Scott Hamilton Explores Climate Change Impact on Groundfish Species

Associate Professor of Ichthyology Scott Hamilton was awarded three research grants over the past three months, totaling more than $700,000. All three grants were awarded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the Department of Commerce. The research will focus on improving fisheries management and understanding the effects of climate change on commercially important groundfish species along the U.S. West Coast.

Two of the projects involve collaborative work with the fishing industry to understand geographic variation in the demography and life history of lingcod and canary rockfish, two species that have recently recovered from severe overfishing. The goal is to provide high resolution information on stock status along the coast that will be utilized by NOAA to inform upcoming stock assessments and aid fisheries management.

The third project investigates the effects of ocean acidification and hypoxia (low oxygen levels), two environmental stressors associated with climate change, on the reproductive capacity of rockfish and other groundfish species. The goals of this project are to understand how climate change will impact reproduction, embryo development, and larval performance in the face of changing ocean chemistry.

Students with large ling cod

SJSU students at Moss Landing Marine Labs holding a large ling cod.