I’m a systematic ichthyologist and taxonomist with an interest in evolution, speciation, and biogeography of coral reef fishes, particularly fishes in the family Labridae. More specifically, I describe and name new species of fishes, classify them, and work out their evolutionary history and relationships with other species. I received my PhD in systematic ichthyology at the University of Sydney, where I did my undergraduate degree. I am now a postdoctoral fellow at the Australian Museum.
Growing up, my father had a strong influence in what would become my eventual obsession with tropical fishes. I started dabbling in freshwater aquariums at age nine and progressed quickly to saltwater reef aquariums by age sixteen. While I enjoyed reef keeping tremendously, I found myself gradually drawn towards science communication. In particular, I wanted to bridge the divide between science and hobby.
Over the last decade I’ve been heavily involved in the marine aquarium industry as a writer, editor, and blogger, amassing close to 500 online and print articles under the pseudonym Lemon TYK. These experiences have taken me all over the world, interviewing, immersing, and walking in the shoes of like-minded people. I enjoy macro photography in my free time, and while most of my photographs are of reef fishes, I devote a great deal of time and interest toward butterfly photography. When I’m not working on fishes or getting myself wet, you’ll find me in the tropical rainforests of Asia chasing after them.