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Paola Lopez
(Former Postdoctoral Student)
Email: lopez-duarte @ rutgers.edu
Phone: (856) 785-0074 x4326
Fax: (856) 785-1544
Address: Paola Lopez-Duarte
Haskin Shellfish Research Laboratory
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
6959 Miller Avenue
Port Norris, New Jersey 08349
  Click here to download CV.
Research Interests:

My research interests focus on the ecology and behavior of marine and estuarine invertebrates. My doctoral research examined the role of circatidal swimming rhythms in the selective tidal-stream transport (STST) behavior of fiddler crab larvae and postlarvae (megalopae). The study included (1) a comparison of the rhythms exhibited by larvae inhabiting different tidal regimes, (2) an examination of the factors influencing the period and phase of the rhythm, and (3) a geographic and phylogenetic comparison of the STST behaviors of over 15 species of Uca from a broad range of estuarine and coastal habitats.

Currently, I am part of the ongoing Bivalve Connectivity Project, which combines ROMS/ADCIRC modeling and elemental fingerprinting approaches to assess variability in larval connectivity and its demographic consequences for mytilid mussel populations in southern California. The project involves a comparison of three model species: Mytilus californianus, Mytilus galloprovincialis, and Musculista senhousia, which occupy open coast, outer bay, and inner bay habitats, respectively.

My future research goal is to further investigate the much needed behavioral components of bio-physical models to understand the implications on population connectivity. I am particularly interested in incorporating larval behaviors into particle tracking and circulation models to determine the relative influence of vertical swimming behaviors and physical processes on the temporal and spatial distribution of larvae.

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Updated September 29, 2010
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