Researchers in the Phycology Lab at MLML study the physiology, ecology and evolutionary biology of seaweeds and their associated communities. Our work focuses primarily on rocky shore intertidal and subtidal seaweeds of the Pacific Coast of North America, and the unique seaweed assemblages of the Gulf of California. Current and former Phycology Lab researchers have worked both locally and throughout the world, including the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary; the Channel Islands and mainland of southern California; Alaska; Baja California, Mexico; Chile; Australia; New Zealand; the Arctic and Antarctica.
Our program emphasizes the integration of fundamental organismal biology with contemporary advances in quantitative ecology, technological analysis, and numerical modeling. Most of our funded research currently focuses on kelp-based systems (large brown algae of the order Laminariales), as we have found them to be extremely amenable to both laboratory and field study. Our research questions, technologies, and approaches, however, are broadly applicable to terrestrial and marine habitats and organisms and offer a variety of opportunities to MLML students conducting both basic and applied research.