Rachel Parsons

Research Specialist and Microbial Observatory Laboratory Manager (BIOS)
1 (441) 297-1880 x726


I am a Bermudian who's research focus is in microbial oceanography and coral reef microbial ecology. I am a specialist in microscopy and image analyses and act as the resident laboratory manager of the NSF-funded Oceanic Microbial Observatory at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Science. Although I participate in many projects at BIOS I have worked with the Carlson Lab on various projects since 1998.


I have participated in many different projects during my tenure at BIOS, ranging from open ocean DOM biogeochemistry to inshore water quality. Since 1997 my research has focused on microbial oceanography in conjunction with the Carlson Lab at UCSB and the Giovannoni Lab at Oregon State University. I have developed image analysis protocols for enumerating bacteria and viruses using epiflourescent microscopy. I continue to develop working methods for investigating the distribution of specific members of the microbial communities in the open ocean at the Bermuda Atlantic Time-series Study site using FISH and CARD-FISH. As a Bermudian, I am also interested in the inshore waters and have projects investigating 'local' issues such as the microbial communities of the inshore waters, around sewage outfalls, and on/around corals and sponges.