Sturgeons in (actually from) Space!

We are currently en route with a research team to Southern Illinois University to test our new satellite “pop-off” tags for our upcoming Lake Sturgeon project. These “sat-tags” are attached to fish and eventually “pop off” at a set time (weeks, months, year) and upload their data to a satellite.) We will meet with fellow researchers to test attachment methods and ultrasound techniques on aquacultured Shovelnose (and possibly Pallid) Sturgeon (serving as proxy for Lake Sturgeon).

We will then apply these techniques to our upcoming fieldwork with US Fish & Wildlife partners this spring/early summer, when we will be tracking Lake Sturgeon in the Niagara River between Lakes Erie & Ontario to investigate what these fish do during the non-spawning season. Stay tuned, and thanks in advance to SIU colleagues for hosting us!–


Your Inner Fish – New PBS Series

Primitive fishes, the development of life on Earth, the city of Chicago, and MUCH more…very excited to share the promo video for the upcoming PBS series “Your Inner Fish”, which is based on the best-selling book by fish paleontologist Dr. Neil Shubin (University of Chicago).

Feel free to check out the website below for more info on the series, and the promo video is well worth the watch!


Freshwater Biodiversity & New IUCN Atlas

I had the opportunity to write a guest blog for the Huffington Post on the importance of freshwater biodiversity in connection with the new IUCN online freshwater biodiversity atlas. See link below; extended post coming soon!

Guest Blog for Huffington Post


-UPDATES (brief, but long overdue)!!!–

-Hi All,

Many apologies for the lack of updates over the past many months, the transition from University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) to my postdoc at Shedd Aquarium (Chicago)/University of Wisconsin (Madison) kept me quite busy to say the least!  I will try to update more consistently, but for now, please see the following image/link to an overview of some of our Great Lakes migratory fishes work at Shedd Aquarium/U-Wisconsin Madison which will be featured in blog updates for National Geographic!  More field pics to come from my current field work here in Green Bay, WI (tracking migratory northern pike Esox lucius)!–



-SNRE Biostation Orientation featured on the U-M homepage!–

-The School of Natural Resources & Environment new student orientation at the U-M Biological Station (Pellston, MI) is currently featured on the U-M homepage!  Main photo shows me with several new students during the electrofishing activities on the Sturgeon River near UMBS.  I’ve helped out/led the electrofishing activities for 5 years (this year was my final year), and we have always caught some big fishes!  Photos by SNRE’s fantastic Media/Web Administrator Dave Brenner.–

-Migrating to the Windy City!–

-It’s official!  I have accepted a postdoctoral research position at the D.P. Haerther Center for Conservation and Research at Shedd Aquarium in Chicago!  This is also a joint position with University of Wisconsin – Madison (I’ll be primarily based out of Chicago).  My research supervisors will be Dr. Chuck Knapp (Shedd Aquarium) and Dr. Pete McIntyre (University of Wisconsin).  The research will focus primarily on Great Lakes migratory fishes, although we will be developing other aquatic conservation ecology projects as well.  I’ll be going through a transitional period between Ann Arbor and Chicago this fall, which will allow me to wrap up my current research/work at the University of Michigan while also learning the ropes at Shedd/U-Wisconsin.  I have several other updates to post, and will try to keep up as the current research concludes and the new projects start up!–

-Heading to the 4th International Gar Conference Today!–

Departing later today for the 4th International Meeting on Lepisosteid Research which will be held in Villahermosa, Tabasco state, Mexico.  Looking forward to catching up with colleagues I haven’t seen since the last gar meetings (which were in Thibodaux, Louisiana, in 2010; Heredia, Costa Rica, in 2008) and finding out about new research!  I’ll also be presenting a summary of the results of my dissertation work, including countergradient variation and genetic diversity among spotted gar populations.  I’ll be sure and update with photos as much as I can over the course of the week!–

-First Complete Molecular Phylogeny of Gars Published!–

We recently published the first complete molecular phylogeny of living gars (Lepisosteidae; June 2012 issue of Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution). Abstract and table/figure summaries are available HERE. Researchers and others interested in the full article please contact me at Many thanks to all involved with completing this analysis!


This site provides information on my current and past research in aquatic conservation ecology, sustainable aquaculture, and natural history, primarily focusing on fishes.  I’ll be updating various sections of this site over the next few months, so please feel free to keep checking back.  Thank you for visiting!–

Solomon R. David, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
School of Natural Resources & Environment
University of Michigan

Solomon R David CV 2012