Prof Louise Allcock

Louise AllcockI fell in love with the deep-sea through my work on octopuses and my research now has two separate strands: cephalopod ecology and evolution and biodiversity and ecosystem functioning of submarine canyons. 


Cephalopod Evolution

During my PhD on Antarctic octopuses I uncovered an endemic radiation of species and later, with my collaborator Jan Strugnell, showed how deep-sea octopuses found throughout the world’s oceans had their evolutionary origins in Antarctica.  This led to a long-term fascination with cephalopod evolution, a subject which is far from resolved, and on which my group is still working.  

Octopus, Squid, Cuttlefish In an attempt to share my love of cephalopods, I co-authored a richly illustrated book on them in 2018.  The UK imprint (left image) is sold out, but US version (right image) is still out there (as well as German and French translations!).

Deep-sea Science

Since 2010 I’ve been leading a cruise programme to submarine canyons on the Irish continental margin. We have been deploying the National deep-water ROV Holland I from RV Celtic Explorer to study the vulnerable marine ecosystems of the canyon walls, and document their remarkable biodiversity.  I am currently funded by Science Foundation Ireland to seek new marine natural products from Ireland's deep sea.  A collaboration with USF's Bill Baker, this project is truly interdisciplinary, with a huge chemistry component, but it also has conservation objectives, and involves extensive species distribution modelling of deep-sea corals and sponges.

Group members

Our group is currently a mix of career stages with a wide variety of expertise from chemistry to systematics to modelling!

You can also:

Email me:
See my full profile on IRIS
See my Google Scholar profile
See my ISI listed publications under researcher ID
Follow me on Twitter: @DrShmoo

Former group members

Gone but not forgotten!

Exploiting and Conserving Deep-sea Genetic Resources

Science Foundation IrelandThe search for marine natural products from Ireland's deep-sea corals and sponges.  An interdisciplinary project looking for new organic compounds with potential pharmaceutical uses.  Read more...

Cephs and Chefs

 CephsChefsLogoGiven the ban on discards from fisheries, can we get Ireland to value cephalopods as a delicacy by learning from our European counterparts? Read more...Interreg Atlantic Area


ASSEMBLE +ASSEMBLE Plus provides scientists with Transnational Access to marine biological stations and a wide variety of state-of-the-art experimental and analytical facilities, and advanced training opportunities. Read more...