The South African Environmental Observation Network (SAEON), in collaboration with the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), will be launching a unique, first of its kind book in South Africa. The book titled Field Guide to the Offshore Marine Invertebrates of South Africa will be launched at the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town this coming Thursday, 10 May 2018.

 The book is an identification guide to the marine creatures (invertebrates) of the offshore deep-sea floor.  It is also a result of a long-term invertebrate monitoring program which saw a dedicated team of researchers who, working together in advancing South Africa’s marine biodiversity knowledge, collected, recorded and managed large amounts of specimens and data from 2007 to 2017.

The book is linked to the SeaKeys project which was funded by the Foundational Biodiversity Information Programme (FBIP), according to Dr Kerry Sink, co-author on the book.

The field guide is seen as a significant milestone in the description and mapping of South Africa’s deep-water invertebrate biodiversity. The information presented in the book advances taxonomy and biogeographic research by contributing to the description, mapping, assessment (and thus the improved management) of marine ecosystems in South Africa.

In addition to the book compilation, the monitoring programme has also enabled a rapid increase in local knowledge and understanding of offshore invertebrate taxonomy in South Africa and laid a foundation for the classification, description and mapping of offshore benthic ecosystems.

All media are invited.

 Date: Thursday, 10 May 2018

Time: 18h00 – 20h00

Venue: Two Oceans Aquarium, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town

Light snacks and drinks will be served.

For more information and for interviews please contact Dr Lara Atkinson on or (+27) 82 712 7790


 Image: Book Cover – Field Guide to the Offshore Marine Invertebrates of South Africa

 SAEON is a national facility of the National Research Foundation.

 For further information and other media queries please contact:

Palesa Mokoena

National Research Foundation

Tel: 012 481 4058