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Internship Opportunity

Analysis of Ocean Acidification and Co-stressor Effects on Fish Early-life Processes

Posted on: 02/07/2019

Summary / Description

This project evaluates the potential effects of ocean acidification and other environmental co-stressors on fish populations. The effects on fish of an increased level of ocean acidification –another consequence of C02 emissions – are largely unknown and represent a new and exciting research front. We are using a combination of field, laboratory, and experimental data to address this topic with respect to resource fish species of the northeastern USA. The student will be directly involved in laboratory experiments that address components of this larger research effort. Among other activities in 2019, we will be conducting experiments on the direct and interactive effects of C02 (acidity), dissolved oxygen (DO), and thermal regimes on embryos and larvae of fish or shellfish, and assessing the adaptive potential of the fish species to these stressors. Candidate species for 2019 include summer flounder, winter flounder, Atlantic silverside, Atlantic killifish, and horseshoe crab. Response metrics of special interest this year are growth, development, metabolic and consumption rates, behavioral responses, and predation risk.

Skills Required

This project opportunity is for undergraduates. As part of our research team, your duties and responsibilities will include:

  1. Schedule permitting, participate in lab-wide open house for public (May 19, 2019) at which the student will join the group in providing oral summaries to public about the group’s research and the student’s expected role in lab research.
  2. Participate in weekly internship discussions on topics pertinent to independent and collaborative research, graduate school, presentation and professional skills, networking, and careers in science among others.
  3. Acquire spawning fish and/or fertilized fish eggs.
  4. Implement and maintain laboratory experiments on the effects of CO2, DO, and/or thermal variations on early life features of experimental fish including their growth, development, and survival.
  5. Collect, reduce, and summarize data on fish embryos, larvae, and juveniles from direct observations, digital images, and video tracking.
  6. Analyze data, prepare presentation material, and present a summary of project in July to staff.
  7. Support role in ongoing laboratory experiments and analyses. The student will work among other undergraduate and graduate students, research associates, and NOAA scientists.

Skills required:

Applicant attributes given preference in decision to offer hosting for summer at my lab:

  1. Majoring in biological, marine, or environmental fields; primary interest in ecology, evolution, life history, ecotoxicology, and/or quantitative methods.
  2. Prior research experience in any scientific discipline.
  3. On academic trajectory that very likely includes graduate school for M.Sc. and/or Ph.D.
  4. Willingness to work in the laboratory with some field collections of adults, prey, etc., all potentially requiring some irregularity in work schedule (e.g., early morning, late evening, and weekends as project dictates).
  5. Strong work ethic, detail oriented, organized, completes assignments in a timely manner, works well individually and as a member of a team, communicates clearly.
  6. Computer literacy - MS Office applications; image analysis software (training provided), experience with statistical programs encouraged but not required.


Highlands, NJ

Other Information

Intern Supervisor:
R. Christopher Chambers
Number of Slots Available:
Is free housing available:
Can international students be placed:


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