alumni

Emma Cross (Post-doctoral researcher 2017-2019)

Emma-Cross

Emma Cross joined our team in September 2017, after receiving her PhD from Cambridge University, UK, in August 2016. Her previous work focused on the CO2-sensitivity of polar and temperate brachiopods, a group of ancient, sessile calcifiers that build large shells but are unrelated to mollusks. In our lab, Emma transitioned to working with fish, particularly Atlantic silversides, testing how fluctuating pH and oxygen environments typical of nearshore environments affect early life survival and growth. Emma was also instrumental in all of our follow-up, ongoing work on sand lance sensitivity to ocean warming and acidification.

Emma was an incredible enrichment to our lab, and has now (September 2019) started her new faculty position as Assistant Professor in Coastal/Marine Science at Southern Connecticut State University (New Haven, CT). Her proximity will sure enable lots of collaborative work in the future!


Four recent publications of Emma:


[ocean acidification, hypoxia, Atlantic silverside, nearshore pH and oxygen fluctuations, transgenerational effects, climate change]
crosse2@southernct.edu | Emma Cross publications


Chris Murray (PhD student 2014-2019)

Chris-Murray

Christopher Murray started his PhD at UConn/Avery Point in September 2014, after finishing his MS in May 2014 at Stony Brook University, NY. While building on his experience in ocean acidification research, for his PhD he studyied multi-stressor effects of OA and hypoxia on coastal marine fishes. He had an outstanding, large part in designing and building our factorial larval rearing system (“Larval city”) in UConn Rankin Seawater lab. The system allows up to nine independent, static or fluctuating CO2 x O2 environments simultaneously. It has been in full use during spring and summer months of the past four years.

After 4 phenomenally dedicated years, Chris defended his PhD in December 2018 and graduated in May 2019 with this PhD from UConn.
His thesis titled

An experimental evaluation of the sensitivity of coastal marine fishers acidification, hypoxia, and warming

is publicly available at the OpenCommons Site of the UConn Library.


In July 2019, Chris started his new chapter of science an life on the west coast with the University of Washington. He can be reached at csm187@uw.edu. Congrats Chris, you will do great!


Four recent publications of Chris:


Deanna Elliott (NSF REU student 2019)

Deanna-Elliott
Deanna Elliott is a junior at Arizona State University who joined the Baumann lab in summer 2019 as our third NSF-REU student. Deanna has experimented with locusts before, but now became an expert fish rearer. For her REU-project she reared Atlantic silverside larvae under different feeding regimes to create fish of different body sizes and then analyzed them for trace levels of mercury in their tissue. She tested the hypothesis that mercury concentrations in fish can be used as a proxy for ingestion rates, which are important to trophic ecosystem models to perform better.

Great job, Deanna!


[Atlantic silverside, Menidia menidia, mercury, ingestion rates]
dbellio2@asu.edu


Julie Pringle (MS student 2016-18)

Julie-Pringle

Hannes-and-Julie-striped-bass

Julie Pringle started her MS in the Baumann lab in September 2016 and graduated in December 2018. During her time, Julie painstakingly investigated the growth and selective survival in juvenile Atlantic silversides (Menidia menidia) collected in fall 2015 in Mumford Cove. She was the first student in our lab to fully use our Image Analysis system, counting more than 30,000 individual increments in 300 of her selected specimens. Her research shed new light on a particularly intriguing aspect of silverside life history; i.e., that this species exhibits temperature-dependent sex determination. Under laboratory conditions, colder temperatures produce more females than warmer temperatures, which should lead to females being born earlier during the season than males. However, Julie’s study showed that survivors at the end of the growing season consist of more females than expected and that those females were larger NOT because they were born earlier, but because they grew significantly faster than their male conspecifics.

During her time, Julie never shied away from selflessly helping other students and the lab with tasks unrelated to her thesis, something we truly loved about her and will always be grateful for. She also became a brilliant Teaching Assistant and was a loved and active member of the graduate student community.

Julie has moved back now to Martha’s Vineyard, where she started her new position as Field Science Coordinator for the local Great Pond Foundation. Julie says:

There’s a really an amazing network of wildlife biologists at various organizations on the Vineyard, and I’m very excited to be working side-by-side with so many, who originally encouraged me to become a scientist. I’ll be doing field work, but also data analysis and working with interns, so it will be a fun combination of different types of work.”


Julie’s Masters Thesis “Sex-Specific Hatch and Growth Patterns in Young-of-the-Year Atlantic Silversides (Menidia menidia, Atherinopsidae) from Mumford Cove, Connecticut” is accessible via the OpenCommons Site of the UConn Library.

Julie’s thesis research has recently been published in Marine Ecology Progress Series:

Pringle, J.W. and Baumann, H. (2019) Otolith-based growth reconstructions in young-of-year Atlantic silversides (Menidia menidia) and their implications for sex-selective survivalMarine Ecology Progress Series 632:193-204


[Atlantic silverside, climate change, Mumford Cove, otolith microstructure analysis, growth, selective survival]
julie.pringle@uconn.edu


Sydney Stark (NSF REU student 2018)

Sydney-Stark
Sydney Stark  joined our lab from June to August 2018 as our second REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) student in collaboration with Mystic Aquarium. Sydney is a Junior at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and interested in aspects of marine conservation and effects of climate change. Sydney spend her summer testing a prototype of a light trap designed to catch larval and juvenile fish and used it to infer seasonal patterns of ichthyoplankton abundance in nearshore Long Island Sound. In just a short period of time, Sydney became a true ichthyoplankton taxonomist and found that light traps truly work in our waters. Well done Sydney, and all the best for the next career steps!

In her hometown, Sydney’s REU project already received coverage by the local newspaper. See here!

Check out some of Sydney’s best larval fish pictures below:

[Long Island Sound, ichthtyoplankton, light trap, otolith, Atlantic silverside, Menhaden]
sks7111@uncw.edu


Jacob Snyder (MS student 2015-17)

Jacob-Snyder
Jacob Snyder joined the lab in September 2015 and graduated in December 2017 with his Master’s degree. For his Master’s thesis, Jake painstakingly took it upon himself to retrieve and digitize the 40+ year time series of environmental observations from Project Oceanology. This non-profit ocean literacy organization has educated middle and high school students on boat trips to nearby estuarine sites for decades. For the first time, his work allowed a quantitative evaluation of these data and glimpses into the abiotic and biotic changes in nearshore waters of Eastern Long Island Sound.

A research paper based on Jake’s thesis was published in March 2019 in the peer-reviewed journal Marine Environmental Research.

  • Snyder, J.T., Whitney, M.M., Dam, H.G., Jacobs, M.W., and Baumann, H. (2019). Citizen science observations reveal rapid, multi-decadal ecosystem changes in eastern Long Island Sound. Marine Environmental Research 146: 80-88

    His Masters Thesis “Analysis of a Newly Digitized Long-Term Dataset of Environmental Observations from Long Island Sound” is accessible via the OpenCommons Site of the UConn Library.


  • During his time at the Baumann lab, Jake also conducted experiments on potential maternal effects and their influence on offspring CO2 sensitivity, published 2018 in the Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology

    [ocean acidification, hypoxia, Atlantic silverside, climate change, long-term data set, Long Island Sound]
    jacob.snyder@uconn.edu | Jake’s website


    James Harrington (technician)

    JamesHarrington
    James Harrington  joined the team in May 2017 to help with our various endeavors rearing fish in the Rankin Lab. He is currently maintaining population crosses of Atlantic silversides from different locations along the Atlantic Coast, which together with our colleagues from Cornell will facilitate describing and annotating the genome of this species. He is also helping with our biweekly beach seine surveys, assisting Chris with large factorial CO2 x O2 experiments on Atlantic silverside offspring, and has lent a hand to our REU student Elle with her summer work.

    He’s is currently working as an instructor for the New England Science & Sailing Foundation (NESS) in Stonington, CT


    [Atlantic silverside, genome, Mumford Cove, RNA, growth]
    james.harrington@uconn.edu


    Elle Parks (NSF REU student 2017)

    Elle-Parks_s
    Elle Parks  joined our lab from June to August 2017 as the first REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) student on a recently funded NSF REU project in collaboration with Mystic Aquarium. She is a Junior at the University of Connecticut in Storrs and interested in aspects of marine conservation and effects of climate change. Her project looked at the presumed metabolic costs of high CO2 environments on fish larvae. Elle co-authored a manuscript that resulted from her work


    [Atlantic silverside, ocean acidification, starvation, costs]
    elle.parks@uconn.edu