Marine biodiversity and systematics, marine alien species, coastal ecology 
Phone: 021 650 3610 





Recent books

Branch, G.M., C.L. Griffiths, M.L. Branch & L Beckley 2016. Two Oceans: A Guide to the Marine Life of Southern Africa.  (Completely revised and greatly expanded edition with new publisher) Randomhouse/Struik, Cape Town, 464pp. (4th edition).

Griffiths, C.L, Day J.A. & Picker, M.D. 2015. Freshwater Life. A Field Guide to the Plants and Animals of southern Africa. Randomhouse/Struik, Cape Town, 368pp

Picker, M.D., C.L. Griffiths 2011. Alien and Invasive Animals – A South African Perspective. Randomhouse/Struik Cape Town  240pp

Picker, M.D., C.L. Griffiths & A. Weaving   2002. Field Guide to Insects of South Africa. Struik Publishers, Cape Town 440 pp. (currently in 9th printing 2011)

Recent publications:

216 Mugabe, ED, Amoda, CA, Griffiths, CL. 2019 Populations structure and growth of the beaked clam Eumarkia pauercula (Holten, 1802) in Maputo Bay, Mozambique. Afr. J. Mar. Sci. 41(4): 385-393.

215 Filander Z, Samyn Y, Griffiths CL 2019. Further additions to the South African echinoid (Echinodermata, Echinoidea) fauna. ZooKeys 831: 71-80.

214 Olbers J M, Griffiths CL, O’Hara TD, Samyn Y 2019. Field Guide to the brittle and basket stars (Echinodermata: Ophiuriodea) of South Africa. ABC Taxa 19: 1-346.

213 Griffiths CL 2019. A new species of Sunamphitoe (Amphipoda: Ampithoidae) found boring into the primary fronds of South African kelps. J. Crustacean Biol. doi:10.1093/jcbiol/ruz016

212 Wright AG, Griffiths CL & Botha T 2019. Population structure and morphology of South African deep-water parapagurid hermit crabs. Acta Zoologica 2019:1-15.

211 Mugabe, ED, Amoda, CA, Griffiths, CL 2019. Recruitment patterns and standing stocks of the beaked clam Eumarkia pauercula (Holten, 1802) in Maputo Bay, Mozambique. Afr. J. Fisheries Sci. 7:1-9.

210 Kajee, M, Griffiths CL & Lamberth S 2018. Long-term physico-chemical and faunal changes in a small, rural South African estuary. Afr. Zool. 53 (4): 127-137.

209 Arendse D, Pitcher GC, Griffiths CL 2018. Reproductive condition and spawning induction of the South African scallop Pecten sulcicostatus. J. Shellfish Res. 37(5):1-7 .

208 Griffiths CL 2018. First record of the maritime earwig Anisolabis maritima (Dermaptera: Anisolabididae) from South Africa. Bioinvasion Records 7(4): 459-462.

207 LandschoffJ, KomaiT, du PlessisA, GouwsG, GriffithsCL 2018. MicroCT imaging applied to description of a new species of Pagurus Fabricius, 1775 (Crustacea: Decapoda: Anomura: Paguridae), with selection of three-dimensional type data. PLoS One 13(9): 1-26. e 0203107.

206 Griffiths C, Landschoff J 2018. A unique ‘spring-loaded’ gnathopod in the recently re-discovered and highly range-restricted estuarine amphipod Quadrivisio aviceps. Afr. J. Mar. Sci. 40:2, 219-224, DOI: 10.2989/1814232X.2018.1479308

205 Mugabe, ED, Amoda, CA, Griffiths, CL. 2017 (published 2018). Reproductive biology of the beaked clam Eumarcia paupercula (Bivalvia: Veneridae) from Maputo Bay, Mozambique. Western Indian Ocean. Journal of Marine Science 16: 69-77.

204 Spana C, Haussermann V, Acuna F H, Griffiths CL, Sebb LW, Gomez-Uchida D. 2018. Hierarchical biogeographical processes largely explain the genomic divergence patterns in a species complex of sea anemones. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 127: 217-228.

203 Griffiths CL, Roberts S, Branch GM, Eckel K, Schubert C, Lemaitre R. 2018. Porcelain Crab Porcellana platycheles africana (Decapoda: Porcellanidae) introduced into Saldanha Bay, South Africa. Bioinvasion Records 7:133-142

202 Kock AA, Photopoulou T, Durbach I, Mauff K, Meÿer M, Kotze D, Griffiths C., M. O’Riain J 2018. Summer at the beach: Spatio-temporal patterns of white shark occurrence along the inshore areas of False Bay, South Africa. Movement Ecol. 6:7: 1-13

201 Greenham TM, Santamaria CA, Griffiths CL 2018. Molecular approaches uncover cryptic diversity of the intertidal Ligia isopods (Crustacea, Isopoda, Ligiidae) across the southern African coastline. PeerJ, e4658: 1-19; DOI 10.7717/peerj.4658

200 LandschoffJ, Du PlessisA, Griffiths CL 2018. A micro X-ray computed tomography dataset of South African hermit crabs (Crustacea: Decapoda: Anomura: Paguroidea), containing scans of two rare specimens and of three recently described species. Gigascience, 7:1-7

199 Wittmann KJ Griffiths CL 2018. A new species of Mysidopsis Sars,1864 from the Atlantic coast of South Africa, with ­­supplementary descriptions of two additional species and notes on colour and diet (Mysida: Mysidae: Leptomysinae: Mysidopsini). J. Crust. Biol. 2018: 1-20. doi:10.1093/jcbiol/rux118

Abbreviated CV (updated January 2020 )

Charles Griffiths was born in Kenya and educated at Blundell’s Public School in Devon, UK, then at Southampton University (UK), where he was awarded a BSc(Hons) in 1970. He obtained his PhD from the University of Cape Town in 1974. He joined the University of Cape Town staff at the age of 22, rising through the ranks from Research Assistant to Full Professor and was Director of the UCT Marine Biology Research Centre for 17 years up to his retirement in 2013. He is currently an Emeritus Professor and Senior Scholar in the Department of Biological Sciences. He married Dr Roberta Griffiths in 1974 and they have two adult children, Melinda (b 1980) and Matthew (b 1986).

His main current research interests are the documentation of marine biodiversity and the impacts of marine alien species. He is an author of papers describing well over 100 species new to science and recording more than 200 additional species in South Africa for the first time. Six new species have also been named (by other researchers) in his honour. He is author of eight guide books to the South African fauna, including three best-selling field guides: ‘Two Oceans – a Guide to the Marine Life of South Africa’ (now in its 4th edition), ‘Field Guide to the Insects of South Africa’ (now in its 3rd edition) and the recent ‘Freshwater Life’. He has published 17 book chapters, 215 research articles and over 80 semi-popular scientific articles. He is also author of over 200 conference presentations and has convened four conferences.  His ‘H- Index’ is 51 and his work has been cited over 8500 times.

A total of 53 masters and 26 PhD students have graduated under his supervision, with a further 6 MSc and 3 PhD students currently under supervision. He is a recipient of the UCT book award, is a Life Fellow of the University of Cape Town, a Team Member of the DST/NRF Centre of Excellence in Invasion Biology and winner of the Gold Medal of the Zoological Society of South Africa. He is a former editor of the journal African Zoology and a current or former member of the editorial boards of the journals Marine Biology, Koedoe, Smithiana, Animals, and African Natural History and has acted as a reviewer for over 75 different journals. In his recreation time he is a serious natural history photographer and well over 2000 of his images have been published in textbooks, magazines, advertisements and calendars around the world, including over 20 featured as magazine or book covers.