Department Head, Professor of Fisheries
selina.heppell [at] oregonstate.edu
I devote most of my research to some of the oldest and slowest-growing animals in the sea: sea turtles, sharks, sturgeon, and west coast rockfish (scientifically know as Sebastes, which means "magnificent:). These marine animals share three traits: long lifespans, late age at maturity, and threats from overharvest. I primarily use computer models and simulations to help us understand how these animals respond to human impacts and to guide research and management policy towards their recovery. I am particularly interested in how these animals will respond to climate change and increasing human populations on our coastlines. I do some of my research with my husband, Scott, who is also a professor and fish biologist, and with our son, Dylan. We teach a conservation biology course in Eastern Europe and study sex-changing fishes in the Caribbean. Students in our lab study a diverse array of organisms, with a common theme of connecting different levels of “biological organization” – from cells to ecosystems – in scientifically rigorous studies that promote conservation and sustainable use.