Philip M. Gravinese

Dr. Philip Gravinese joined the Mote team in February 2017. His research interests focus primarily on determining how environmental stressors, like ocean acidification, elevated seawater temperatures, hypoxia, and red tide will impact the reproductive biology, development, and behavior of commercially important crustaceans (stone crabs, blue crabs, and spiny lobster). During his Master’s research he raised larval stone crabs from hatching in order to perform experiments that were designed to characterize how stone crab larvae control their vertical swimming in response to endogenous and exogenous cues (light, pressure and gravity).

One of the greatest challenges for the management of crustacean fisheries is the inability to adequately correlate the success rate of larvae and juveniles recruiting back to the fishery with fine-scale environmental changes that occur within coastal habitats. The research in Dr. Gravinese’s laboratory begins to address this challenge. His research interests include determining the mechanisms that underlie the recruitment and settlement behavior of larval crabs by assessing the role different environmental and chemical cues play during development, habitat selection, and metamorphosis. His lab is also attempting to characterize how combined stressors like elevated temperature and hypoxia (low oxygen) can impact the tolerance and recovery of marine crustaceans. Recently, Dr. Gravinese has been conducting experiments to determine the stone crab’s tolerance during red tide events that usually occur along Florida’s west coast.

Elevated Temperature And Lower Ocean pH May Limit Larval Supply In The Florida Stone Crab

Many coastal watersheds have suffered from decades of urbanization which has diverted stormwater, carrying nutrient pollution, into coastal ocean waters. The influence of land-based runoff will likely accelerate the local rate of ocean acidification — decreasing seawater pH — in […]