Position: Postdoctoral research fellow, Field: Marine science, Organisation: Leigh Marine Laboratory, University of Auckland
Jenni grew up at Piha beach on Auckland’s west coast, where she developed a passion for the ocean. She attended Avondale College in Auckland and left knowing she wanted to pursue a career in science. Jenni graduated from the University of Auckland with a BSc in biological science specialising in marine science. She went on to study for her master’s degree at the Leigh Marine Laboratory, but this was subsequently upgraded to a PhD, which she completed in 2011. During her student years, Jenni also completed diving certifications, which are vital for doing marine research.
Nearly every day, there is something new to discover or investigate. I get to travel to great locations around the world and work with interesting and prestigious people.
Jenni’s research has looked at how underwater reef sound affects the behaviour of larval crabs. Crab larvae develop in open water, which allows the crabs to settle new habitats. Jenni discovered that crabs use reef sound as a cue to begin settling and metamorphosing. She is now investigating how crab larvae hear these sounds and how far the sound of the reef can travel. Jenni wants to find out over what distance crabs can use acoustic cues. This is part of wider research at the Leigh Marine Laboratory into how marine organisms respond to underwater sound.
Jenni’s work has led to opportunities to travel and meet internationally renowned professionals, scientists and students interested in similar areas of research. For example, in August 2010, she attended The Second International Conference on the Effects of Noise on Aquatic Life in Cork, Ireland.
In her spare time, Jenni heads for the outdoors. She loves diving, tramping, fishing and snowboarding.
After her time at Leigh Marine Laboratory, Jenni took up a position as a postdoctoral scientist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) where she continues to focus on soundscape ecology and sound production in fishes and invertebrates.
This article is based on information current in 2011 and updated in 2018.