Nerida Wilson

Molecular Systematics Unit Manager & Senior Research Scientist

Molecular Systematics Unit

BSc (Hons); PhD


+61 (8) 9212 3844


  • Phylogenetics, phylogeography and population genetics
  • Exploring the evolutionary history of species
  • Delimiting species using molecular data
  • Understanding the drivers of diversification


  • Net Conservation Benefits Project: Conservation Systematics of the Western Pilbara Fauna
  • Investigating biodiversity of aquatic and terrestrial taxa in the western Pilbara using molecular markers.
  • ACE: An Antarctic Circumpolar expedition (2016-2019)
  • Testing the diversity of marine refugia on sub-Antarctic islands

Exhibitions and Public Programs

  • Developing Citizen Science initiatives
  • Contributes to the Molecular Systematics Unit blog.
  • Co-supervisor to post-graduate students at local and national universities.

Selected Publications

Layton, KKS, Gosliner, TM, Wilson, NG. (2018) Flexible colour patterns obscure identification and mimicry in Indo-Pacific Chromodoris nudibranchs (Gastropoda: Chromodorididae). Molecular Phylogenetics & Evolution 124: 27-36.

Strugnell, J, Pedro, J, Wilson, NG (2018). Dating Antarctic ice sheet collapse: proposing a molecular genetic approach. Quaternary Science Reviews 179:153-157.

Winters, AE, Green, N, Wilson, NG, How, M, Garson, MJ, Marshall, J, and Cheney, K. (2017). Relaxed selection on individual pattern elements may allow phenotypic variation of aposematic signals. Proceedings of the Royal Society B. 284: 20170926

Wilson, NG, Jörger KM, Brenzinger, B and Schrödl, M (2017). Phylogenetic placement of the enigmatic worm-like Rhodopemorpha slugs as basal Heterobranchia. Journal of Molluscan Studies 83(4): 399-408.

Rouse, GW, Stiller, J, Wilson, NG (2017). First live records of the ruby seadragon (Phyllopteryx dewysea, Syngnathidae). Marine Biodiversity Records 10: 2.

Stiller, J, Wilson, NG, Donellan, S, Rouse, GW (2017). The leafy seadragon, Phycodurus eques, a flagship species with low but structured genetic variability. Journal of Heredity 108(2): 152-162.

Wilson NG, Stiller J & Rouse GW (2017). Barriers to gene flow in common seadragons (Syngnathidae: Phyllopteryx taeniolatus). Conservation Genetics 18: 53-66.

Strugnell, J, Wilson, NG, Downey, R, Stevens, C, Shaw, J, Baesman, J (2016) Kudos for female Antarctic researchers. Nature (Correspondence) 536: 148

Wilson, NG & Kirkendale, LM (2016). Putting the “Indo” back into the Indo-Pacific: resolving marine phylogeographic gaps. Invertebrate Systematics 30: 86-94.

Rouse, GW, Wilson, NG, Carvajal, JI & Vrijenhoek, RC (2016). New deep-sea species of Xenoturbella and the position of Xenacoelomorpha. Nature 530: 94-97.

Stiller, J, Wilson, NG & Rouse, GW (2015). A spectacular new species of seadragon (Syngnathidae). Royal Society Open Science 2(2), 140458.

Smith, S, Wilson, NG, Goetz, F, Feehery, C, Andrade, S, Rouse, GW, Giribet, G & Dunn, C. (2011) Resolving the evolutionary relationships of molluscs with phylogenomic tools. Nature 480: 364-367.

Deheyn, DD & Wilson, NG (2011) Bioluminescent signals spatially amplified by wavelength-specific diffusion through the shell of a marine snail. Proceedings of the Royal Society, B 278: 2112-2121.