James Morris ’09 PHD spends his time plotting defenses for invasions. No, he doesn’t work for the Department for Homeland Security, and he’s not in the military.
Morris, who did his doctoral work at NC State’s Center for Marine Sciences and Technology (CMAST), is an ecologist at the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science’s Center for Coastal Fisheries and Habitat Research in Beaufort, N.C. In our upcoming issue of NC State magazine, we profile his work for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on invasive species, like Asian tiger shrimp and lionfish, that have come into North Carolina’s waters. (Photo courtesy of the National Ocean Service)
But Morris’ work goes beyond those invasive pests. He’s also a leading researcher in the field of aquaculture, which is the cultivation of marine species and aquatic life for either consumption by humans or for use in biofuels. From its use on trout or catfish farms to its implementation in the ocean, aquaculture is a science that’s meaning more these days with the demand for seafood constantly growing while supplies are flatlining.
‘There are job creation opportunities,’ Morris says. ‘There are a lot of reasons we think marine aquaculture is poised to expand.’