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Welcome to the lab website of Dave Carlon, PhD. I am interested in the key ecological and evolutionary processes that control the structure, function, and diversity of marine systems. My training includes a PhD from the University of New Hampshire in marine ecology, and postdocs at U. C. Davis and the University of Southern California. At Davis and USC I developed my skills in the application of molecular tools to ecological and evolutionary questions. After ten years at the University of Hawaii, and tenure in 2008, I came to Maine and Bowdoin College in the Summer of 2013 to serve as the director of the Coastal Studies Center. At Bowdoin, I also hold an appointment as an associate professor in the Department of Biology.

While I teach and conduct research (see Current Research for more details), my primary role at Bowdoin is to grow the scientific programs and infrastructure of the Coastal Studies Center (CSC). Located on Orr’s Island in the town of Harpswell, the CSC is a 25 minute drive from Bowdoin’s main campus in Brunswick, and one hour drive from the Portland Airport. The CSC site includes 118 acres of coastal spruce-pine forest surrounded by 8 km of coastline. Access to the rocky intertidal, mud flats, and benthic habitats typical of the Gulf of Maine is excellent. We now operate a fleet of small boats for research purposes, and I spear-headed a recent renovation of our flowing seawater marine laboratory that improved water quality and increased tank space. Now, with a grant from the NSF’s FSML Program, we are building an experimental seawater laboratory that will allow users to precisely manipulate climate change variables in flowing seawater. A complimentary pier mounted sensor array, will provide measurements of pCO2, pH, etc. for realistic experimental designs that represent current and predicted coastal marine environments.

My recent teaching efforts have focused on a the development of the Bowdoin Marine Science Semester. This immersion semester is field and laboratory intensive, and gives Bowdoin students and students from schools in the 12-College Exchange Program, a chance to experience marine science in action through inquiry based learning and independent research.