Dr. Megan Dethier - Marine Intertidal Ecology





My work focuses on a variety of basic and applied aspects of the ecology of marine and estuarine shorelines. Currently I am working on or have recently completed 3 projects:

1) an NSF-funded study of the ecophysiology of the common intertidal seaweed Fucus (with Dr. Susan Williams, Bodega Marine Laboratory), studying how environmental stresses and herbivory affect how Fucus allocates energy to growth, reproduction, defense, and other critical features. More details, and downloadable temperature data, at http://faculty.washington.edu/mdethier/Fucus/

2) a SeaGrant funded project on the ecology of the invasive salt marsh grass, Spartina anglica, in Puget Sound.

3) a long-term project funded by Washington Sea Grant and Washington Dept. of Natural Resources involving trying to understand gradients of species diversity along the shoreline in Puget Sound. We have supplemented long-term mapping and monitoring data with experimental work examining recruitment and growth of organisms along the estuarine gradient. For more information go to Shoreline Diversity Patterns in Puget Sound

Several of these studies build upon a classification system for marine and estuarine habitats that I wrote in the late 1980s, and that has contributed to a National Marine Classification System. These projects also relate to efforts to establish marine protected areas, since to protect marine organisms and habitats, one must first be able to categorize them and understand the processes that maintain their communities. I have also contributed to a book on marine shoreline monitoring protocols, published in 2006.