People


Current Students

Linsey Haram (PhD) 

Linsey is interested in how humans impact estuarine ecosystems and the ecological communities within them. For her PhD she is investigating the effects of an invasive seaweed on the ecosystem structure and function of Georgia and South Carolina’s salt marshes. Some of her previous experiences include monitoring the spread of invasive shrimp in New England estuaries and using parasites’ genetic information to track invasion pathways at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center.

R. Daniel Harris (PhD) 

Website: robertdanielharris.com

Daniel is interested in spatial interactions between ecosystem engineers and how small changes to these interactions could cause major ecosystem function shifts. He has 6 years of experience coordinating oyster restoration and living shoreline projects, which has lead to his current work studying oyster and Spartina interactions.

Rachel Smith (PhD) 

Website: rachelssmith.com

Rachel is interested in understanding the mechanisms and effects of expanding ecosystem engineers. In her doctoral work, she is exploring how interactions between black mangroves and salt marsh species influence mangrove expansion success and invertebrate community composition. Previous work includes studies of community development in fouling communities in southeast Australia, effects of ocean acidification on larval oysters, and community effects of geoduck aquaculture in Washington State.

alex-leeAlex Lee (PhD)

Alex is interested in community ecology and parasitology. Some of his previous work include investigating the nature and spread of invasive Spartina in San Francisco Bay salt marshes and the conservation genetics of an endangered hemiparasitic plant. He is co-advised with Michael Yabsley in the IDEAS program.

Jeff Beauvais (PhD)

Jeff is an ICON student interested in the impacts of coastal development on the ecological processes and integrity of salt marshes. He is also interested in understanding how social vulnerability might facilitate coastal development, and how this process feeds back to affect local communities.

Research Technician

Julie Blaze 

Julie is a research technician in the Byers lab and has been working with the team since January 2016.  She is interested in community ecology.  Some of her previous work includes studying community dynamics in eelgrass beds, monitoring recovery of disturbed sandy shore habitats, and surveying migrating shorebird foraging behaviors.

Affiliated Graduate Students

Kaitlin Kinney (M.S., Ohio State University)

 Kaitlin examines the role of biotic resistance on the invasion of the southeastern USA by the porcelain crab, Petrolisthes armatus

Chelsea Crosby (M.S., Ohio State University)

Chelsea examines how learning affects foraging decisions of predators to include the novel invasive prey porcelain crab, Petrolisthes armatus, in their diets.

Undergraduate Students

John Coffin

He is an Ecology and Marine Science double major, who has been working with the lab since Fall 2013.  As a CURO Fellow, he researched oyster larval patterns as they relate to current and wave energy.  He is about to begin graduate school at Kansas State.

Katie Maddox

She is a third year Ecology student who has been working with the lab since September 2014.  As a CURO fellow, Katie studied the impacts of an invasive alga on blue crab foraging behavior. 

Sydney Bourget

She is an Ecology student who has been working with the lab since September 2014.  As a CURO fellow, she is studying the effects of physical factors on infaunal species on oyster reefs.

Kelly Mayes

She is an Ecology student helping with a project studying the impact of snail grazing on marsh grass health.  She has been with the lab since Fall 2016.

Clarissa Keisling

Clarissa, anEcology student, has been working with the lab since Summer 2016 on a project studying oyster larval dynamics.  As a CURO fellow, she is studying the distribution of microplastics across an estuary. 

Adam Greer

Adam is a Genetics and Chinese double major, who is working with the lab measuring oyster larval dynamics.  He has been with the lab since Fall 2016. 

Diane Klement

Diane is an Art and Ecology student working on a project studying the impacts of an invasive alga on marsh grass health.  She has been working with the lab since Fall 2016.

Emily Noakes

She is a student in Marine Science and is helping with a project studying the interactions between marsh grass and mangroves.  She has been helping with the lab since Spring 2017.

Claire Sammons

Claire is an Ecology student, who has been helping in the lab since Spring 2017.  She is working on a project studying the interactions between marsh grass and mangroves. 

Completed Graduate Students

John Meyer (M.S.,2005), 2006 NOAA Josh A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellow. Associate Director of Science Communications, College of the Environment, Univ. of Washington.

Blaine Griffen (Ph.D., 2007), Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Biology, Univ. of South Carolina.

Aaren Freeman (Ph.D., 2007), Assoc. Professor, Dept of Biology, Adelphi University, NY.

April Blakeslee (Ph.D., 2007), Asst. Professor, Dept of Biology, East Carolina University.

Laura Page (M.S., 2009), Middle school science teacher, Watertown, MA.

Irit Altman (Ph.D., 2009), Asst. Research Scientist at Boston University.

Wan-Jean Lee (Ph.D., 2012), 2012 NOAA John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellow.  Research Scientist with the National Climate Change Secretariat, Singapore. 

William McDowell (Ph.D., 2014), Assistant Professor, Merrimack College.

Virginia Schutte (Ph.D., 2014), Science Communication Coordinator, Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON).

Jennafer Malek (Ph.D., 2015), 2016 NOAA John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellow. Communications and Policy Specialist, NOAA Marine Debris Program and Research Fellow, Marine Mammal Commission.

Carolyn Keogh (Ph.D., 2016), Lecturer and Undergraduate Coordinator at the Odum School of Ecology, Univ. of Georgia.

Alyssa Gehman (Ph.D., 2016), NSF postdoctoral Fellow, at Univ. of British Columbia with Dr. Chris Harley.

Completed Post-docs

Lauren Pintor (2010), Asst. Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resources, Ohio State University.

Heidi Weiskel (2011), Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW)

Safra Altman (2012), Army Corp of Engineers, Vicksburg, MS

Jayna Devore (2013), postdoc at the University of Sydney with Dr. Richard Shine.

Paula Pappalardo (2015), postdoc at the University of Georgia with Dr. Craig Osenberg.