California State University Long Beach

The Shark lab was founded in 1966 by Dr. Donald Nelson, a pioneer and innovator of acoustic telemetry. After his passing in 1997, one of Don’s former master’s students, Dr. Christopher Lowe, took on the responsibility of continuing the legacy of the Shark lab in 1998. Since then, the Shark lab has become one of the largest acoustic telemetry labs on the west coast with over 100 VR2W receivers and deploying over 4,000 acoustic tags in the last 17 years. The Shark lab is dedicated to the study of the physiological and behavioral ecology of sharks, rays and other economically important gamefishes. Species tagged and tracked in the Shark lab include: barred sand bass (Paralabrax nebulifer), California sheephead (Semicossyphus pulcher), California halibut (Paralichthys californicus), California scorpionfish (Scorpaena guttata), Gray Smooth hound sharks (Mustelus californicus), kelp bass (Paralabrax clathratus), leopard grouper (Mycteroperca rosacea), leopard sharks (Triakis semifasciata), lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus), ocean whitefish (Caulolatilus princeps), rockfish species (Sebastes sp.), round stingray (Urobatis halleri), shovelnose guitarfish (Rhinobatos productus), spiny lobster (Panulirus interruptus), spotted sand bass (Paralabrax maculatofasciatus), white croaker (Genyonemus lineatus), white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias), and yellow snapper (Lutjanus argentiventris).

Interested in learning more about the Shark lab? Check out more on the CSULBSharkLab website.

California State University Northridge: Allen Lab: Nearshore Marine Fish Research Program (NMFRP)


The long-term goal of NMFRP is to provide the scientific information necessary for the effective management of our nearshore fish resources. Even at this late date, much of the basic life history information on the NMFRP target species has major gaps or is missing entirely. Over all, very little is known about the abundance, distribution, settlement, critical habitat, reproductive behavior, movement, population genetics and dispersal for these important recreational and commercial species. NMFRP is dedicated to filling these gaps.

Target Species
Giant (black) sea bass (Stereolepis gigas), yellowtail (Seriola dorsalis), white seabass (Atractoscion nobilis), kelp bass (Paralabrax clathratus), barred sand bass (Paralabrax nebulifer), spotted sand bass (Paralabrax maculatofasciatus), and California halibut (Paralichthys californicus).

Want to know more about NMFRP at CSUN? Check out the Allen Lab website

NOAA Fisheries, Southwest Fisheries Science Center

NOAA’s SWFSC in La Jolla, CA conducts biological, economic, and oceanographic research to monitor the region’s living resources and promote sustainable fisheries and a healthy marine ecosystem. Part of this research involves gaining pertinent information on commercially important fish species through tagging studies to better understand fish recovery post catch and release, fish behavior and movements, and fish habitat usage.

Want to know more? Check out the NOAA Southwest Fisheries Science Center

NOAA’s Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary

In 2000, the Partnership for Interdisciplinary Studies of Oceans (PISCO) at the University of California, Santa Barbara began investigating the relationship between temperature and fish connectivity among the Channel Islands and mainland. In this effort, PISCO and Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary (CINMS) have collaboratively developed and are maintaining 13 subsurface mooring sites across the sanctuary. To study fish movements, VEMCO VR2Ws supplied by CINMS, the California State University Long Beach Shark Lab and Monterey Bay Aquarium were added to the sites to support a larger array looking at movements of White Sharks along the West Coast. Because VEMCO equipment is commonly used in the region by researchers, this project is effective at providing additional array coverage to multiple research partners (Aquarium of the Bay, Scripps Research Institute, University of California, Davis, University of California Santa Barbara and the Monterey Bay Aquarium) and CINMS provides relevant detection data from the Sanctuary. Information from the array is useful for Sanctuary managers to understand the connectivity of the islands to other habitats along the California Coast. This helps ensure the effectiveness of the Sanctuary by giving CINMS staff an idea of the Channel Island’s role for large mobile predators in relation to the greater Southern California Bight.

Learn more about NOAA’s Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary here.

The City of Newport Beach

The City of Newport Beach includes Balboa Peninsula, Lido Marina Village, Mariner’s Mile, Balboa Island, Corona Del Mar, Newport Center, Newport Coast, and The Islands of Newport Harbor. In efforts to learn more about local shark behavior, the City has purchased and deployed three acoustic telemetry tracking devices near their beaches. Data from these receivers will help to create educational plans to teach Newport ocean users about the marine animals that frequently appear in their coastal waters.

The Semmens Lab at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego

Members of the Semmens Lab focus on applied questions in fisheries management and conservation biology. Our approaches to these questions are varied, but typically involve both fieldwork and analytic techniques. We maintain active field programs both locally, and in the tropics. Lab members have particular strengths in quantitative theory and tools, including stock assessment, time series analysis, mark-recapture analysis, and stable isotope mixing model theory and methods. At present, we maintain acoustic arrays off of La Jolla, in the Cayman Islands, and in Turks and Caicos.

Want to know more? Check out the SCRIPPS acoustic telemetry website lajollaarray.org

University of California Santa Barbara : The McCauley Lab

The McCauley Lab located at University of California Santa Barbara is headed by Dr. Douglas McCauley. McCauley Lab researchers are broadly interested in understanding how ecological communities work and how their operation is shifting in a rapidly changing world. Researching the ecology of animal movement often takes center stage in the lab and researchers in the group have tracked sharks, manta rays, and even hippos. McCauley Lab researchers work in a wide range of systems, including the savannas in Africa, remote coral reefs in the central Pacific, and the waters just off of the California coast.

Want to know more? Check out the McCauley lab website