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Nicole E. Phillips

The broad framework for my research is the population and community ecology of benthic marine organisms in coastal systems. I am generally interested in, and work across, several fields of research encompassing rocky reef/intertidal ecology, recruitment, larval ecology, and invertebrate biology, but also including coral reef and seagrass systems. My work has often focused primarily (although not exclusively) on the ecology of reproduction and early life-history stages (e.g. eggs, larvae, early juveniles) of marine invertebrates. Marine invertebrates are well known for their diverse reproductive and developmental strategies, and these strategies have consequences for the ecology of organisms through influences on population dynamics and patterns of dispersal and recruitment, while also underpinning our understanding of life history evolution.

Early life stages are also particularly vulnerable to stress. For coastal marine organisms, anthropogenic drivers (e.g. climate change, sediment and pollutants from terrestrial run-off) may interact with each other and with natural drivers to affect organisms in unanticipated ways. I am especially interested in how factors or stresses that influence one life stage may have cryptic effects on subsequent life stages, as well as the potential interactive effects of multiple stressors.

Copper Levels Affect Gonads And Offspring Development For Female Sea Urchins

Coastal ecosystems, especially near densely populated areas, are often impacted by pollution, including metals, that enter the sea via run-off.  Copper is a common component of polluted run-off, coming from a variety of sources including building materials, paints and wood […]