Fisheries Ecology Division

Santa Cruz LabLocated at the western edge of Santa Cruz, California on the coastal bluff at Terrace Point, the Fisheries Ecology Division joins the adjacent UC Santa Cruz's Long Marine Laboratory and a growing complex of marine research facilities at this site.

Research is focused on Pacific coast groundfish and Pacific salmon. Groundfish under study include rockfishes, flatfishes, Pacific whiting, sablefish, and lingcod; salmon include coho, chinook, and steelhead. Results of this research are used by the Pacific Fishery Management Council to manage fisheries and by NMFS to manage threatened and endangered species. Fisheries Ecology Division scientists study causes of variability in abundance and health of fish populations, analyze ecological relations in marine communities, and study the economics of exploiting and protecting natural resources. They also assess the stocks of species targeted by various fisheries, and assist in evaluating potential impacts of human activities on threatened or endangered species.

Please use the left-side menu to learn more about the SWFSC Fisheries Ecology Division.

Division News

2015 Rockfish Recruitment and Ecosystem Assessment Survey Highlights Unusual Ocean Conditions

The Fisheries Ecology Division’s Rockfish Recruitment and Ecosystem Assessment Survey has concluded, completing the 33rd year of evaluating the abundance and distribution of pelagic young-of-the-year rockfish and other groundfish off central California and the 11th year of sampling off southern and northern California.

Saving the Leatherback Sea Turtle - Podcast

The Leatherback is a most unusual species of sea turtle. In the Pacific, it's also among the most endangered. In honor of World Sea Turtle Day (June 16) join SWFSC biologist Scott Benson whose research on leatherbacks is

NOAA Fisheries Mobilizes to Gauge Unprecedented West Coast Toxic Algal Bloom

Offshore survey will measure extent and severity of largest harmful algal bloom in more than a decade NOAA Fisheries' Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle has mobilized extra scientists to join a fisheries survey along the West

Scientists Can’t Get There but Honey Badger Can

Scientists Can’t Get There but Honey Badger Can

Scientists Studying Blue Whales use DNA and Photo-ID to Reveal an Epic Journey by “Isabela” and the First Link to Breeding Ground for Chilean Blue Whales

Isabela, the blue whale, links Chile’s Gulf of Corcovado to the Galapagos. Little is known of long distance movements of world’s biggest animal.

Scientists Use Unmanned Aerial Vehicle to Study Gray Whales from Above

A rare opportunity to study how the environment limits the growth of a recovered population of large whales.