About the Buskey Lab

The Buskey lab focuses on the behavioral ecology of marine zooplankton, and how sensory perception mediates behavioral adaptations for locating food resources, avoiding predators and finding mates. Much of this research makes use of video microcinematography, high speed digital holography and automated video-computer methods for image and motion analysis. The Buskey lab also investigates photoreception in mediating potential predator-prey interactions within the plankton, including the role of bioluminescence in nocturnal predator-prey interactions, the role of vision in the feeding of larval fish on zooplankton and the role of sunlight in vertical migration of oceanic plankton to avoid visual predators. We also study the role of planktonic grazers in harmful algal bloom dynamics.  


Dr. Buskey serves as the Research Coordinator for the Mission-Aransas National Estuarine Research Reserve (Reserve). Within the Reserve, the Buskey lab runs the System Wide Monitoring Program (SWMP) which measures water quality at six stations within the Reserve at 15 minute intervals. We also monitor nutrient concentrations and monitor phytoplankton and zooplankton populations on a monthly basis. Additionally, Reserve research includes studies of climate change, freshwater inflows,nutrient loads and harmful algal blooms.

Currently the Buskey lab also leads the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) Dispersion Research on Oil: Physics and Plankton Studies. Dr. Buskey is the director of a consortium of six research institutions studying how physical processes and chemical dispersants break up crude oil patches in the sea, and the impacts of this dispersed oil on the base of the marine food web (bacteria, phytoplankton and zooplankton).
Subpages (2): Courses Projects