PCCRC funded student Greg Merrill successfully defended his master's thesis!

In case you missed his live defense presentation, Greg Merrill recently successfully defended his master’s thesis. This project, with advisor Dr. Jennifer Burns, explored maternal foraging trip durations (MFTD) as an index of foraging conditions for northern fur seals in 3 colonies known to forage in 3 different oceanic domains around the Pribilof Islands.

If you would like to watch the presentation here is a link to the recorded presentation:

Two students funded by the PCCRC successfully defended!

Julie Nielsen and Kaitlyn Manishin recently successfully defended their PhD. dissertation and Master’s thesis respectively. Dr. Nielsen’s project investigated the large-scale movement patterns of demersal fish with electronic tags. Mrs. Manishin’s research evaluated under what scenarios salmon shark predation could influence the dynamics of Chinook salmon in the AYK region of Alaska. Video recordings of both defenses are available.

PCCRC funded student Ben Williams successfully defended his Ph.D. dissertation

On 19 April 2018 Ben Williams successfully defended his Ph.D. dissertation entitled "The reproductive biology and management of walleye pollock (Gadus chalcogrammus) in the Gulf of Alaska". Ben was funded as part of Dr. Gordon Kruse's Walleye pollock maturity study. Dr. Williams works for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in the Commercial Fisheries division.  


One chapter from his dissertation examining the variability in maturity of pollock in the Gulf of Alaska is available here.

PCCRC funded student Tessa Minicucci successfully defended her Master's research

On Wednesday April 18th Tessa Minicucci presented her Master's research entitled 'Determining the effects of Asian pink (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) and chum (O.keta) salmon on western Alaska chum salmon growth' in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the MS in Fisheries. 

Information about her specific project including annual reports and presentations can be found here:

A recording of Ms. Minicucci's presentation is online and available here:


Congratulations to Elizabeth Figus on a successful defense of her Ph.D.!

On Friday 17 November 2017 Elizabeth Figus defended her Ph.D. dissertation:

"Eyes on the Sea: Demonstrating the usefulness of local knowledge to inform commercial fisheries management in Poland and Alaska" Science and decision making in commercial fisheries management take place in the context of uncertainty. This research demonstrates ways that local knowledge held by fishermen can be used to mitigate that uncertainty. This dissertation documents how fishermen in Poland and Alaska perceive management strategies in their fisheries, and compares those perceptions with traditional measures of management performance. Specific case study examples were developed through exploratory interviews with stakeholders in two study regions. Interviews were conducted with Baltic cod (Gadus morhua) fishermen in Poland (n = 31) and Pacific halibut (Hippoglossus stenolepis) fishermen in Alaska (n = 78). Qualitative and quantitative methods were used to analyze stakeholder knowledge about ecosystems, as well as their preferences about regulations. Findings show how the inclusion of stakeholder input in fisheries management need not be limited to ad hoc data collection methods in order to be meaningfully interpretable by managers.

Photo: Molly Fox Zaleski

Photo: Molly Fox Zaleski