Malcolm Francis


Principal Scientist

National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research

Malcolm Francis is a fisheries scientist, fish biologist and marine ecologist. His research focuses on estuarine, inshore and pelagic fishes, with emphasis on shark biology and behaviour. He has carried out research on the biodiversity, distribution and abundance of Kermadec Islands reef fishes, resulting from four previous research expeditions to the islands. He is an underwater photographer, and author of three books on New Zealand rocky reefs, coastal fishes, and sharks and rays.

What do you hope to achieve on this expedition to the Kermadecs?

Find and identify tropical fish species that have not previously been recorded from New Zealand. Gain a better understanding of the fish fauna of these fascinating subtropical islands Capture the unique underwater marine life in digital images

What skills are you bringing to this expedition?

I have extensive experience of diving at the Kermadecs and detailed knowledge of the reef fish fauna of the Kermadecs. I am also bringing expertise in underwater photography.

When you’re not on an expedition what does a “day at work” look like for you?

My work mainly involves researching inshore fishes and sharks. This requires collection of data at sea (for example deploying electronic tags on great white sharks), analysing the data back in the office, writing scientific reports and papers describing the results, and presenting results to conferences and fisheries managers.