Ph.D. student, Katrina Sky Munsterman, on a recent field trip to work with local fishing communities in Abaco, The Bahamas

Katrina Munsterman, PhD student at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, recently became the recipient of a joint Sea Grant-NOAA Fisheries fellowship to pursue her work in ecosystem dynamics. Katrina applied via Michigan Sea Grant to receive this annual national award, the 2022 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)-Sea Grant Joint Fellowship

Katrina became involved in ecological research in her first year as an undergraduate at the University of California Santa Barbara; she is now pursuing her Ph.D. at U-M and is working to understand how fish and fisher behavior affects production in coastal ecosystems.

NMFS has established her area of focus, essential fish habitat, as a priority research topic to rehabilitate fish stocks and maintain productive fisheries in the United States. Quality habitat is critical for fish recruitment and to reduce mortality from predators. Katrina’s research also highlights the role of fish in modifying their habitats by supplying nutrients from their waste, which alters primary production and can potentially increase fish populations.

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