The Department of Biological Sciences at UCT was established in 2013 as a result of a merger between the long standing Botany and Zoology Departments. The department has a large academic staff compliment, a large group of research associates, and a vibrant group of postdoctoral fellows and postgraduate students. The Department houses the Bolus Herbarium, the FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology (a DST-NRF Centre of Excellence), and three formal URC research units - the Plant Conservation Unit (PCU), the Animal Demography Unit (ADU) and the Institute for Communities and Wildlife in Africa (iCWild), as well as hosting the Marine Research Institute (Ma-Re). Research strengths range from marine biology, conservation biology, biodiversity, ecology, evolutionary biology, ornithology, palaeobiology, physiology and systematics. The Department hosts the DST-NRF South African Research Chair in Marine Ecology & Fisheries. (SARCHI ME&F).