Dr Chris Barrett

Lead Shellfish Advisor

Dr Barrett's current interests are around cephalopod fisheries research to better understand squid and cuttlefish population dynamics, to try and ascertain the status of their stocks. He also provides external advice on the impacts of anthropogenic developments on shellfish around England and Wales.

My PhD focussed on intertidal fish communities and identifying the mechanisms for interspecific and intraspecific coexistence, through studies of their spatiotemporal population dynamics, diet, degrees of co-occurrence, habitat predictors, ecomorphology, diel activities and behaviour. I then joined Cefas as a Fisheries Scientist in the Applied Fisheries Science and Technology Group, where I developed a good understanding of how commercial fisheries operate and how fisheries have to adapt in response to the Common Fisheries Policy’s reform and its associated discard ban for quota species. I later joined the Shellfish Team as its Team Leader and had an active role in liaising with shellfishers and teaching them how to use novel technology such as Bluetooth callipers to self-sample, to help fill knowledge gaps in stock assessments. I also began building a specialism in cephalopod fisheries as it became apparent that commercially important, valuable squids and cuttlefish fisheries currently have no management in place.

I am Cefas’ representative to the IFCA TAG (Technical Advisory Group) and am in close contact with their staff to standardise our practises and help re-enforce one another’s evidence bases to ensure policy decisions are made based on strong, robust data. More recently, I have been involved in the ‘What Works in Conservation?’ project for marine fish; the first project of its kind to amalgamate evidence of conservation interventions for marine fish, to help inform managers and decision makers as to what does or doesn’t work in protecting various marine fish around the world. Further to being Cefas’ lead advisor to the MMO and NRW on the impacts of offshore developments on shellfish, I am now also building expertise in providing dredge and aggregate, and finfish advice.


Publications: ResearchGate

Selected Publications:

Laptikhovsky, V., Cooke, G., Barrett, C., Lozach, S., MacLeod, E., Oesterwind, D., Sheerin, E., Petroni, M., Barnwall, L., Robin, J-P., Allcock, L. & Power, A.M. (2021). Identification of benthic egg masses and spawning grounds in commercial squid in the English Channel and Celtic Sea: Loligo vulgaris vs L. forbesii, Fisheries Research (accepted).

Taylor, N., Clarke, L.J., Alliji, K., Barrett, C., McIntyre, R., Smith, R.K., and Sutherland, W.J. (2021) Marine Fish Conservation: Global Evidence for the Effects of Selected Interventions. Synopses of Conservation Evidence Series. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.

Barrett, C.J., Johnson, M.L., & Hull, S.L. (2020). Home-made fish traps reduce the capture of small shannies (Lipophrys pholis) compared to when using hand-nets, Conservation Evidence, 17: 32-34.

Barrett, C.J., Cook, A., Stone, D., Evans, C., Johnson, P., Thain, M., King, L., Wyn, G., Edwards, H., Quigley, D. & Stebbing P.D. A review of American lobster (Homarus americanus) records around the British Isles: 2012 to 2018, Hydrobiologia, doi: 10.1007/s10750-020-04326-7

Barrett, C.J., MacLeod, E., Oesterwind, D. & Laptikhovsky, V. (2020). Ommastrephid squid spawning in the North Sea: oceanography, climate change and species range expansion, Scientia Marina (accepted).

Lishchenko, F., Perales-Raya, C., Barrett, C., Oesterwind, D., Power, A.M., Larivain, A., Laptikhovsky, V., Karatza, A., Badouvas, N., Lishchenko, A. & Pierce, G.J. (2020).  A review of recent studies on the life history and ecology of European cephalopods with emphasis on species with the greatest commercial fishery and culture potential, Fisheries Research, 236: 106847.

Barrett, C.J., Johnson, M.L., Hull, S.L. (2016). Diet as a mechanism of coexistence between intertidal fish species of the U.K., Hydrobiologia, 768 (1): 125-135.

Barrett, C.J., Johnson, M.L, Hall, N., Hull, S.L. (2016). The first use of Fulton's K for assessing and comparing the conditions of inter-tidal fish populations, Marine Ecology, 37 (1): 42-45.

Barrett, C.J., Johnson, M.L., Hull, S.L. (2014). The mechanisms of intertidal fish coexistence: a model, Peer J, (pre-print).

Laptikhovsky, V., Barrett, C.J., Hollyman, P. (2017). From coral reefs to whale teeth: estimating mortality from natural accumulations of skeletal materials, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 598: 273-291.

Laptikhovsky, V., Barrett, C., Firmin, C., Hollyman, P., Lawler, A., Masefield, R., McIntyre,R., Palmer, D., Soeffker, M., Parker-Humphreys, M. (2016). A novel approach for estimation of the natural mortality of the common whelk, Buccinum undatum (L.) and role of hermit crabs in its shell turnover, Fisheries Research, 183: 146-154.

Barrett, C.J., Johnson, M.L., Hull, S.L. (2016). Population dynamics of two sympatric intertidal fish species (the shanny; Lipophrys pholis and long-spined scorpion fish; Taurulus bubalis) of Great Britain, Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK, DOI: 10.1017/S0025315416001582.

Laptikhovsky, V., Barrett, C.J., Firmin, C. & Ourens, R. (2019). Adaptations of the common cuttlefish, Sepia officinalis L. to cold-water reproduction in the English Channel, Journal of Shellfish Research, accepted.