Dawn Barlow

PhD Candidate, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife

Profile Field Tabs

M.S. Wildlife Science, Oregon State University, 2018
B.S. Organismal Biology, Pitzer College, 2016
B.A. Environmental Policy, Pitzer College, 2016
Research/Career Interests: 

I am interested in the ecology and conservation of marine mammals, specifically how anthropogenic activity impacts marine mammals and the ecosystems they are part of. My masters research investigated the distribution, residency patterns, population connectivity, and abundance of blue whales in New Zealand. Working together with a team of scientists, we were able to document a unique population of ~700 blue whales (Balaenoptera musculus) which are genetically distinct and present in the South Taranaki Bight (STB) region year-round. In addition to being an important foraging ground for blue whales, the STB region is heavily used by industry, with active oil and gas extraction, seismic surveying, shipping traffic, and proposed seafloor mining. My PhD research will aim to understand the ecological drivers of blue whale distribution patterns in the STB region on multiple scales, incorporating oceanography, prey, acoustic data, and satellite imagery. Through investigating the spatial and temporal presence of blue whales in this industrial area and enhancing our understanding of their foraging ecology, we hope to provide the necessary information for implementing effective conservation and management efforts for these whales and the STB ecosystem.

I am a Graduate Fellow under the advisement of Dr. Leigh Torres in the Geospatial Ecology of Marine Megafauna Laboratory.
Professional Preparation: 
Instructor: FW 251 Principles of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Oregon State University, 2018
Instructor: FW 303 Survey of Geographic Information Systems in Natural Resources, Oregon State University, 2017-2018
Teaching Assistant: BIOL 169 Marine Ecology, Keck Science Department of Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, and Scripps Colleges, Claremont, California. 2015–2016.
Research Assistant: Humpback Whale Acoustics Project, Alaska Whale Foundation, Frederick Sound, Alaska. 2015.
Research Assistant: Marine Ecology Lab, Keck Science Department of Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, and Scripps Colleges, Claremont California. 2013–2015.
Research Assistant: Ecology and Social Structure of the Southern Australian Bottlenose Dolphin in Adelaide’s Metropolitan Waters, Cetacean Ecology, Behaviour, and Evolution Laboratory, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia. 2014.
Intern: Steven Morgan Lab, University of California Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory. 2013.
Intern: MPAtlas Project, Marine Conservation Institute. 2012.
Intern: Applied California Current Ecosystem Studies (ACCESS) project, PRBO Conservation Science, Petaluma, California. 2011–2012.
Affiliated with: 
Geospatial Ecology of Marine Megafauna Laboratory (GEMM Lab)
Hatfield Marine Science Center