Jane Symonds

Jane Symonds

Senior Aquaculture Scientist – Applied aquaculture R&D, genetics and biotechnology

Role at Cawthron

Jane is a senior scientist and team leader in the Aquaculture group. Jane specialises in the application of genetics and selective breeding technologies to enhance commercial production and has over 24 years of experience in this field. As a science leader and project manager she is involved in a wide range of applied aquaculture research projects including skeletal health and optimising nutrition in king salmon and helping the paua industry maximise gains from commercial breeding.

Commercialisation of research for sustainable and profitable aquaculture development is a key driver for Dr Symonds. She believes industry focussed research programmes supported by excellent scientific rigour and applied R&D expertise are an important pathway to commercial success.

Technical skills, experience and interests

  • Leadership and management of large scale aquaculture R&D programmes
  • Business development and commercial client management
  • Design, development and management of commercial aquaculture selective breeding programmes
  • The application of genetics and biotechnology to enhance the gains from breeding programmes
  • Population genetics
  • Reproductive technologies
  • New aquaculture species development
  • Enhancement of king salmon performance for the benefit of NZ aquaculture
  • Interest in biosecurity and development of practical systems for successful implementation



  • PhD (Population and Molecular Genetics). Australian National University, Canberra, Australia, 1991
  • BSc (Hons, First Class, Genetics). University of Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom, 1985
Jane Symonds