School of Natural and Environmental Sciences

Staff Profile

Dr Matthew Cobain

Research Associate


I am an ecologist as part of the Coldfish project on the NERC funded Changing Arctic Ocean (CAO) program. My current research utilises stable isotopes, naturally occurring biogeochemical tracers, to explore changes in the Barents Sea fish community, a region currently undergoing rapid warming compared to the global average. In particular, I am exploring spatial changes in the degree of bentho-pelagic coupling, food web structure and the ecological niches of key fish species.

My background is in quantifying complex ecosystem structure and functioning with an emphasis on fish communities and food-web dynamics. I have worked in partnership with various collaborations, notably with the University of Leeds and EAWAG, the Swiss federal aquatic research institute.

Follow me on Twitter for updates on my research! @CobainMat

PhD: Fish and their Scales: On the power laws of aggregation, size distribution and trophic interaction

2014-18: University of Southampton under Dr Clive Trueman

Msci in Marine Biology, first class with honours

2010-14: University of Southampton (3rd year at UNCW, USA)


While I have no formal teaching commitments with my current position, I help with the supervision of various undergraduate projects that incorporate stable isotope and fish ecology.

I have previously taught across various marine biology modules at the University of Southampton up to Msc level, including lectures, lab practicals, statistical workshops in R and field-based course.