Fisheries Oceanography &
Ecology Laboratory

Current Projects

Available Positions

Frank Hernandez

Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory

The Fisheries Oceanography and Ecology Lab is composed of a diverse group of scientists, and includes high school and undergraduate summer interns, graduate students, research technicians, and postdoctoral research scientists. Our team is committed to its research efforts, as well as outreach opportunities to share our findings with the general public. For information on graduate, undergraduate and intern research opportunities, please contact Dr. Hernandez. From time to time we have technician openings in our laboratory. These positions will be posted on the University of Southern Mississippi's Employment and Human Resources website as they become available.

#, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
John Ransom and Dr. Jesse Filbrun tie off the MININESS before returning to port after a long day of sampling.

 

Members of the Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory
Members of the Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory, 2015

 

 

Postdoctoral Research Scientists

Kelia Axler, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Alison Deary

Alison Deary

Alison.Deary@usm.edu

Education:

  • PhD, Marine Science with a concentration in Fisheries, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary, 2015
    BS, Marine Biology with double minor in Chemistry and Geology, 2009

Research Interests:
I am interested in morphology and how morphological structures can influence the ecology of early life history stage fishes, particularly focusing on feeding habitats.

Current Projects:
Examining the impact of oil, dispersant, and oil-dispersant complexes seasonally on the planktonic community in river dominated, coastal habitats. I am currently working with the Consortium for Oil Spill Exposure Pathways in Coastal River-Dominated Ecosystems (CONCORDE) as part of the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GOMRI).

Recent Publications:

  • Ribeiro, F., E. Hale, T. Clardy, A. L. Deary, E. J Hilton, T. Targett and J. E. Olney. 2015. Assemblage structure and temporal patterns of larval fish ingress into Chesapeake and Delaware Bays. Marine Ecology Progress Series 527: 167-180.
  • Deary, A.L., S. Moret, M. Engles, E. Zettler, G. Jaroslow and G. Sancho. 2015. Influence of Central Pacific oceanographic conditions in the vertical habitat of four tropical tuna species. Pacific Science. Pacific Science 69 (4).
  • Deary AL, P Pattrick and N Strydom. Accepted. Development and  ossification of the feeding apparatus in the larvae of two co-occurring species of kob (Sciaenidae), Argyrosomus japonicus and A. thorpei. Journal of Fish Biology.

Research Technicians

Kelia Axler, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Kelia Axler

Kelia Axler

Kelia.Axler@usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Ecology, University of Minnesota, 2013

Research Interest

Impacts of local and global stressors on marine and freshwater communities in order to inform and develop sustainable management of our aquatic ecosystems

Carla Culpepper, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Carla Culpepper

Carla Culpepper

Carla.Culpepper@usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Biology and Marine Science, University of Alabama, 2008

Research Interests

My primary research interests are in plankton dynamics in the northern Gulf of Mexico, particularly, the interactions between zooplankton and ichthyoplankton.

 

Anne Evans, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Anne Evans

Anne Evans

Anne.Evans@usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Marine Science, Southampton College, 2002
  • M.S., Environmental Science, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, 2006

Research Interests

My primary interests are in marine chemistry and ecotoxicology, specifically how natural and man-made toxins interact with the environment.  I am also interested in the importance of conservation and protection of our bays and estuaries through coastal decision making and public education.

Anne Evans, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Kristin Heidenreich

Kristin Heidenreich

Kristin.Heidenreich@usm.edu

Education:

  • B.S., Marine Biology, University of North Carolina-Wilmington, 2014

Research Interests: Phytoplankton ecology; Anthropogenic effects, including climate change and ocean acidification, on phytoplankton communities.

Olivia Lestrade, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Olivia Lestrade

Olivia Lestrade

Olivia.Lestrade@usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Marine Biology, The University of Southern Mississippi, 2013
  • A.A., General Studies, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, 2011

Research Interest

I am interested in environmental ecology of marine ecosystems, anthropogenic effects, general ichthyology, and conservation education.

Sarah Muffelman, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Sarah Muffelman

Sarah Muffelman

Sarah.Muffelman@usm.edu

Education

  • M.S., Marine Science, College of William and Mary, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, 2006
  • B.S., Biology, Davidson College, 2000

Research Interests

Early life history or marine fishes and decapods; larval fish and decapod taxonomy


Lanora Vasquez del Mercado, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Lanora Vasquez del Mercado

Lanora Vasquez del Mercado

Lanora.VasquezdelMercado@usm.edu

Education

  • M.S., Marine Sciences, University of South Alabama, 2012
  • B.S., Marine Biology, University of Southern Mississippi, 2003
  • A.S., Lakeland Community College (Ohio), 2000
  • A.A., Lakeland Community College (Ohio), 2000

Research Interests

Biological, chemical, and physical processes affecting larval and adult fish distributions; horizontal and vertical distribution and migration of larval and adult fish; life history and dietary analysis of larval and adult fish

Graduate Students

 
Lillian Collins, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Lillian Collins

Lillian Collins

Lillian.Collins@usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Biological Sciences, 2009

Graduate Thesis

Ecology of larval ophichthid eels in the northern Gulf of Mexico

Jana.Herrman, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Jana.Herrman

Jana Herrmann

Jana.Herrmann@usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Marine Biology/Environmental Biology, University of South Alabama, 2002

Graduate Thesis

Ecology of chaetognaths in the northern Gulf of Mexico, with an emphasis on predatory interactions with larval fishes

Angie Hoover

Angie Hoover

Angie.Hoover@usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Biology, Southwestern Oklahoma State University, 2014

Graduate Thesis: TBA

 

Glenn Zapfe, GCRL Fisheries Oceanography & Ecology Laboratory
Glenn Zapfe

Glenn Zapfe

Glenn.Zapfe@eagles.usm.edu

Education

  • B.S., Biology, Southeast Missouri State University,   May 1998 
  • M.S., Coastal Sciences, University of Southern Mississippi, August 2002

Graduate Dissertation

My dissertation project will utilize ichthyoplankton data collected from the Southeast Area Monitoring and Assessment Program (SEAMAP). I plan on examining population dynamics of ichthyoplankton that include predator-prey interactions, oceanographic influences, and vertical depth distribution during the winter months in the northern Gulf of Mexico. The overall goal is to provide pertinent information on the early life history stages of fishes that can be utilized for ecosystem based management of the Gulf of Mexico.

Lab Alumni