Dr. Roberta D’Archino

Marine Biologist, NIWA

Roberta is a macroalgal taxonomist based at NIWA in Wellington. She has worked on the New Zealand macroalgae for the last 15 years discovering many new genera and species. Roberta became interested in algal taxonomy in Italy, studying Mediterranean macroalgae and for her PhD studying the macroalgae of Kenya and Tanzania.

Her research involves scientific diving and collection, anatomical and morphological investigations, molecular biology, algal cultures and ecological assessments. She is particularly interested in red algal reproduction and life histories. Recently she investigated the use of machine learning for the recognition of habitat-forming brown macroalgae from underwater videos.

Roberta has worked on a diverse range of projects and areas in New Zealand, including Three Kings, Stewart Island, Fiordland and she has a good understanding of the NZ flora in different regions. Since 2008 Roberta has been involved regularly in biosecurity marine surveillances in New Zealand harbours to detect introduced species.

Roberta has been involved in school programmes, bioblitz and community snorkelling to promote seaweed.