Nicholas Dunn MRes.

Imperial College London


My Ph.D. project will assess the distribution of elasmobranchs (sharks and rays) by developing environmental DNA methods.

It addresses key methodological questions and explores innovative uses of eDNA techniques to identify elasmobranch species in the ocean.The study of eDNA is a quick non-invasive method for assessing the presence and distribution of marine species through the extraction and sequencing of genetic material present in water samples. Because of its non-invasive nature, species do not need to be observed or captured for their presence to be recorded. This makes the technique ideal for the study of elusive and cryptic species such as sharks and rays.

I will investigate how variations in eDNA sampling techniques impacts the detection rates of elasmobranch species and how eDNA can be used to complement current elasmobranch research in the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT). The ability to detect species from water samples has the potential to revolutionize marine monitoring, particularly for rare and elusive species like sharks and rays.

I hope that the research I do will help conserve these incredible species that are so important for the health of our oceans.

Nicholas Dunn


2018 Present
Ph.D. candidate, SSCP DTP, Institute of Zoology and Imperial College London
2018 2018
Volunteer research Assistant, James Cook University
2016 2017
MRes. Ecology, Evolution and Conservation , Silwood Park, Imperial College London
2013 2016
BSc., Zoology, Imperial College London

My Project

  • Sentinel Species Research
    The Importance of BIOT for Pelagic Predators in the Indian Ocean

My Publications