smithsmial920

Thesis Title (MSc):How robust is data gathered by citizen scientists for monitoring intertidal habitats?
Supervisors: Chris Hepburn, Sally Carson (NZMSC), Matthew Desmond (Marine Science/Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu), Daniel Pritchard (Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu)
Previous Degree(s): BAppSci (Aquaculture and Fisheries, minor Ecology), University of Otago

Yuta Tambergtamyu883

Thesis Title (PhD): Aspects of feeding and anatomy of stenolaemate bryozoans, New Zealand
Supervisor: Abby Smith, Miles Lamare and Catherine Reid (University of Canterbury)
Previous Degree(s): Specialist in Ecology & MSc in Biology (Saint Petersburg State University, Russia)


  • Shunatova, N., & Tamberg, Y. (2019). Body cavities in bryozoans: Functional and phylogenetic implications. Journal of morphology, 280(9), 1332-1358.
  • Alexeeva, N., Tamberg, Y., & Shunatova, N. (2019). The (not very) typical protonymphons of Pycnogonum litorale. Journal of morphology, 280(9), 1370-1392.
  • Alexeeva, N., Tamberg, Y., & Shunatova, N. (2018). Postembryonic development of pycnogonids: a deeper look inside. Arthropod structure & development, 47(3), 299-317.
  • Tamberg Y., Shunatova N., (2017). Tentacle structure in freshwater bryozoans. Journal of Morphology, 278(5), 718-733.
  • Alexeeva, N., Bogomolova, E., Tamberg, Y., & Shunatova, N. (2017). Oligomeric larvae of the pycnogonids revisited. Journal of morphology, 278(9), 1284-1304.
  • Tamberg Y., Shunatova N., (2016). Feeding behavior in freshwater bryozoans: function, form, and flow. Invertebrate Biology, 135(2), 138-149.

Sam Thomasthosa410

Thesis Title (PhD): The effects of multiple stressors on ecosystem functioning across a changing turbididity gradient in South Island estuaries
Supervisor: Candida Savage, Conrad Pilditch (Waikato University)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Zoology major,Ecology minor; MSc in Marine Science, University of Otago   

Moss ThompsonMoss Thompson

Thesis Title (MSc): Pup survival of the New Zealand sea lion on the Otago Coast
Supervisor: Will Rayment and Bruce Robertson

Blair Thomsonthobl500

Thesis Title (PhD): Microbial extracellular enzymes and the biogeochemical cycling of phosphorus in the marine environment
Supervisor: Christ Hepburn, Federico Baltar
Previous Degree(s): BA Philosophy, BSc (Hons) Ecology (University of Otago)


  • Thomson, B., Wenley, J., Currie, K., Hepburn, C., Herndl, G.J., Baltar, F. (2019). Resolving the paradox: Continuous cell-free alkaline phosphate activity despite high phosphate concentrations. Marine Chemistry.
  • Baltar, F., De Corte, D., Thomson, B., Yokokawa, T. (2019). Teasing apart the different size pools of extracellular enzymatic activity in the ocean. Science of The Total Environment.
  • Baltar, F., Gutiérrez-Rodríguez, A., Meyer, M., Skudelny, I., Sander, S., Thomson, B., Nodder, S., Middag, R., Morales, S.E. (2018). Specific effect of trace metals on marine heterotrophic microbial activity and diversity: Key role of Iron and Zinc and hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria. Frontiers in Microbiology.
  • Thomson, B., Hepburn, C. D., Lamare, M., and Baltar, F. (2017). Temperature and UV light affect the activity of marine cell-free enzymes. Biogeosciences 14, 3971–3977. doi: 10.5194/bg-14-3971-2017  

Isla TwiggIsla Twigg image

Thesis Title (PhD):Giant Kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) as a biogenic engineer
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn, Federico Baltar, Daniel Pritchard
Previous Degree(s):BAppSc Hons (first class) in Aquaculture & Fisheries (Otago)

Gabrielle (Elle) UelandGabrielle Ueland

Thesis Title (MSc): Carbon Sequestration and Mussel Productivity in Integrated Multi-trophic Aquaculture
Supervisor: Steve Wing
Previous degrees: Bachelor of Arts – Rollins College

Arnaud ValcarcelArnaud Valcarcel

Thesis Title (PhD): Ocean mixing at high Reynolds number: Efficiencies in extrema
Supervisor: Dr Ata Suanda, Pr Steve Wing, Dr Craig Stevens (NIWA), Dr Johanne O’Callaghan (NIWA)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Fundamental Physics, MSc Astrophysics (University of Toulouse, France)

Jesse Vance

Thesis title (PhD): Examining the Drivers of CO2 Exchange and Ocean Acidification in Coastal Waters Around New Zealand
Supervisor(s): Cliff Law (Dept. of Marine Sciences, University of Otago; NIWA, Wellington), Kim Currie (NIWA-University of Otago Center for Oceanography), John Zeldis (NIWA, Christchurch), Ata Suanda (Dept. of Marine Sciences, University of Otago)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Chemistry, Biochemistry, Portland State University, Portland, Oregon, USA, MSc Chemical Oceanography, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon, USA


  • Vance J. M., Currie K. I., Law C. S., Murdoch J., Zeldis J. (2019) NZOA-ON: the New Zealand Ocean Acidification Observing Network. Marine and Freshwater Research 71, 281-299.

Lisa van Halderen

Thesis Title (MSc): Investigating rāhui in a fisheries management context: what are the available tools, challenges and how can we assess their success?
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn and Anne-Marie Jackson
Previous Degree(s):BSc Zoology, PGDipWLM  

Lisa is 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

Jess Wenley

Thesis Title (MSc): The Role of Subtropical Fronts in Shaping Bacterioplankton Abundance, Viability and Single Cell Activity
Supervisor: Federico Baltar, Sergio Morales
Previous Degree(s): BSc Biochemistry major & Marine Science minor, PGDipSci Marine Science

Lindsay WickmanLindsay

Thesis Title (PhD): The current status of the population of Hector's dolphins at Banks Peninsula: an update on survival rates, reproductive rates, and population size
Supervisor: Steve Dawson, Liz Slooten (Zoology), and Peter Dillingham (Statistics)
Previous Degree(s): BSc Marine Science and Biology, University of Miami

Ben WilliamsBen Williams

Thesis Title (MSc): Restoration of kelp forests (Macrocystis pyrifera) along the Otago coastline
Supervisor: Chris Hepburn and Matt Desmond

Hannah Williams

Thesis Title (MSc): Abundance and distribution of Hector's dolphins in Otago and effectiveness of current protection measures
Supervisor: Will Rayment and Steve Dawson

Uru-Manuka Ming-Cheung Williamswilmi845

Thesis Title (MSc):The effects of sedimentation on the physiology of NZ living Brachiopods
Supervisor:Miles Lamare, Daphne Lee, Jeffrey Robinson
Previous Degree(s):PGDipSc - Marine Science, Bachelor of Science - Marine Science

Rebecca Zitounzitre956

Thesis Title (PhD): Quantification of copper speciation parameters in differing marine environments
Supervisors: Russell Frew (Chemistry) and Abby Smith
Previous Degree(s): Bachelor of Science (Earth Science ), University of Frankfurt, Germany. Master of Science ( Marine Environmental Science), University of Oldenburg, Germany. PGDipSci in Marine Science, University of Otago, New Zealand