Research Interests:Tom Laidig works in the Habitat Ecology Team of NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service at the SWFSC Fisheries Ecology Division. Tom earned his BS in Aquatic Biology at University of California, Santa Barbara and his MS in Marine Biology at San Francisco State University before beginning his career with NMFS as a biological technician in 1988. His first duties were to daily age juvenile rockfish otoliths. He soon advanced to a Research Biologist and worked on such projects as distribution and diet relationships between large deep and shallow slope fish, aging lingcod for an 8-year age and growth study along the California and Oregon coasts, and juvenile rockfish recruitment studies. He has completed more than 25 publications. Tom became a NOAA diver in 1995 and Unit Diving Supervisor in 1996. He currently runs the diving program at the lab and he uses his diving abilities to study different aspects of rockfish biology, especially juvenile settlement to the nearshore environment. In 2000, he joined Mary Yoklavich in the new Habitat Ecology Team. This was a good pairing since both researchers studied rockfish in situ, with Mary studying the deeper living ones and the Tom the shallower species.