The Team

The Super Natural History team is a truly global team. With experts in environmental DNA from Europe and Australasia all turning their attention to the waters of Loch Ness, if the monster is there this team will find it!


UniversitY of Otago, Project Leader

Neil Gemmell

Neil is one of New Zealand’s leading scientists and holds the AgResearch Leading Thinker’s Chair in Reproduction and Genomics at the University of Otago. His lifelong passion for the sea, and desire to innovate, has led Neil to use cutting edge genetic approaches, such as eDNA, to address conservation, environmental, biosecurity and fisheries related issues.


University of Otago

Michael Knapp

At the University of Otago Michael has formed a research group whose work ranges from recovering and analysing DNA from fossil remains to new technology to help survey biodiversity in hard to monitor environments like oceans or large lakes.


University of Otago

Gert-Jan Jeunen

Gert-Jan is currently completing his PhD at the University of Otago, where he is looking at ways to use eDNA to monitor marine biodiversity.


University of Canberra

Dianne Gleeson

Over the last 18 years Dianne has researched the application of DNA technologies in conservation projects in New Zealand and Australia. She currently leads a team at the Institute for Applied Ecology, University of Canberra, which is focused on using eDNA to detect individual species and analyse entire populations in freshwater.


The Loch Ness Project

Adrian Shine

Adrian has been involved in fieldwork in the Scottish highlands since1973. He is currently the leader of the Loch Ness Project. His studies of the loch and nearby lochs look at subjects that range from the biodiversity of the lochs through to the physics of large lakes. In 1987, Adrian organised "Operation Deepscan”which used sonar to sweep the entire loch and attracted worldwide media attention to became a world media event.


Natural History Museum of Denmark, University of Copenhagen

Tom Gilbert

Tom is currently the Professor of Palaeogenomics at the Natural History Museum of Denmark. There he has built a research group who use techniques like eDNA to explore subjects such as evolution and archaeology.


Natural History Museum of Denmark, University of Copenhagen

Kristine Bohmann

Kristine both founded and is the scientific leader of the DNAmark DNA reference database project at the Natural History Museum of Denmark. Kristine’s research uses eDNA analysis for diet and biodiversity assessments.


Laboratoire d’Ecologie Alpine Grenoble

Pierre Taberlet

Beginning as a school biology teacher in the 70s and 80s, Pierre has become a prize-winning scientist in the field of molecular ecology. He is the author or co-author of more than 250 scientific publications. Most recently Pierre has become involved in studying biodiversity through soil and water samples using the latest genetic sequencing technology.


University of California Santa Cruz

Beth Shapiro

The co-Director of the Paleogenomics Laboratory at the University of California Santa Cruz and the Director for Evolutionary Biology at the UCSC Genomics Institute. Beth is an evolutionary biologist who specialises in the genetics of Ice Age animals and plants.


The Rivers and Lochs Institute at Inverness College UHI,
part of the University of the Highlands and Islands

Eric Verspoor

Professor Verspoor is director of the Rivers and Lochs Institute. He is an internationally recognised researcher in the field of aquatic biodiversity science and management. He has over 35 years of research and advisory experience and, prior to joining the Rivers and Lochs Institute, headed the Scottish Government fish genetics research group at the Freshwater Laboratory in Pitlochry.


The Rivers and Lochs Institute at Inverness College UHI,
part of the University of the Highlands and Islands

Lucio Marcello

Lucio is a molecular ecologist at the Rivers and Lochs Institute. His current work includes using eDNA to investigate the impact of freshwater barriers on fish migration as part of AMBER, a pan-European project aimed at developing tools to understand and promote river connectivity.


university of hull

Lori Lawson Handley

Lori is a senior lecturer in ecology and evolution in the Evolutionary and Environmental Genomics Group (EvoHull). She has been using eDNA in her research for several years with a particular interest in the monitoring and impact of invasive non-native species. She has been developing tools for assessing the diversity of fish and macroinvertebrates in waterbodies.


University of Hull

Bernd Hänfling

Bernd is a senior lecturer and research group leader at the University of Hull. Over the last 20 years he has applied genetic and genomic approaches to study a wide range of ecological and evolutionary processes in aquatic ecosystems and populations. Recently he has worked with the UK Environment Agencies to develop an eDNA based monitoring tool for lake fish communities in the UK.



Cristina Di Muri

Cristina is a PhD student at the University of Hull (EvoHull Group). She is working with eDNA techniques to monitor priority conservation fish species within the UK freshwaters with the aim of assess/improve the efficiency of eDNA protocols for rare taxa detection.


Johns Hopkins University

Jennifer Lu

Jennifer is a Biomedical Engineering PhD student at Johns Hopkins University. Her research looks at using next generation sequencing for diagnosing bacterial, fungal and viral infections in humans.