A second major area of interest is the degree to which environmental events such as can be detected in chemical signatures of both otoliths and other biogenic carbonates (e.g. corals, bivalve shells). For instance, Ba/Ca ratios are most abundant in nutrient-rich waters and they can serve as powerful proxies for temporal fluctuations in upwelling or sediment plumes in reef or estuarine habitats. Analyses of these proxies in carbonate skeletal hard parts allow us to reconstruct time series of environmental variability for specific habitats. This information is essential in order to better understand the response of fish population dynamics to anthropogenic perturbations.
Current lab research involves species and habitats in the Gulf of Mexico, the North Atlantic, and the Great Barrier Reef. Specific topics of interest include 1) ontogenetic shifts in coastal distributions and population mixing of migratory fishes (e.g. American shad in the North Atlantic); 2) variation in habitat use patterns among discrete populations of diadromous species (e.g. southern flounder in Texas, barramundi in northern Australia); 3) influence of energetic status on population connectivity patterns (e.g. black bream in southern Australia); 4) flood and upwelling events recorded in Porites coral skeletons and damselfish otoliths (Great Barrier Reef).
Affiliated Research Units
Now that you've used EUREKA to identify a faculty member whose research interests match your own, read about getting involved in research at The University of Texas at Austin.
The Office of Undergraduate Research recommends that you attend an info session before contacting faculty members about research opportunities. We'll cover the steps to getting involved, tips for contacting faculty, funding possibilities, and options for course credit.
If you aren't able to attend an info session, contact the Office of Undergraduate Research to schedule an appointment with an advisor.