Research Consortium for Antarctica

© John Weller Photography


Antarctica, and the Southern Ocean that encircles it, is the most pristine and least understood ecosystem on Earth, providing a source of wonder, inspiration, and hope to all of humanity. Silverfish is being designed as an independent, transformative, well-resourced consortium driving coordinated research in high-seas marine protected areas (MPAs) in the Southern Ocean needed to safeguard Antarctica’s iconic wildlife and globally significant ecosystems.

We foster an inclusive and coordinated research community to resolve key research questions crucial to understanding ecosystem changes and to inform conservation decision-making. Our initial focus is on enhanced management of the world’s largest MPA: the Ross Sea region MPA (2.06 million km2), designated in 2016 by the Commission for Conservation of Antarctic Living Marine Resources (CCAMLR). Silverfish will support coordination of exciting research and monitoring by CCAMLR members in the MPA, bridge science and policy gaps, and augment existing funding and resources to ensure the long-term sustainability of  the MPA.


Silverfish is working to:


Increase support for research and fill outstanding knowledge gaps in the Ross Sea region MPA by providing independent international funding of any one government and supporting objective research by a diverse community of scientists.


Build trust and inclusivity between CCAMLR Members and the broader Southern Ocean scientific community by supporting more efficient and effective pathways for translating research into scientific advice for CCAMLR.


Enhance coordination and transparency between governments, scientists, tourism, and fishing interests.

© John Weller Photography

Preserving the Ross Sea: A Global Treasure at Risk

Discover the challenges faced and the solutions proposed to safeguard this unique marine ecosystem

© John Weller Photography


Insufficiency of research and coordination in the Ross Sea region Marine Protected Area (MPA), leading to gaps in understanding and cooperation, and hindering the assessment of the MPA's effectiveness in preserving habitats, species, and mitigating climate change and krill fishing impacts.

© John Weller Photography


Securing additional independent research funding, fostering better collaboration among scientists, tourism, and fishing stakeholders, and improving the streamlined translation of research findings into actionable science advice for CCAMLR, addressing the issues identified in the Ross Sea region Marine Protected Area.

Through scientific excellence, innovative technology and global partnerships, Silverfish is tailored to address the challenges facing MPA monitoring and management in Antarctic seas. In time, the Silverfish model is designed to scale to a circumpolar programme, applying the tools developed to support the expected growing network of CCAMLR MPAs, and to serve as a model to inform future high seas MPAs.


Silverfish aims to create governance models, facilitate research, and promote monitoring beyond national boundaries to support the Global High Seas Treaty and the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework's goal of protecting 30% of marine areas by 2030.

Silverfish's Contribution to Global Conservation Goals


Silverfish supports vital climate research such as Antarctic krill studies, which could provide carbon storage services valued at $15 billion annually (WWF, 2023).


Silverfish contributes to the sustained provision of global ecosystem services, including climate regulation, high-value seafood, unique research opportunities, and cultural services.