Larval Dispersal and Connectivity

How do physical and biological factors influence settlement and survival of marine organisms into reef-based populations? How are populations connected via larval dispersal and/or movements of juveniles and adults? How and why do animals use habitat? These questions are fundamental for understanding population and community dynamics and the answers will inform pressing management issues including the design of marine protected areas, spatial scales of fisheries management, and both the resilience and recovery of marine populations in the face of disturbance.

While my research is largely field-based, I collaborate with physical oceanographers and modelers to simulate larval trajectories using ROMS and other modeling approaches. We also use work with tools such as otolith microchemistry, genetics and acoustic telemetry to test for patterns of connectivity among locations.


Jenn Caselle's headshot

Jenn Caselle

By training I am a marine ecologist, with specific interests in the study of kelp forest and coral reef ecosystems. My research focuses on the ecology of coastal marine organisms, their role in nearshore ecosystems, and the response of these ecosystems to environmental change and human impacts.

Peter Carlson

Peter has been working with the Caselle Lab since 2007 and join the lab full time after graduating from UCSB with a BS in Aquatic Science to 2008. In 2015 Peter was awarded his Masters in Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology for his work on parrotfish movement patterns and their benthic impact at Palmyra Atoll National Wildlife Refuge.

Anita Giraldo Ospina

Anita is a postdoctoral researcher who conducts quantitative spatial modeling of kelp forest to identify the best environmental and biotic variables to which kelp responds to, with the aim of identifying the best locations to conduct kelp restoration efforts in California.