Jacob’s primary research interests are focused on addressing aquatic ecological questions that can be applied to fisheries and resource management. He is specifically interested in fish trophic interactions, growth and recruitment, movement patterns, mortality, and their use as biological health indicators. He uses multiple approaches in his research, ranging from simulations and hierarchical modeling to hands on field work in the form of telemetry and fish tagging. Jacob’s research involves collaboration with state and federal agencies, fellow academic researchers, along with commercial and recreational fisherman.
Learn more about his work at his site.
Sam is a PhD candidate in Dr. Jeff Buckel’s lab in the department of Applied Ecology. For her doctoral research, she is conducting a multi-species food habits study in Pamlico Sound, NC. Her research interests include predator-prey relationships, ecosystem modeling, and developing new methods for analyzing food habits data. Learn more about Samantha at her site.
Sam can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blueback herring (Alosa aestavalis) and alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), collectively known as river herring, once comprised one of the largest stocks in North America ranging almost the entire Atlantic coast of North America. However, in the late 1970’s the stock collapsed prompting stringent regulations that culminated in regional moratoriums. Despite moratoriums, river herring populations have not shown promising signs of rebound and have since been listed as a Species of Concern by NOAA Fisheries in 2006. Focus has shifted from commercial fishing to the availability of suitable spawning habitat and conditions as the catalyst for declining river herring stocks.
The goal of Steven’s project is to elucidate the mechanisms responsible for temporal fluctuations in utilized spawning habitat, effectively evaluating the impact of land and species management practices on river herring spawning success. He is also interested in studying the phenology of the river herring spawning migration. Visit Steve’s page here.
Riley’s research interests focus on sport fisheries ecology and conservation. He is specifically interested in understanding population genetics and life history adaptability of cobia in coastal North Carolina and Virginia waters. Riley joined the Buckel lab in 2017 as a M.S. candidate to investigate the population structure of cobia using acoustic telemetry and genetic analysis. Riley and Jacob Kause are working collaboratively with state and federal agencies on the cobia project as part of a larger coast-wide program. The population structure of cobia on the US east coast is not clearly defined. The goal of this program is to determine where boundaries should be drawn for stock assessments and management of US east coast cobia.
Thesis Topic: Estimate the population structure of Cobia using acoustic telemetry and genetic data in coastal North Carolina and Virginia. Visit Riley’s page here.
Riley can be contacted at: email@example.com
Thom Teears, NC Sea Grant Fellow and PhD Candidate
Thom’s interest focuses on learning more about fisheries and aquatic ecological relationships in order to inform fisheries resource stewardship and conservation. He is currently working on a southeast coast-wide stock assessment of Sheepshead as a North Carolina Sea Grant Fellow in collaboration with the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries as well as other scientists from southeastern Atlantic states. He utilizes quantitative methods to understand fish stock dynamics by exploring various data-limited stock assessment approaches using established and developing technologies. He also is interested in learning more about the biological and ecological interactions used in estimating fish stock dynamics parameters.
Thom can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Paul Rudershausen, Research Scholar
Paul is the lead on several projects in the lab. Currently, he is comparing circle and j hook performance in the dolphinfish, yellowfin tuna, and wahoo fishery; estimating discard mortality in reef fishes using tag returns; and using hydroacoustics and traditional fish sampling gear to test alternative strategies to index adult snapper-grouper species.
Paul can be contacted at 252.222.6342 or email@example.com
Jeffery Merrell, Research Technician
Jeffery is a local to Carteret County and has worked on or around the water the majority of his life. He received his BS in Biology from East Carolina University in 2004. After graduation, Jeffery spent six months as a temporary Fisheries Field and Laboratory Technician at CMAST before being hired on with the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries as a Marine Fisheries Technician doing a stock assessment in Pamlico Sound. Currently, Jeffery assists our graduate students with their research as needed, whether its gathering data in the field, working up samples within the lab, or helping with data entry and analysis.
Jeffery can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org