Accessibility Tools

  • Content scaling 100%
  • Font size 100%
  • Line height 100%
  • Letter spacing 100%

Paul Humphries

Paul Humphries lectures in ecology and animal diversity and studies the ecology of rivers at Charles Sturt University. He has published many scientific papers, book chapters, history of science, and opinion pieces. He is co-editor of Ecology of Australian Freshwater Fishes (CSIRO Publishing, 2013) and a children’s picture book, Arnold Jeffrey/Jeffrey Arnold (Windy Hollows Books, 2017).

Paul Humphries reviews 'The Silent Deep' by Tony Koslow

October 2007, no. 295 01 October 2007
To earn some money as a student in the late 1980s, I did a short stint at CSIRO Marine Laboratories in Perth, identifying deep-sea fish. I spent a couple of weeks up to my armpits in pale, preserved and squashed fish, which were extremely hard to identify, partly because of their misshapen form and lack of colour, but also because many of the species were entirely new to science. Some looked like ... (read more)

Paul Humphries reviews 'The Best Australian Science Writing 2018' edited by John Pickrell

December 2018, no. 407 27 November 2018
I first encountered Stephen Jay Gould when I happened on one of his books in a bookshop during my late teens. Its unusual title, The Panda’s Thumb, caught my eye. The lead article channelled Charles Darwin’s approach to understanding the natural world, not through looking at perfect adaptations to the environment but through recognising that nature works with what it has, often inelegantly and ... (read more)

Paul Humphries reviews 'Wild Sea: A history of the Southern Ocean' by Joy McCann

October 2018, no. 405 25 September 2018
Icebergs loom large in Joy McCann’s Wild Sea: A history of the Southern Ocean. They are one of the most recognisable features of the higher latitudes of the Southern Ocean and the one that people often look forward to the most when voyaging south for the first time. Ice gets its own chapter in an inspiring book that spans the geologic and human history of this great swath of howling, tide-swept ... (read more)

Paul Humphries reviews 'Flood Country' by Emily O’Gorman

April 2013, no. 350 26 March 2013
A friend and colleague from Europe visited in October 2010 for the first time in almost a decade. I had peppered him in the intervening years with emails bemoaning the long drought, the record heat, the lack of rain, the bushfires, the water restrictions, the young and old trees dying, the rivers ceasing to flow and finally drying altogether. I had described the harshness of the brown landscape de ... (read more)