Postdoctoral Fellow

Profile photo of Chris Dudgeon

Phone+61 7 5460 1995
Room311A, Building 8106

Christine (Chris) is a postdoctoral researcher in the School of Veterinary Science, University of Queensland (since March 2011). Chris’ research interests fall under the broad umbrella of population ecology and dynamics of marine organisms, with current focus on large marine vertebrates; including sharks, rays, whales and dugongs.  She employs a suite of techniques, including acoustic telemetry, mark-recapture analysis, molecular genetics and statistical modelling, to investigate what comprises a population, how this changes in space and time, and the application of this knowledge to conservation and fisheries management.

Chris studied zoology, marine biology and molecular ecology for her undergraduate at James Cook University in Townsville (1998).  She then worked on several projects investigating molecular ecology of coral reef organisms at JCU and AIMS before undertaking a PhD on the population ecology of leopard sharks at the University of Queensland (2009).

Chris currently splits her time between conducting research and small child-wrangling. 


  • Population ecology of leopard sharks Stegostoma fasciatum on the east coast of Australia: migratory movements and genetic effective population size estimates (funded by Sea World Research and Rescue Foundation).
  • Photo-identification of leopard sharks for investigating migratory movements and longevity: Spot the Leopard Shark.
  • Modelling heterogeneity concerning the detectability of humpback whales during land-based and aerial surveys to improve humpback abundance estimates (funded by Australian Marine Mammal Centre). This project is part of the east Australian humpback population abundance project.
  • Abundance and demography of giant mantas, whale sharks, seven-gills sharks and grey-nurse sharks using mark-recapture methods. 

Selected Publications

  • Allen GR, Erdmann MV, Dudgeon CL (2013). Hemiscyllium Halmahera, a new species of bamboo shark (Hemiscyllidae) from Indonesia. Aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology 19: 123-136.

  • Dudgeon CL, Lanyon JM, Semmens JM (2013). Seasonality and site-fidelity of the zebra shark Stegostoma fasciatum in southeast Queensland, Australia. Animal Behaviour 85: 471-481.
  • Dudgeon CL, White WT (2012). First record of potential Batesian mimicry in an elasmobranch: juvenile zebra sharks mimic banded sea snakes? Marine and Freshwater Research 63: 545-551.

  • Dudgeon CL, Blower DC, Broderick D, Giles JL, Holmes BJ, Kashiwagi T, Krück NC, Morgan JAT, Tillett BJ, Ovenden JR (2012). A review of the application of molecular genetics for fisheries management and conservation of sharks and rays. Journal of Fish Biology, 80: 1789-1843.

  • Marshall AD, Dudgeon CL, Bennett MB (2011). Size and structure of a photographically identified population of manta rays Manta alfredi in southern Mozambique. Marine Biology,158(5): 1111-1124.

  • Dudgeon CL (2009). The Ecology of the Zebra Shark Stegostoma fasciatum. PhD Thesis, University of Queensland.

  • Dudgeon CL, Broderick D, Ovenden JR (2009). IUCN classification zones concord with, but underestimate, the population genetic structure of the zebra shark Stegostoma fasciatum in the Indo-West Pacific. Molecular Ecology, 18(2): 248-261.

  • Dudgeon CL, Noad MJ, Lanyon JM (2008). Abundance and demography of a seasonal aggregation of zebra sharks Stegostoma fasciatum. Marine Ecology-Progress Series, 368: 269-281.

  • Dudgeon CL, Feldheim K, Schick M, Ovenden JR (2006). Polymorphic microsatellite loci for the zebra shark Stegostoma fasciatum. Molecular Ecology Notes, 6(4): 1086-1088.

  • van Herwerden L, Choat JH, Dudgeon CL, Carlos G, Newman SJ, Frisch A, van Oppen (2006). Contrasting patterns of genetic structure in two species of the coral trout Plectropomus (Serranidae) from east and west Australia: Introgressive hybridisation or ancestral polymorphisms. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 41(2): 420-435.

  • Munday PL, van Herwerden L, Dudgeon CL (2004). Evidence for sympatric speciation by host shift in the sea. Current Biology, 14(16): 1498-1504.

  • Dudgeon CL, Gust N, Blair D (2000). No apparent genetic basis to demographic differences in scarid fishes across continental shelf of the Great Barrier Reef. Marine Biology, 137(5-6): 1059-1066.

Other Reports

  • Dunlop R, Dudgeon CL, Noad MJ (2010). Further investigation into abundance estimates of migrating humpback whales in Australia: resolving unmodelled heterogeneity, estimating g(0) and producing new abundance estimates for both populations. Final report to the Australian Marine Mammal Centre.


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