Stephen Midgley AM



Hamar Midgley was born in Wynnum in 1918 and became a product of that great autodidactic tradition that causes universities perpetually to question the exclusive and excessive claims that they might be tempted to make about their own significance. Aself­taught scholar and researcher, he has devoted his life to the study of freshwater fish and other aquatic life and achieved great eminence within Australia in fish biology and ecology. 

After thirteen years of private investigatory work he spent twenty-nine years in professional employment as fisheries consultant and adviser to many government depart­ments and authorities, private companies and universities. This work generated many reports and academic articles, which constitute an extensive and enviable publication list that would have brought distinction to a purely academic career. His special areas of competence have covered many practical problems such as the collecting, handling, transporting and breeding of tropical native fish species, the design and servicing of breeding ponds, and the environmental management of streams, watersheds and impound­ments. He has conducted extensive surveys of fish in the rivers of the Northern Territory and Queensland and has amassed a vast amount of data on the fishes of tropical Australia. 

His professional standing has been recognised by the Vice-Presidency of the Australian Society for Limnology, the Presidency and Life Membership of the Australian Society for Fish Biology, and membership of the American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists which accorded him Emeritus status in 1992. In 1984 he was appointed member of the General Division of the Order of Australia for his studies of native freshwater fishes. 

Mr Chancellor, in recognition of his outstanding contributions in the fields of fish biology and ecology, I present to you Stephen Hamar Midgley, Member of the Order of Australia, for the conferral of the award of Doctor of Science honoris causa to which he has been admitted by the Senate of the University. 


Doctor of Science honoris causa