Marine invertebrates


Jetty pylon at Point Turton, Yorke Peninsula, South Australia with a colony of blue ascidians (Clavelina molluccensis), sponges and brown algae.

Research overview 

The diversity of marine invertebrates is so immense that our current research focus is limited to a few groups of organisms, but the vast scope of the Marine Invertebrates Collection ensures that there is enormous potential for further research well into the future. In more recent years, the evolution of groups such as polychaete worms and featherstars (crinoids), have been the subject of study. Other research continues with aquatic (marine and freshwater) amphipods and the hemichordates.

Dr Rachael King, Research Scientist, specialises in crustacean systematics, including marine and freshwater representatives. She is an Affiliated Lecturer at the University of Adelaide, working within the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology group. Current projects include the exploration, description and examination of the evolutionary relationships among freshwater amphipods (Chiltoniidae) from mound springs and ground water systems across Australia; systematics of terrestrial and marine isopods; and systematics of marine and freshwater amphipods.

 Arcturid isopod. Image: Rachael King.

An undescribed species of Astacilla (arcturid isopod) from Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia.

 Dr Andrea Crowther, a Collection Manager in Marine Invertebrates, has research interests in sea anemones.

Ms Shirley Sorokin is a Collection Manager with research expertise in marine sponges.

Dr Wolfgang Zeidler, an Honorary Research Associate, researches marine amphipods. His studies concentrate on a world revision of the group Hyperiidea (Crustacea: Amphipoda). He has also published widely on new jellyfish species (mainly Hydromedusa).

Sea star. Image: Thierry Laperousaz.

Sea star (Nectria saoria) on a rock wall,  Western River Cove, Kangaroo Island, South Australia.