Dr Peter Shaughnessy

Honorary Research Associate Mammals

+61 8 8207 7499


Research Interests                  

Distribution, abundance and population trends of fur seals and sea lions.
Interactions between seals and fisheries.
Interactions between seals and tourism.


Current Research Projects

Abundance and trends of pups of the Australian sea lion Neophoca cinerea at The Pages Islands, South Australia.  1989–90 to 2009–10.

Trends in abundance of New Zealand fur seal pups on Kangaroo Island, South Australia over 25 breeding seasons, 1988–89 to 2012–13.
Records of vagrant fur seals (family Otariidae) in South Australia.


Professional Associations           

  • Member, Australian Mammal Society 

  • Member, Australasian Wildlife Management Society

  • Member, Society for Marine Mammalogy



  • BSc, University of Adelaide (1963)

  • BSc (Hons), University of Adelaide (1965) 

  • MSc, University of Adelaide (1969) 

  • PhD, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, USA (1974) 


Community Engagement

Shaughnessy, P. and Goldsworthy, S. (2012). New Zealand fur seals in South Australia: how are they doing? Australian Mammal Society 50th Scientific Meeting, Port Augusta, September 2012. Oral presentation.

Shaughnessy, P.  A tour to the Antarctic Peninsula in 2009.  Talk to the Butterfly Conservation Society of South Australia.  2 October 2012.  

Shaughnessy, P.  Seals in Gulf St Vincent.  Talk to the Friends of Gulf St Vincent forum about ‘Health of our Gulf’.  28 October 2012.
Shaughnessy, P.   Seals in South Australia.  Talk at Adelaide Dolphin Day forum organised by South Australian Department of Environment, Water & Natural Resources.  20 January 2013. 

Media Expertise  

Distribution, abundance and population trends of fur seals and sea lions.
Impacts of seals on tourism.



  1. Shaughnessy, P. D., Kemper, C. M., and Ling, J. K. (2012). Records of vagrant phocid seals (family Phocidae) in South Australia. Australian Mammalogy 34: 155–169.
  2. McIntosh, R. R., Goldsworthy, S. D., Shaughnessy, P. D., Kennedy, C. W., and Burch, P. (2012). Estimating pup production in a mammal with an extended and aseasonal breeding season, the Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea). Wildlife Research 39: 137–148.
  3. Hamer, D. J., Ward, T. M., Shaughnessy, P. D., and Clark, S. R. (2011). Assessing the effectiveness of the Great Australian Bight Marine Park in protecting the endangered Australian sea lion Neophoca cinerea from by-catch mortality in shark gill-nets. Endangered Species Research 14: 203–216.
  4. Shaughnessy, P. D., Goldsworthy, S. D., Hamer, D. J., Page, B., and McIntosh, R. R. (2011). Australian sea lions Neophoca cinerea at colonies in South Australia: distribution and abundance: 2004 to 2008. Endangered Species Research 13: 87–98 and Supplement.
  5. Shaughnessy, P. (2010). Nicolas Baudin Island, western Eyre Peninsula: its 'discovery' and its seals.  South Australian Naturalist 84: 80–84.
  6. Shaughnessy, P. D., McKenzie, J., Lancaster, M. L., Goldsworthy, S. D., and Dennis, T. E. (2010).  Australian fur seals establish haulout sites and a breeding colony in South Australia. Australian Journal of Zoology 58: 94–103.
  7. Shaughnessy, P. D., Nicholls, A. O., and Briggs, S. V. (2008). Do tour boats affect fur seals at Montague Island, New South Wales?  Tourism in Marine Environments 5: 15–27.
  8. Shaughnessy, P. D., McIntosh, R. R., Goldsworthy, S. D., Dennis, T. E., and Berris, M. (2006). Trends in abundance of Australian sea lions, Neophoca cinerea, at Seal Bay, Kangaroo Island, South Australia inTrites, A. W., Atkinson, S. K., DeMaster, D. P., Fritz, L. W., Gelatt, T. S., Rea, L. D., and Wynne K. M. (eds) Sea Lions of the World, pp. 325–351. Fairbanks, Alaska, USA: Alaska Sea Grant College Program, University of Alaska.
  9. Shaughnessy, P. D. (2006). Instances of predation on fur seals by white sharks in South Australia. Australian Mammalogy 28: 107–110.
  10. Shaughnessy, P. D., Jones, R. T., and Ensor, P. (2006). Pelage coloration of breeding crabeater seals Lobodon carcinophaga (Carnivora: Phocidae). Australian Mammalogy 28: 93–95.