Prof Paul Shaw


Prof Paul Shaw


Institute Director of Post Graduate Studies

Contact Details



I am leader of the Aquatic, Behavioural & Evolutionary Biology (ABEB) research group

My research interests lie in understanding the distribution and maintenance of genetic biodiversity within species (particularly in aquatic systems) using molecular genetic methods, the main aim of such work being to define mechanisms underlying population connectivity, evolution and speciation. The applications of this work are to improve assessment and conservation of genetic biodiversity within exploited (fished) species.
Current interests:

  • genetic management of exploited natural populations and species of potential aquaculture interest (cephalopods and fish)
  • investigating larval dynamics and dispersal in marine species
  • evolution of behavioural / reproductive strategies of aquatic organisms (particularly cephalopods)

My aim is to understand the effect on genetic biodiversity of processes occurring at the level of individuals to populations to species.


Genner, MJ, Nichols, P, Shaw, PW, Carvalho, GR, Robinson, RL & Turner, GF 2010, 'Population structure on breeding grounds of Lake Malawi's 'twilight zone' cichlid fishes' Journal of Biogeography, vol 37, no. 2, pp. 258-269. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2699.2009.02196.x
Hamilton, KM, Morritt, D & Shaw, PW 2010, 'Genetic diversity of the crustacean parasite Hematodinium (Alveolata, Syndinea)' European Journal of Protistology, vol 46, no. 1, pp. 17-28. DOI: 10.1016/j.ejop.2009.10.002
Potts, WM, Sauer, WHH, Henriques, R, Sequesseque, S, Santos, CV & Shaw, PW 2010, 'The biology, life history and management needs of a large sciaenid fish, Argyrosomus coronus, in Angola' African Journal of Marine Science, vol 32, no. 2, pp. 247-258. DOI: 10.2989/1814232X.2010.501567
Hamilton, KM, Shaw, PW & Morritt, D 2009, 'Prevalence and seasonality of Hematodinium (Alveolata: Syndinea) in a Scottish crustacean community' ICES Journal of Marine Science, vol 66, no. 9, pp. 1837-1845. DOI: 10.1093/icesjms/fsp152
Doubleday, ZA, Semmens, JM, Smolenski, AJ & Shaw, PW 2009, 'Microsatellite DNA markers and morphometrics reveal a complex population structure in a merobenthic octopus species (Octopus maorum) in south-east Australia and New Zealand' Marine Biology, vol 156, no. 6, pp. 1183-1192. DOI: 10.1007/s00227-009-1160-y
Ungfors, A, McKeown, NJ, Shaw, PW & Andre, C 2009, 'Lack of spatial genetic variation in the edible crab (Cancer pagurus) in the Kattegat-Skagerrak area' ICES Journal of Marine Science, vol 66, no. 3, pp. 462-469. DOI: 10.1093/icesjms/fsn223
Woodall, LC, Koldewey, HJ, Santos, SV & Shaw, PW 2009, 'First occurrence of the lined seahorse Hippocampus erectus in the eastern Atlantic Ocean' Journal of Fish Biology, vol 75, no. 6, pp. 1505-1512. DOI: 10.1111/j.1095-8649.2009.02371.x
Genner, MJ, Nichols, P, Shaw, PW, Carvalho, GR, Robinson, RL & Turner, GF 2008, 'Genetic homogeneity among breeding grounds and nursery areas of an exploited Lake Malawi cichlid fish' Freshwater Biology, vol 53, no. 9, pp. 1823-1831. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2427.2008.02004.x
Naud, M-J & Shaw, PW 2008, 'Isolation and characterization of highly polymorphic microsatellites in the chokka squid, Loligo reynaudii' Molecular Ecology Resources, vol 8, no. 4, pp. 943-945. DOI: 10.1111/j.1755-0998.2008.02125.x
Mckeown, NJ & Shaw, PW 2008, 'Polymorphic nuclear microsatellite loci for studies of brown crab, Cancer pagurus L.' Molecular Ecology Resources, vol 8, no. 3, pp. 653-655. DOI: 10.1111/j.1471-8286.2007.02033.x
McKeown, NJ & Shaw, PW 2008, 'Single paternity within broods of the brown crab Cancer pagurus: a highly fecund species with long-term sperm storage' Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol 368, pp. 209-215. DOI: 10.3354/meps07634
Genner, MJ, Nichols, P, Carvalho, G, Robinson, RL, Shaw, PW, Smith, A & Turner, GF 2007, 'Evolution of a cichlid fish in a Lake Malawi satellite lake' Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol 274, no. 1623, pp. 2249-2257. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2007.0619
Semmens, JM, Pecl, GT, Gillanders, BM, Waluda, CM, Shea, EK, Jouffre, D, Ichii, T, Zumholz, K, Katugin, ON, Leporati, SC & Shaw, PW 2007, 'Approaches to resolving cephalopod movement and migration patterns' Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries, vol 17, no. 2-3, pp. 401-423. DOI: 10.1007/s11160-007-9048-8
Perez-Losada, M, Nolte, MJ, Crandall, KA & Shaw, PW 2007, 'Testing hypotheses of population structuring in the Northeast Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea using the common cuttlefish Sepia officinalis' Molecular Ecology, vol 16, no. 13, pp. 2667-2679. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2007.03333.x
Genner, MJ, Seehausen, O, Lunt, DH, Joyce, DA, Shaw, PW, Carvalho, GR & Turner, GF 2007, 'Age of cichlids: New dates for ancient lake fish radiations' Molecular Biology and Evolution, vol 24, no. 5, pp. 1269-1282. DOI: 10.1093/molbev/msm050
Weetman, D, Ruggiero, A, Mariani, S, Shaw, PW, Lawler, AR & Hauser, L 2007, 'Hierarchical population genetic structure in the commercially exploited shrimp Crangon crangon identified by AFLP analysis' Marine Biology, vol 151, no. 2, pp. 565-575. DOI: 10.1007/s00227-006-0497-8
Genner, MJ, Nichols, P, Carvalho, GR, Robinson, RL, Shaw, PW & Turner, GF 2007, 'Reproductive isolation among deep-water cichlid fishes of Lake Malawi differing in monochromatic male breeding dress' Molecular Ecology, vol 16, no. 3, pp. 651-662. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2006.03173.x
Hamilton, KM, Morritt, D & Shaw, PW 2007, 'Molecular and histological identification of the crustacean parasite Hematodinium sp (Alveolata, Syndinea) in the shore crab Carcinus maenas' Acta Protozoologica, vol 46, no. 3, pp. 183-192.
Weetman, D, Hauser, L, Bayes, MK, Ellis, JR & Shaw, PW 2006, 'Genetic population structure across a range of geographic scales in the commercially exploited marine gastropod Buccinum undatum' Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol 317, pp. 157-169. DOI: 10.3354/meps317157
Weetman, D, Hauser, L, Shaw, PW & Bayes, MK 2005, 'Microsatellite markers for the whelk Buccinum undatum' Molecular Ecology Notes, vol 5, no. 2, pp. 361-362. DOI: 10.1111/j.1471-8286.2005.00926.x
Naud, M-J, Shaw, PW, Hanlon, RT & Havenhand, JN 2005, 'Evidence for biased use of sperm sources in wild female giant cuttlefish (Sepia apama)' Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol 272, no. 1567, pp. 1047-1051. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2004.3031
Shaw, PW, Arkhipkin, AI & Al-Khairulla, H 2004, 'Genetic structuring of Patagonian toothfish populations in the Southwest Atlantic Ocean: the effect of the Antarctic Polar Front and deep-water troughs as barriers to genetic exchange' Molecular Ecology, vol 13, no. 11, pp. 3293-3303. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2004.02327.x
Healey, AJE, Gouwns, G, Fennessy, ST, Kuguru, B, Sauer, WHH, Shaw, P & McKeown, N 2018, 'Genetic analysis reveals harvested Lethrinus nebulosus in the Southwest Indian Ocean comprise two cryptic species' ICES Journal of Marine Science. DOI: 10.1093/icesjms/fsx245
Woodall, LC, Otero-Ferrer, F, Correia, M, Garrick-Maidment, N, Shaw, P & Koldewey, HJ 2018, 'A synthesis of European seahorse taxonomy, population structure, and habitat use as a basis for assessment, monitoring and conservation' Marine Biology, vol 19, 165. DOI: 10.1007/s00227-017-3274-y
Carreira, GP, McKeown, N, Shaw, P & Gonçalves, JM 2018, 'A PCR-RFLP method for stock assignment in the endemic Macaronesian gastropid, Patella candei d'Orbigny, and its potential for future conservation strategies' Fisheries Research, vol 199, pp. 8-11. DOI: 10.1016/j.fishres.2017.11.011
Joseph, J, Chong, J & Shaw, P 2017, 'Multiple paternity in egg clutches of green turtles in Redang Island and Sabah Turtle Islands Park, Malaysia' Journal of Sustainability Science and Management, vol 12, no. 1, pp. 12-22.
McKeown, N, Taylor, AL & Shaw, P 2017, 'Isolation and characterisation of polymorphic microsatellite loci for studies of the big blue octopus, Octopus cyanea' Marine Biodiversity. DOI: 10.1007/s12526-017-0717-0
Carreira, GP, Shaw, P, Gonçalves, JM & McKeown, NJ 2017, 'Congruent Molecular and Morphological Diversity of Macaronesian Limpets: Insights into eco-evolutionary Forces and Tools for Conservation' Frontiers in Marine Science, vol 4, 75. DOI: 10.3389/fmars.2017.00075
McKeown, N, Hauser, L & Shaw, P 2017, 'Microsatellite genotyping of brown crab Cancer pagurus reveals fine scale selection and 'non-chaotic' genetic patchiness within a high gene flow system' Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol 566, pp. 91-103. DOI: 10.3354/meps12044
Sales, JBDL, Rodrigues-Filho, LFDS, Ferreira, YDS, Carneiro, J, Asp, NE, Shaw, P, Haimovici, M, Markaida, U, Ready, J, Schneider, H & Sampaio, I 2017, 'Divergence of cryptic species of Doryteuthis plei Blainville, 1823 (Loliginidae, Cephalopoda) in the Western Atlantic Ocean is associated with the formation of the Caribbean Sea' Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, vol 106, pp. 44-54. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2016.09.014
McKeown, N, Arkhipkin, AII & Shaw, P 2017, 'Regional genetic population structure and fine scale genetic cohesion in the Southern blue whiting Micromesistius australis' Fisheries Research, vol 185, pp. 176-184. DOI: 10.1016/j.fishres.2016.09.006
Lipinski, M, van der Vyver, F, Shaw, PW & Sauer, WHH 2016, 'Life cycle of Chokka squid Loligo reynaudii in South African waters' African Journal of Marine Science, vol 38, no. 4, pp. 589-593 . DOI: 10.2989/1814232X.2016.1230074
van der Vyver, F, Sauer, WHH, McKeown, NJ, Yemane, D, Shaw, PW & Lipinski, M 2016, 'Phenotypic divergence despite high gene flow in Chokka squid Loligo reynaudii (Cephalopoda: Loliginidae): implications for fishery management' Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, vol 96, pp. 1507-1525 . DOI: 10.1017/S0025315415001794
Henriques, R, Potts, W, Sauer, WH, Santos, CV, Kruger, J, Thomas, JA & Shaw, P 2016, 'Molecular genetic, life-history and morphological variation in a coastal warm-temperature sciaenid fish: Evidence for an upwelling-driven speciation event' Journal of Biogeography, vol 43, no. 9, pp. 1820-1831. DOI: 10.1111/jbi.12829
Blake, M, McKeown, N, Bushell, M & Shaw, P 2016, 'DNA extraction from spider webs' Conservation Genetics Resources, vol 8, no. 3, pp. 219-221. DOI: 10.1007/s12686-016-0537-8
Crookes, S & Shaw, P 2016, 'Isolation by distance and non-identical patterns of gene flow within two river populations of the freshwater fish Rutilus rutilus (L. 1758)' Conservation Genetics, vol 17, pp. 861-874. DOI: 10.1007/s10592-016-0828-3
Naud, M-J, Sauer, WHH, Mckeown, NJ & Shaw, PW 2016, 'Multiple Mating, Paternity and Complex Fertilisation Patterns in the Chokka Squid Loligo reynaudii' PLoS One, vol 11, no. 2, e0146995. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0146995
Harvey, B, Mckeown, NJ, Rastrick, SPS, Bertolini, C, Foggo, A, Graham, H, Hall-Spencer, JM, Milazzo, M, Shaw, PW, Small, DP & Moore, PJ 2016, 'Individual and population-level responses to ocean acidification' Scientific Reports, vol 6, 20194. DOI: 10.1038/srep20194
Woodall, LC, Koldewey, HJ, Boehm, JT & Shaw, P 2015, 'Past and present drivers of population structure in a small coastal fish, the European long snouted seahorse Hippocampus guttulatus' Conservation Genetics, vol 16, no. 5, pp. 1139-1153. DOI: 10.1007/s10592-015-0728-y
McKeown, N, Robin, J-P & Shaw, P 2015, 'Species-specific PCR-RFLP for identification of early life history stages of squid and other applications to fisheries research.' Fisheries Research, vol 167, pp. 207-209. DOI: 10.1016/j.fishres.2015.02.007
McKeown, N, Arkhipkin, AII & Shaw, P 2015, 'Integrating genetic and otolith microchemistry data to understand population structure in the Patagonian Hoki (Macruronus magellanicus).' Fisheries Research, vol 164, pp. 1-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.fishres.2014.10.004
Henriques, R, Potts, W, Sauer, W & Shaw, P 2015, 'Incipient genetic isolation of a temperate migratory coastal Sciaenid fish (Argyrosomus inodorus) within the Benguela Cold Current system' Marine Biology Research, vol 11, no. 4, pp. 423-429. DOI: 10.1080/17451000.2014.952309
Iwata, Y, Sakurai, Y & Shaw, P 2015, 'Dimorphic sperm transfer traits for alternative mating tactics in loliginid squid.' Journal of Molluscan Studies, vol 81, no. 1, pp. 147-151. DOI: 10.1093/mollus/eyu072
McKeown, N & Shaw, P 2014, 'Microsatellite loci for studies of the common cuttlefish, Sepia officinalis' Conservation Genetics Resources, vol 6, no. 3, pp. 701-703. DOI: 10.1007/s12686-014-0191-y
Potts, WM, Henriques, R, Santos, CV, Munnik, K, Ansorge, I, Dufois, F, Booth, AJ, Kirchner, C, Sauer, WHH & Shaw, PW 2014, 'Ocean warming, a rapid distributional shift, and the hybridization of a coastal fish species' Global Change Biology, vol 20, no. 9, pp. 2765-2777. DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12612
Sales, JBL, Markaida, U, Shaw, PW, Haimovici, M, Ready, JS, Figueredo-Ready, WMB, Angioletti, F, Carneiro, MA, Schneider, H & Sampaio, I 2014, 'Molecular Phylogeny of the Genus Lolliguncula Steenstrup, 1881 Based on Nuclear and Mitochondrial DNA Sequences Indicates Genetic Isolation of Populations from North and South Atlantic, and the Possible Presence of Further Cryptic Species' PLoS One, vol 9, no. 2, e88693. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0088693
Henriques, R, Potts, WM, Santos, CV, Sauer, WHH & Shaw, PW 2014, 'Population Connectivity and Phylogeography of a Coastal Fish, Atractoscion aequidens (Sciaenidae), across the Benguela Current Region: Evidence of an Ancient Vicariant Event' PLoS One, vol 9, no. 2, e87907. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0087907
Cox, K, Thomaes, A, Antonini, G, Zilioli, M, De Gelas, K, Harvey, D, Solano, E, Audisio, P, McKeown, N, Shaw, P, Minetti, R, Bartolozzi, L & Mergeay, J 2013, 'Testing the performance of a fragment of the COI gene to identify western Palaearctic stag beetle species (Coleoptera, Lucanidae)' ZooKeys, vol 365, pp. 105-126. DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.365.5526
Gíslason, ÓS, Pálsson, S, McKeown, N, Halldórsson, HP, Shaw, P & Svavarsson, J 2013, 'Genetic variation in a newly established population of the Atlantic rock crab Cancer irroratus in Iceland' Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol 494, pp. 219-230. DOI: 10.3354/meps10537
Juárez, OE, Rosas, C, Arena, L, Enríquez, L, Camarena, F, McKeown, N & Shaw, P 2013, 'Characterization of microsatellite loci developed for the Mexican four-eyed octopus Octopus maya' Conservation Genetics Resources, vol 5, no. 3, pp. 803-805. DOI: 10.1007/s12686-013-9912-x
de Luna Sales, JB, Shaw, P, Haimovici, M, Markaida, U, Cunha, RL, Ready, J, Figueiredo-Ready, WMB, Schneider, H & Sampaio, I 2013, 'New molecular phylogeny of the squids of the family Loliginidae with emphasis on the genus Doryteuthis Naef, 1912: Mitochondrial and nuclear sequences indicate the presence of cryptic species in the southern Atlantic Ocean' Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, vol 68, no. 2, pp. 293-299. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2013.03.027
Taylor, AL, McKeown, NJ & Shaw, PW 2012, 'Molecular identification of three co-occurring and easily misidentified octopus species using PCR-RFLP techniques' Conservation Genetics Resources, vol 4, no. 4, pp. 885-887. DOI: 10.1007/s12686-012-9665-y
Nyström, V, Humphrey, J, Skoglund, P, McKeown, NJ, Vartanyan, S, Shaw, PW, Lidén, K, Jakobsson, M, Barnes, I, Angerbjörn, A, Lister, A & Dalén, L 2012, 'Microsatellite genotyping reveals end-Pleistocene decline in mammoth autosomal genetic variation' Molecular Ecology, vol 21, no. 14, pp. 3391-3402. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2012.05525.x
Shaw, PW, Hendrickson, L, McKeown, NJ, Stonier, T, Naud, M-J & Sauer, WHH 2012, 'Population structure of the squid Doryteuthis (Loligo) pealeii on the eastern coast of the USA: Reply to Gerlach et al (2012)' Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol 450, pp. 285-287. DOI: 10.3354/meps09652
Henriques, R, Potts, WM, Sauer, WHH & Shaw, PW 2012, 'Evidence of deep genetic divergence between populations of an important recreational fishery species, Lichia amia L. 1758, around southern Africa' African Journal of Marine Science, vol 34, no. 4, pp. 585-591. DOI: 10.2989/1814232X.2012.749809
Iwata, Y, Shaw, P, Fujiwara, E, Shiba, K, Kakiuchi, Y & Hirohashi, N 2011, 'Why small males have big sperm: dimorphic squid sperm linked to alternative mating behaviours' BMC Evolutionary Biology, vol 11, no. 1, pp. 236-244. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2148-11-236
Woodall, LC, Koldewey, HJ & Shaw, PW 2011, 'Serial monogamy in the European long-snouted seahorse Hippocampus guttulatus' Conservation Genetics, vol 12, no. 6, pp. 1645-1649. DOI: 10.1007/s10592-011-0253-6
Henriques, R, McKeown, NJ & Shaw, PW 2011, 'Isolation of 12 microsatellite markers for geelbeck (Atractoscion aequidens (Cuvier, 1860), Sciaenidae), an overexploited marine fish' Conservation Genetics Resources, vol 4, no. 1, pp. 85-87. DOI: 10.1007/s12686-011-9480-x
Woodall, LC, Koldewey, HJ & Shaw, PW 2011, 'Historical and contemporary population genetic connectivity of the European short-snouted seahorse Hippocampus hippocampus and implications for management' Journal of Fish Biology, vol 78, no. 6, pp. 1738-1756. DOI: 10.1111/j.1095-8649.2011.02974.x
Joseph, J & Shaw, PW 2011, 'Multiple paternity in egg clutches of hawksbill turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata)' Conservation Genetics, vol 12, no. 2, pp. 601-605. DOI: 10.1007/s10592-010-0168-7
Shaw, PW, Hendrickson, L, McKeown, N, Stonier, T, Naud, MJ & Sauer, WHH 2010, 'Discrete spawning aggregations of loliginid squid do not represent genetically distinct populations' Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol 408, pp. 117-127. DOI: 10.3354/meps08593
Hamilton, KM, Shaw, PW & Morritt, D 2010, 'Physiological responses of three crustacean species to infection by the dinoflagellate-like protist Hematodinium (Alveolata: Syndinea)' Journal of Invertebrate Pathology, vol 105, no. 2, pp. 194-196. DOI: 10.1016/j.jip.2010.06.007