Staff

Dr. Samuel H Gruber 'Doc'

Dr. Samuel H Gruber 'Doc'

Founder

Dr. Gruber is a recognized authority of shark behavior -both as to field studies and in regard to visually guided behavior, and physiology. He is a longtime member of numerous professional societies and founded the American Elasmobranch Society in 1983. He founded the World Conservation Union's (IUCN) Shark Specialist Group and was its Chairperson between 1991 and 1996.

If you'd like to read more in-depth on Doc's biography, please on the following link: http://www.biminisharklab.com/about/drgruber.

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Dr. Tristan Guttridge

Dr. Tristan Guttridge

Lab Director and Senior Scientist

At Lab Since: January 2006 to November 2008, January 2012 as Research Associate. 2014 as Senior Scientist.
From: Stamford, United Kingdom
Educational/Work Background:
2012-2014 Research Associate. Cardiff University, UK
2011 Post doctoral research fellow. Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
2006-2009 Ph.D. Behavioural Ecology. Leeds University, UK
2001-2004 B.Sc. Zoology, Leeds University, UK

Research Interests:
Functions and mechanisms of group formation in sharks.
The role of learning in shark behavior.

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Rachael Cashman

Rachael Cashman

Lab Manager

At the Lab Since: September 2013
From: Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, USA
Education/Work Background:
Summer 2008 - Sharks and Their Relatives course at Shoals Marine Laboratory
Summer 2008 - Marine Ichthyology at Wallops Island Marine Science Consortium
Summer 2009 - REU at the Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience
building a species inventory for the Matanzas River Basin
Spring 2010 - B.S. in Marine Biology from Millersville University of Pennsylvania
Fall 2010 - Volunteer at Aliwal Shoal and Mossel Bay, South Africa
through Oceans Research
2011-2013 - Observer for NMFS for the West Coast and North Pacific
Groundfish Fisheries
Winter 2012 - Fisheries Science through the University of Alaska Fairbanks
Winter 2013 - Volunteer at Bimini Biological Field Station
Research Interests: Database Management & Biological Samples Organization

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Christopher Bolte

Christopher Bolte

Assistant Manager

From: Corvallis, Oregon, USA
At Lab Since: October, 2014

Education: B.S. in Biology, Minor in Chemistry - University of Oregon

I am interested in discovering as much as we can about the elasmobranchs around Bimini and ultimately using this information for conservation purposes.

Research Interests: Spatial Ecology, Large Scale Movement, Photogrammetry, Photo Identification



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Félicie Dhellemmes

Félicie Dhellemmes

Principal Investigator

At Lab Since: January 2015

From: Lille, France

Educational/Work Background:

PhD Student, Humboldt University, Germany

Master’s degree in General Biology, Animal Behaviour and Marine Sciences, (Institut Supérieur d’Agriculture de Lille, France & Universidad Autonoma de Baja California, Mexico)

2011: Study of the Whale Shark (Rhincodon typus) population based in the Los Angeles Bay (Baja California, Mexico)

2012: Study of the crossed contamination with Vibrio harveyi in an abalone (Haliotis tuberculata) farm (SCEA France Haliotis, France)

2013: Exploring personality and a simple learning process in the juvenile lemon shark, Negaprion brevirostris (Bimini Biological Field Station, Bahamas). Investigating the effect of habituation on the expression of the “exploration” personality trait in a semi-captive environment.

2015: Principle investigator at the Lab, “Ecological consequences of behaviour types in sharks”. This study investigates juvenile lemon sharks’ behaviour types (personality types) in semi-captivity and in the wild. The goal is to better understand the role of personality in sharks’ ecology and life history traits and therefore correlate captive behaviours with natural behaviours.

Research Interests: Animal behaviour, animal cognition, personality, social networks

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Maurits van Zinnicq Bergmann

Maurits van Zinnicq Bergmann

Principal Investigator

At lab since: June 2015
From: Vught, the Netherlands

Educational background/Work experience:
2015 - Principal Investigator, Bimini Biological Field Station Foundation; title: Movement networks and habitat preferences of a multi-species elasmobranch assemblage in Bimini, Bahamas
2011-2013 Master of Science in Marine Biology, University of Groningen, the Netherlands
Masters Research Projects:

University of Groningen, in cooperation with the Bimini Biological Field Station foundation; title: Testing the acoustic detection range of submersible ultrasonic receivers in relation to environmental factors at two shallow-water environments in Bimini, Bahamas
University of Groningen; Elucidating the relationship between the spatio-temporal distribution of close relatives and dispersal rate
University of Groningen; Is a sexy life also a shorter life? Manipulation of reproductive effort using nest manipulation and female stimulation in the three-spined stickleback, Gasterosteus aculeatus


Research interests: movement and behavioural ecology of free-roaming organisms, movement and co-occurence networks, drivers of movement

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Matthew Smukall

Matthew Smukall

Principal Investigator

From - Orlando, Florida / Kenai, Alaska

Education/Work Experience - PhD student, University of Alaska Fairbanks, School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences

BSc University of Florida, Wildlife Ecology and Conservation
Masters University of Florida, Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences

2009 - Florida Keys, caribbean spiny lobster research project, University of Florida
2009 to 2015 - Fisheries Technician/ Biologist, Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association, Kenai Alaska. Studying salmon populations in Southcentral Alaska, movement patterns of invasive northern pike, and the impact of pike on native salmonids.

First came to the lab in January 2012 and volunteered over 3 winters during leave from work

Research Interests - Movement patterns of sharks. In particular the residency time, dispersal patterns, and philopatry of tiger sharks around Bimini. I am also interested in the use of longlines to assess shark populations and how sharks are interacting with the longlines.

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Sasha

Sasha

Sasha has been with us since late 2014. A Pitbull at heart, she has a lot of love and licks to give around. Sturdy and surprisingly speedy in the sand, Sasha is proving a well-suited play buddy to rough-house outdoors with her canine compatriots at the lab.

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Marie Gruber

Marie Gruber

Lab Mother from Miami

I'm a former fashion designer married to "Doc". Doc says they tie boats to him, so I guess I'm a boat! I help run the Shark Lab by cooking for special events and classes or whenever I go to the Shark Lab. I help organize all the volunteers and keep the files back in the Miami office. I came to Florida back in the '60s from Los Angeles, California on a designing job and met the "Doc". The passion he has for sharks kind of rubbed off on me (not to swim with them or kiss them) but to help him with his work and studies. We raised our own "Mini-Shark Docs", 2 daughters. They both love Bimini and the Shark Lab. They were both instrumental in building and training the early staff. Although they return frequently, they are off on their own careers.

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Nathan Grimes

Nathan Grimes

Executive Operations Associate

At Lab Since: December 2014

From: Fort Wayne, Indiana

Educational Background: 2011-2014 BS Marine Science and BA Economics from Coastal Carolina University

Research Interests: Ecological Economics, Shark Conservation, Ecotourism, Ecosystem Valuation techniques, and Network Theory analysis

Goals at the lab: Enhance operational logistics to improve delivery of equipment and supplies to the lab while reducing costs. When time allows, I also plan to provide data analysis to further our understanding of interspecies and intraspecies interactions in sharks populations.

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Jack Massuger

Jack Massuger

Lab Manager

At Lab Since: Summer, 2013
From: Melbourne, Australia
Educational/Work Background: bSC Marine Zoology from Melbourne University
Research Interests: My primary interests lay in animal behaviour and human interactions, although I have a passion for almost any aspects of hands on field work

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Emily White

Emily White

Assistant Manager


At Lab Since: September, 2014

From: Prince Edward Island, Canada

Education: B.Sc student in Marine Biology from Dalhousie University

Lab and field tech for the Aquatic Invasive Species sector of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Field tech for Southeast Environmental Association

Research Interests: Spatial ecology, telemetry, animal behaviour, database management and elasmobranch conservation.

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Charlotte Sams

Charlotte Sams

Media Manager

At Lab Since: March 2015

From: Cornwall/Hampshire, England, UK.

Educational/Work Background: Ba (hons) Marine & Natural History Photography from Falmouth University
Freelance photographer & SSI Dive Con Specialist

Research Interests/At the lab: My strengths are in photography and media so that is my main role at the lab. Marine conservation by promoting wildlife through imagery is my passion, and that's what I hope to contribute to at the lab. I'm not a researcher but I enjoy helping out with all the field work, and have an interest in animal behaviour too. You can reach me at media@biminisharklab.com for any enquiries or questions!

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Anthony Gillis

Anthony Gillis

Outreach Co-ordinator

At Lab Since: March 2015

From: Brownsville, Texas

Educational Background: 2006-2010 B.Sc. in Wildlife an Fisheries Science From Texas A&M

Research Interest: Spatial ecology, Habitat and resource partitioning, Large and fine scale movement and tracking

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Shadow

Shadow

Bimini Pot Cake

Shadow was our neighbor's Pit Bull. Despite their reputation, Shadow is one of the nicest dogs around. It was a usual pattern for Shadow to break off his lead and pay us a visit, only to be taken back and tied up again. After a continual pattern of this we suddenly stopped taking him back. Shadow lived under our house for over a month until we officially decided to claim him for our own. Shadow now enjoys the life of luxury going from an outside dog to a member of our family. He gets plenty of attention from our staff and volunteers and he loves every minute of it!

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Cira

Cira

Latest pup

Cira is the newest and youngest to the lab. Adopted by Chris from the stray dogs of Bimini, Cira (formerly known as sugar), made a connection with Chris during our assitance with the vet clinic on the island, and shortly after became a member of the Sharklab family. She is a lively and loving dog, we're looking forward to watching her grow.

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