I have a broad interest in the population, community and behavioral ecology of coral reef fishes. Using a range of laboratory and field experiments I assess the influence sensory cues have on the behavior of coral reef organisms, focusing on the use of chemical cues in settlement site selection by larval fishes and corals. Although much of my work focuses on the early life stage or marine organisms, I have previously, and will continue to conduct research on the behavior of adult organisms. My recent research focuses on the recognition of degraded habitat by coral reef organisms and the consequences their behavioral choices on effective marine management.
My lab focuses on four interconnected research areas: the use of sensory cues in settlement site selection; connectivity of the marine environment; behavioral interactions between species; and the effect of anthropogenic changes, such as ocean acidification and terrestrial runoff, on the behavior of marine organisms. These efforts are linked by a common theme: understanding how marine animals sense their environment, how they are able to use this information to make decisions on optimal habitat choice and consequences these behavioral choices have on marine conservation and management in a changing environment.