Gerry Allen has had a long-standing involvement with the Australian Society for Fish Biology, including having served as the seventh President of the Society from 1979 to 1981. He received K. Radway Allen Medal in 2004 in recognition of his outstanding scientific contributions to Ichthyology and he was awarded life membership of the ASFB.
Gerry is considered one of Australia’s prominent Ichthyologists. During his career, he has focused on the systematics, biogeography and ecology of Indo-Pacific coral reef fishes and freshwater fishes of Australia and New Guinea. To date, he has 437 publications, including 32 books and 312 papers on marine and freshwater fishes.
Born in Los Angeles Dr Allen obtained his PhD in marine zoology from the University of Hawaii in 1971. He was enticed by Australia’s diverse yet poorly documented coral reef fauna, moving with his wife to Sydney in 1972 to work as an Ichthyologist at the Australian Museum. In 1974 he moved to Perth to begin a long and productive career as Curator of Fishes at the Western Australian Museum. Leaving the museum in 1997, Dr Allen moved to Conservation International working as a Science Team Leader undertaking coral reef fish surveys in Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and the Philippines until 2003.
Currently Dr Allen is a Research Associate of the Western Australian Museum and a consultant to Conservation International, World Wildlife Fund and the Nature Conservancy. Dr Allen is a member of a number of professional societies. He was the first Australian to be an Honorary Foreign Member of the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists and he is a Patron of the Australia New Guinea Fishes Association. Throughout his career, Dr Allen has travelled extensively and has logged over 7500 dives, predominantly in the Indo-Pacific region.
His passion for SCUBA diving, in conjunction with a keen interest in underwater photography, has led to hundreds of his photographs appearing in a broad range of international publications. Other interests and pursuits outside the marine environment include bird watching, rock climbing, mountaineering and bicycle racing, for which he has been eight-time state veteran champion.
Dr Allen remains very active in describing new species. Last year he described 15 new species from the ASFB Newsletter Volume 39 (# 1) 36 June 2009 Bird's Head region of Western New Guinea. In a novel approach to raising funds for conservation, Conservation International auctioned off the naming rights for 10 of the species. The event was hosted by Prince Albert of Monaco and Christie’s Auction House of London and took place in Monaco in September last year. The auction raised 2.1 million dollars for Conservation International’s Bird's Head Conservation Project, with Prince Albert buying the rights to one of the species’ names. A portion of the m oney was also invested in scholarships for Indonesian marine science students.
Dr Allen’s most recent achievements include mapping and analysing the distributions of all Indo-Pacific coral reef fishes. This research included analysing the distribution patterns of 3919 species and prioritising areas of exceptionally high diversity and endemism for conservation (Allen 2007). Currently he is working on a two-volume work on Coral Reef Fishes of the East Indies that will cover more than 2,500 species.
Prepared by Cordelia Moore
A Selection of His References
Allen GR (1987g) Pomacentridae. In 'Smith's Sea Fishes,'. (Eds MM Smith and PC Heemstra) pp. 671-682. (Macmillan South Africa)
Allen GR (1987h) Synopsis of the circumtropical fish genus Lutjanus (Lutjanidae). In 'Biology and fisheries management of tropical groupers and snappers,'. (Eds S Ralston and JJ Polovina) pp. 33-87. (Boulder, Colorado, Westview Press)
Allen GR (1993a) Cardinalfishes (Apogonidae) of Madang Province, Papua New Guinea, with descriptions of three new species Rev. fr. Aquariol. 20, 9-20.
Allen GR (1993b) Fishes of Ashmore Reef and Cartier Island. Part VII. Marine faunal surveys of Ashmore Reef and Cartier Island North-western Australia. P.F.Berry (ed.). . Rec. West. Aust. Mus. Suppl. 44, 67-91
Allen GR (1997a) Coat of many colours. In. (Eds T Tomascik, AJ Mah, A Nontji and KM Moosa) pp. 1100. (Periplus Editions, Singapore)
Allen GR (1997b) The damselfish: Indonesia’s most abundant family of coral reef fish. In 'The Ecology of the Indonesian Seas. Part Two'. (Eds T Tomascik, AJ Mah, A Nontji and KM Moosa) pp. 1095-1098. (Periplus Editions, Singapore)
Allen GR (1997d) Inseparable partners. In 'The Ecology of the Indonesian Seas. Part Two'. (Eds T Tomascik, AJ Mah, A Nontji and KM Moosa) pp. 1099. (Periplus Editions, Singapore)
Allen GR (1998b) Reef and shore fishes of Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea. . In 'A rapid biodiversity assessment of the coral reefs of Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea RAP Working Papers 11'. (Eds TB Werner and GR Allen). (Conservation International, Washington, DC: 39-49, 67-107 )
Allen GR (2000d) Reef and shore fishes of the Calamianes Islands, Palawan Province, Philippines. In 'A rapid marine biodiversity assessment of the Calamianes Islands, Palawan Province, Philippines. RAP Bulletin of Biological Assessment 17.'. (Eds TB Werner and GR Allen) pp. 31-44 and 95-125. (Conservation International, Washington, DC))
Allen GR (2000e) Threatened fishes of the world: Pterapogon kauderni Komans, 1933 (Apogonidae) Environmental Biology of Fishes 57, 142.
Allen GR (2002b) Descriptions of two new species of damsefishes (Pomacentridae: Pomacentrus) from Madagascar. Aqua, J. Ichthyol. Aquatic Biol. 6, 45-52.
Allen GR (2002d) Reef fishes of the Togean and Banggai Islands, Sulawesi, Indonesia. In 'A marine rapid assessment of the Togean and Banggai Islands, Sulawesi, Indonesia. RAP Bulletin of Biological Assessment 20'. (Eds GR Allen and SA McKenna) pp. 44-53 and 98-128 (Conservation International, Washington, DC )
Allen GR (2005) Reef fishes of northwest Madagascar. Chapter 3. In 'A rapid marine biodiversity assessment of Northwest Madagascar. Bulletin of the Rapid Assessment Program 31'. (Eds SA McKenna and GR Allen) pp. 39-48 and 102-124. (Conservation International, Washington, DC)
Allen GR (2007a) Conservation hotspots of biodiversity and endemism for Indo-Pacific coral reef fishes. Aquatic Conservation 17: on line version.
Allen GR (2007b) Fishes of Papua. In: The Ecology of Papua. Part 1. In. (Eds AJ Marshall and BM Beehler) pp. 637-654. (Periplus Editions, Singapore )
Allen GR, Adrim M (2003) Coral reef fishes of Indonesia Zoological Studies 42, 1-72.
Allen GR, Fischer W (1978) Aid to the identification of families occurring in the western central Atlantic. In 'FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Central Atlantic (fishing area 31)'. (Ed. W Fischer) pp. 4-34. (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome. )
Allen GR, Randall JE (1977) A review of the sharpnose pufferfishes (subfamily Canthigasterinae) of the Indo-Pacific Rec. Aust. Mus. 30, 475-517.
Allen GR, Randall JE (1980) A review of the damselfishes (Teleostei: Pomacentridae) of the Red Sea Israel J. Zool. 29, 1-98.
Allen GR, Randall JE (2002c) A review of the leucogaster complex of the Indo-Pacific pomacentrid genus Amblyglyphidodon, with descriptions of two new species. Aqua, Journal of Ichthyology & Aquatic Biology 5, 139-152.
Allen GR, Robertson DR (1997) An annotated checklist of the fishes of Clipperton Atoll, tropical eastern Pacific. Rev. Biol. Trop. 45, 813-843.
Allen GR, Seeto P, McGarry T (2003) Condition of coral reefs in Milne Bay Province. Chapter 2. . In 'A rapid marine biodiversity assessment of Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea – Survey II (2000). RAP Bulletin of Biological Assessment 29'. (Eds GR Allen, JP Kinch, SA McKenna and P Seeto) pp. 27-38. (Conservation International, Washington, DC)
Allen GR, Smith-Vaniz WF (1994) Fishes of Cocos (Keelling) Islands Atoll Research Bull. 412, 1-21.
Allen GR, Starck II WA (1973a) 1973. A new species of butterfly fish (Chaetodontidae) from the Palau Islands Trop. Fish Hobbyist 21, 17-28.
Allen GR, Talbot FH (1985) Review of the snappers of the genus Lutjanus Pisces: Lutjanidae) from the Indo-Pacific, with the description of a new species. Indo-Pacific Fishes 11, 1-87.
Allen GR, Woods LP (1980) A review of the damselfish genus Stegastes of the eastern Pacific with the description of a new species Rec. West. Aust. Mus. 8, 171-198.
Anderson WD, Allen GR (2001) Lutjanidae In 'FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes. The living marine resources of the western central Pacific. Volume 5. Bony fishes part 3 (Menidae to Pomacentridae). '. (Eds KE Carpenter and VH Niem) pp. 2840-2918. (Rome: FAO)
Bechtel J, Werner TB, Llewellyn G, Salm RV, Allen GR (2004) Coral Triangle. Chapter 4. In 'Defying ocean’s end: an agenda for action'. (Eds LK Glover and SA Earle) pp. 89-104. (Island Press, Washington, DC)
Lessios HA, Allen GR, Wellington GM, Bermingham E (1995) Genetic and orphological evidence that the eastern Pacific damselfish Abudefduf declivifrons is distinct from A. concolor (Pomacentridae) Copeia 1995, 277-288.
Madin LP, Grassle F, et al. (2004) The unknown ocean. Chapter 12. In 'Defying ocean’s end: an agenda for action'. (Eds LK Glover and SA Earle) pp. 213-236. (Island Press, Washington, DC)
Paxton JP, Allen GR, Hoese DF (2006) Australian Marine Fishes: Zoogeography, Endemics, and Conservation. Chapter 9. In 'Evolution and Biogeography of Australasian Vertebrates'. (Eds JR Merrick, M Archer, GM Hickey and MSY Lee) pp. 185-194. (Auscipub, Sydney)
Polhemus DA, Allen GR (2007a) Freshwater Biogeography of Papua. In 'The Ecology of Papua. Part 1'. (Eds AJ Marshall and BM Beehler) pp. 207-245. (Periplus Editions, Singapore)
Polhemus DA, Allen GR (2007b) Inland water ecosystems in Papua: classification, biota, and threats. In 'The Ecology of Papua. Part 2'. (Eds AJ Marshall and BM Beehler) pp. 858-900. (Periplus Editions, Singapore)
Randall JE, Allen GR, Smith-Vaniz WF (1978) 'Identification guide to the commercial fishes of the Persian Gulf.' FAO, Rome.
Roberts CM, McClean CJ, et al. (2002) Marine biodiversity hotspots and conservation priorities for tropical reefs. Science, 295.
Russell BC, Allen GR, Lubbock RH (1976) New cases of mimicry in marine fishes. . J. Zool., London 180, 407-423.
Spalding MD, Fox HE, et al. (2007) Marine ecoregions of the world: a bioregionalization of coastal and shelf areas. BioScience 57, 573-583.
Springer VG, Allen GR (2004) Ecsenius caeruliventris and E. shirleyae, two new species of blenniid fishes from Indonesia and new distribution records for other species of Ecsenius. Zootaxa 791, 1-12.
Wellington GM, Allen GR, Robertson DR (1994) Xyrichtys perlas (Labridae), a new species of razorfish from the tropical eastern Pacific Rev. fr. Aquariol. 21, 49-52.
Williams WD, Allen GR (1987) Origins and adaptations of the fauna of Australian inland waters. In 'Fauna of Australia. General Articles, Vol. 1A '. (Eds GR Dyne and DW Walton) pp. 184-201. (Australian Govt. Publishing Service: Canberra)
Wood CR, Wood EM, Allen GR (1994) '7. Fishes in Pulau Sipadan: Reef Life and Ecology. Wood, E. (ed.).' World Wide Fund for Nature Malaysia Project MYS 233/92:91-133.
Yusuf S, Allen GR (2002) Condition of coral reefs in the Togean and Banggai Islands, Sulawesi, Indonesia. In 'A marine rapid assessment of the Togean and Banggai Islands, Sulawesi, Indonesia. RAP Bulletin of Biological Assessment 20'. (Eds GR Allen and SA McKenna) pp. 27-37. (Conservation International, Washington, DC)