My research interests focus on nearshore marine ecology, in particular how sea life assemblages are distributed and how they change through time in relation to physical dynamics (e.g., climate change) and biological perturbations (e.g., human impacts). Much of my work is conducted at the eight Channel Islands, with comparative studies throughout southern California and along the Pacific Coast. I have been active in marine life time-series surveys for over 30 years, heading the Channel Islands Research Program (CIRP) with support from the Tatman Foundation, and coordinating the Multi-Agency Rocky Intertidal Network (MARINe) with support from the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. CIRP includes distributional abundance surveys of subtidal plants, invertebrates, and fishes inside/outside Marine Protected Areas; monitoring of kelp, stable sand, eelgrass, and urchin dominated communities; and evaluation of marine disease outbreaks (e.g., abalone, echinoderms) and invasive species spread (e.g., Sargassum, Undaria). MARINe includes governmental, academic, and other organizations that cooperate to conduct long-term marine life monitoring at over 200 West Coast rocky intertidal sites to evaluate environmental health and establish dynamic baselines with relation to climate change, disease, human impacts, and Marine Protected Areas. As MARINe Coordinator, I facilitate communications, websites, and data exchange; oversee sites and protocols; and coordinate management of databases. I am a member of the MARINe Science and Data Panels, advise educational film productions, served on the MLPA South Coast Regional Stakeholder’s Group, and was 2002/2003 Naturalist of the Year for Western Society of Naturalists.
Associate Research Biologist, Marine Science Institute