Volunteer Monitoring Programs - Join Us

Chesapeake Bay Parasite Project
Mid-Atlantic Chinese Mitten Crab Watch California Kelp Watch
Alaska Green Crab Watch
Alaska Plate Watch

About the Lab 

The Marine Invasions Research Lab is a national and international center for research on biological invasions in coastal marine ecosystems. Biological invasions (the establishment of species beyond their historical range) are a major force of ecological and evolutionary change. Invasions are fundamentally changing the structure and function of ecosystems around the world and are impacting many dimensions of human society. The observed rates and impacts of new invasions have increased dramatically in recent time. ...more

 National database of marine invasions


Feature Story - November 2014

Big Bertha - Adventures in Zooplankton Sampling

Big Bertha is a specially designed plankton sampling pump that allows us to collect plankton from marinas where we can't used more traditional methods. We are using Big Bertha to collect zooplankton from bays with major commercial ports, a known source of introduced marine species, and smaller bays without a direct route for invasion overseas. We hope to document changes in the zooplankton community and detect new invasive species. We hope to estimate where the “hot spots” of invasive species occur and determine if management strategies, such as ballast water treatment, are helping to reduce new invasions. Full Story

New Publications

Ashton, G.V., I.C. Davidson, and G.M. Ruiz.  2014.  Transient small boats as a long-distance coastal vector for dispersal of biofouling organisms.  Estuaries and Coasts, DOI: 10.1007/s12237-014-9782-9.

Miller, A.W. and G.M. Ruiz. 2014. Arctic shipping and marine invaders. Nature Climate Change, 4(6): 413-416.

Ojaveer, H., et.al. 2014. Ten recommendations for advancing the assessment and management of non-indigenous species in marine ecosystems. Marine Policy, 44: 160-165. doi:10.1016/j.marpol.2013.08.019

Ros, M., G.V. Ashton, M.B. Lacerda, J.T. Carlton, M. Vázquez-Luis, J.M. Guerra-García, and G.M. Ruiz. 2014. The Panama Canal and the transoceanic dispersal of marine invertebrates: Evaluation of the introduced amphipod Paracaprella pusilla Mayer, 1890 in the Pacific Ocean. Marine Environmental Research, doi:10.1016/j.marenvres.2014.07.001

Zabin, C.J., G.V. Ashton, C.W. Brown, I.C. Davidson, M.D. Sytsma, and G.M. Ruiz. 2014.Small boats provide connectivity for nonindigenous marine species between a highly invaded international port and nearby coastal harbors. Management of Biological Invasions. 5(2):97-112
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.3391/mbi.2014.5.2.03

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Dr. Gregory M. Ruiz/Senior Scientist
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

647 Contees Wharf Road,
PO Box 28
Edgewater, Maryland 21037

Phone:(443) 482-2227
Email: ruizg@si.edu

Public Outreach: Monaca Noble
Phone: (443) 482-2467, T-TH
Email: noblem@si.edu