Clerkin specializes in deep-sea chondrichthyans and focuses on finding new and rare species and learning about their life histories. His unorthodox approach has allowed him to discover over a dozen new species of sharks and locate some the world’s most mysterious species including: Megamouths, Goblin Sharks, False Catsharks, and Frilled Sharks.
His cutting-edge adventure science approach to researching sharks has lead him around the world pursuing rare sharks and has resulted in several Shark Week shows, as well as a pilot for his own adventure series on Travel Channel.
His research has granted him a variety of opportunities including leading workshops for the United Nations, serving as a shark expert for Food and Agriculture Organization’s research cruises, and publishing on a variety of topics concerned new and rare species. He has conducted research for projects aboard ships across the Pacific Ocean, the Bering Sea, Sea of Cortez, Philippine Sea, central equatorial Pacific, South East Atlantic, and all throughout the Southwestern Indian Ocean.
He is currently describing the new species he has discovered, preparing a workshop for the Republic of Mauritius regarding their National Plan of Action for sharks, producing a marine science documentary, and planning his next expeditions.