Visiting Scientists

Ancillary to our day to day scientific projects we are also keen to explore collaborative opportunities with other researchers on terrestrial as well as marine organisms. These can be short term day visits to collect samples or month long stays to complete research experiments.


For Professors and post doctoral scientists we charge $125 per night including food and accommodation and further fees for equipment and organism collection. For PhD candidates wishing to conduct part of their research at the station rather than full time please email Matt Smukall directly to discuss options:

Doctoral & Post-Doctoral

Since 1990 the BBFS has hosted and supported PhD students from around the globe in projects investigating various aspects of elasmobranch biology. Our main research focus is the lemon shark and we have accumulated a large amount of information about this species including diet, behaviour, prey and predator community dynamics, life history, mating system and genetics (see scientific output). The lemon shark is now recognized as a ‘model’ for requiem sharks and serves as an important tool for advancing our knowledge of general shark biology. The longevity of our research in Bimini, coupled with the experience of our crew and dedicated volunteers, provides a unique and exciting platform from which to develop novel scientific questions.

When Can I Apply?

At BBFS we usually take on two PhD students every three years, however we are open to discussing options particularly if students have funding or a University position secured. We urge applicants to begin communicating with Matthew Smukall as soon as possible. It is not easy securing funding or a University position and we like to know who will be starting their PhD ~6 months in advance. Please be sure to have read around the subject before contacting and see current and past research for ideas. 

Applications for 2021/2022 PhD positions at the Shark Lab are open. We understand that COVID-19 has made travel more restricted, so start/end times for the candidacy are not set in stone. Please email and to begin the PhD candidate discussions. 

Completing doctoral research in Bimini is hard work and demanding both physically and academically. We therefore expect all prospective PhD students to have previously volunteered at the station for at ~4 months. This is beneficial for both us and you as we are able to assess your capabilities in the field; discuss your project ideas; ensure you are trained in research techniques and have an understanding of the Bimini ecosystem. If accepted doctoral students are expected to spend 3 years at the station to ensure sufficient data can be collected for their research. They are responsible for the daily activities of the volunteers, supervising project students and contributing to the daily functioning of the station. In return they receive a PhD Sharklab scholarship which includes accommodation and food, equipment and logistics support as well as project supervision from Matthew Smukall.

Note BBFS does not confer degrees all applicants are required to have secured a position at a University as well as an academic advisor. 

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