Key Info

  • Position Title
    Technical Officer, Ichthyology
  • Section
    Ichthyology Collection
    Life and Geosciences
    Australian Museum Research Institute

Email Kerryn Parkinson

Kerryn is particularly interested in the taxonomy of Syngnathids (seahorses, pipefish, sea dragons and pipehorses) and photography of larval fish specimens. Kerryn's Masters thesis focused on the mechanisms that support the resilience of populations in an ever changing environment, for three species of pipefish from the family Syngnathidae. Kerryn is especially interested in the aging of fishes using otoliths and has worked extensively on ‘vagrant’ fishes transported down the east Australian coast courtesy of the Eastern Australian Current.

Kerryn has over 25 years experience in both the field and lab, teaching and overseeing volunteers and students (undergraduates, honours and PhD), working in ichthyology and entomology research collections, maintaining collection databases, photographing and identifying specimens and assisting with taxonomic and ecological research.

As a member of the team in the Ichthyology section, her role involves collection management, sorting, preserving, identifying and data-basing of specimens. Kerryn is involved in the x-ray, dissection, photography and collection of tissue samples from specimens. She has planned, organised and participated in field trips in both Australia and overseas including the Philippines and New Zealand. Kerryn assists visiting scientists from all over the world in addition to sending specimens on loan to scientists for further taxonomic research.


Bachelor of Science 1997 (Marine Biology & Environmental Biology), Flinders University, South Australia

Master of Science 2004 University of Technology, Sydney

Thesis title: Age, growth and population ecology of three species of pipefish (family: Syngnathidae) from seagrass habitat in Botany Bay, New South Wales.


  • Thieme, P., Schnell, N.K., Parkinson, K., and Moritz, T., (2022) Morphological characters in light of new molecular phylogenies: the caudal-fin skeleton of OvalentariaR. Soc. open sci. 9211605211605
  • DiBattista, J.D., Riley, I.J., Fowler, A.M., Reader, S., Hay, A., Parkinson, K., and Hobbs, J.-P.A. (2022) The use of environmental DNA to monitor impacted coastal estuaries. Marine Pollution Bulletin 181: 113860. Abstract
  • DiBattista, J.D., Shalders, T., Reader, S., Hay, A., Parkinson, K., Williams, R.J., Stuart-Smith, J., and McGrouther, M. (2022) A comprehensive analysis of all known fishes from Sydney Harbour. Marine Pollution Bulletin 185: 114239. Full text
  • Fowler, A. M., Parkinson, K., & Booth, D. J. (2018). New poleward observations of 30 tropical reef fishes in temperate southeastern Australia. Marine Biodiversity, 48(4), 2249–2254.
  • Parkinson, K. L., & Booth, D. J. (2016). Rapid growth and short life spans characterize pipefish populations in vulnerable seagrass beds. Journal of Fish Biology, 88(5), 1847–1855.
  • Booth, D. J., Gribben, P., & Parkinson, K. (2015). Impact of cigarette butt leachate on tidepool snails. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 95 (1), 362–364.
  • McGowan, N., Fowler, A. M., Parkinson, K., Bishop, D. P., Ganio, K., Doble, P. A., … Hare, D. J. (2014). Beyond the transect: An alternative microchemical imaging method for fine scale analysis of trace elements in fish otoliths during early life. Science of the Total Environment, 494495, 177–186.
  • Parkinson, K. L., Booth, D. J. and Lee, J. E. (2012), Validation of otolith daily increment formation for two temperate syngnathid fishes: the pipefishes Stigmatopora argus and Stigmatopora nigra. Journal of Fish Biology, 80: 698–704. doi: 10.1111/j.1095-8649.2011.03194.x
  • Booth, D.J. and K. Parkinson, 2011. Pelagic larval duration is similar across 23 degrees of latitude for two species of butterflyfish (Chaetodontidae) in eastern Australia. Coral Reefs. doi: 10.1007/s00338-011-0815-6.
  • Ferraris, Carl J.; McGrouther, M. A.; Parkinson, K. L., 2000. A critical review of the types and putative types of southern Asian marine and freshwater fish species in the Australian Museum named by Francis Day. Records of the Australian Museum 52 (3): 289–306.