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Student Research

FSUCML Graduate and undergraduate students are not only imperative to the function and ingenuity of the marine lab, but also to that of ABSI.  Their enthusiasm, inquisitiveness, and creativity are contagious to everyone with whom they interact on the laboratory campus, including the staff, each other, and the faculty. Read below to learn about some of their research projects.

Graduate Students

Ph.D. student, Donaven Baughman, has been working with the Apalachicola Bay System Initiative (ABSI) team in SCUBA surveys of 25x25m plots to quantify the abundance of oyster drills (S. haemastoma) at three sites in Apalachicola Bay. Oyster drills are snails that are oyster predators and prefer higher salinity water. The team is surveying to see if there are different abundances of oyster drills in different areas of the Bay that may experience different salinity regimes. They also are measuring the oyster drills to determine if there are different salinity tolerances depending on size and age of the drills.

Undergraduate Students - UROP

Brentley Durham spent the fall semester with the ABSI Lab conducting research for her Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) project on Eastern Oyster Demographics within the intertidal area of Alligator Harbor and was honored to present this winter at the 2023 Florida Undergraduate Research Conference (FURC) in Miami, FL. 

Brentley's project involved partnering with ABSI researchers, technicians, and volunteers to develop and conduct intertidal monitoring of oyster population condition, predation, and localized water quality parameters at multiple sites within Alligator Harbor. The work involved rigorous field days on FSU boats and kayaks, searching for oysters. Through inconsistent weather during the fall months, Brentley was eager to collect valuable data. Brentley's overarching goal is to continue ABSI's understanding of Alligator Harbor's intertidal ecosystem, aiming to develop and implement strategies to promote the overall health of the Bay.

Brentley will be presenting her research with ABSI at the Undergraduate Research Symposium this April.