Dr. Gavin Hanke

Curator of Vertebrate Zoology

Gavin Hanke joined the Royal BC Museum in 2004 after working at the Manitoba Museum and teaching in universities. Much of Gavin’s published work is based on his PhD which focused on fossil fishes (acanthodians and early shark-like fishes) of northwestern Canada from the Lower Devonian. He has described and named 10 new fossil fish species, and has another six new species descriptions still to publish.

Gavin has many publications, including two chapters in the Naturalist’s Guide to the Victoria Region, and 28 species entries in Animal: The Definitive Visual Guide to the World’s Wildlife (2001), both aimed at a general audience.

Gavin also works with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans to document marine fish distributions, and is working on a series of papers detailing many new species records and species range extensions along our coast. Gavin also works with the BC Ministry of Environment to collect and monitor exotic vertebrates, with a special interest in the role of the pet trade, angling industry and importation of live food fishes as a source of exotic/invasive animals.


PhD, University of Alberta, 2001

MSc, University of Manitoba, 1996

BSc, MSc, University of Manitoba, 1991

Areas of Interest

Specialty: Biogeography and biology of fishes; palaeoichthyology

Areas of Expertise: Fishes, extant and extinct

Exotic/invasive animals and the role of the pet trade in species introductions

Amphibian and reptile biology and biogeography

Contact Dr. Gavin Hanke

Email: ghanke@royalbcmuseum.bc.ca

Latest Articles

Anoles Appear

May 6, 2021 12:16 pm

Our garden centres carry tropical plants as well as temperate plants for your garden. Even hardware stores like Canadian Tire, Rona, Lowes and […]

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Free Fly Frog Food

February 12, 2021 3:56 pm

When I was a kid, I had a range of pets—mostly reptiles and amphibians; no surprise there. To feed my frogs, toads and […]

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Delta Surprise

November 17, 2020 11:16 am

I don’t expect to get new lizard range records in mid-November, especially since the weather has been so grey and cool. This month […]

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October 23, 2020 2:17 pm

Common wall lizards, Podarcis muralis, were first detected in Chilliwack in late June 2020 by Frances and Georgina Wetmore. The report came to […]

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September 29, 2020 9:25 am

“Don’t let it loose.” That is the message to all pet shops in the province. Shoppers should see the logo that the Inter-Ministry […]

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