Andrew P. Nosal, PhD 2013
Postdoctoral Researcher and Birch Aquarium
DeLaCour Fellow in Ecology and Conservation
Thesis: Demography, Movement Patterns, and Mating System of Leopard Sharks
(Triakis semifasciata) Aggregating along the Open Coast of Southern
Undergraduate Degree: B.S. Biology, Specialization in Environmental and Biological Conservation
Undergraduate University: University of Virginia
I am interested in the spatial ecology of
elasmobranch fishes (sharks and rays), particularly the mechanisms governing
movement phenomena, such as aggregation behavior, sexual segregation, seasonal
migration, navigation, and diel activity patterns. I am also interested in the biological and
ecological consequences (e.g., effects on population structure and mating
systems) and conservation implications of these phenomena (e.g., effectiveness
of existing and future reserves)
Social and non-social forces governing
aggregation behavior in the leopard shark (Triakis
Collaborators: P. Hastings (SIO, UCSD), I. Couzin (Princeton)
Mechanisms enabling navigation and homing in the
leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata).
Collaborators: P. Hastings (SIO, UCSD)
Circadian rhythms and biological clocks in the swell
shark (Cephaloscyllium ventriosum) and horn shark (Heterodontus francisci).
Collaborators: P. Hastings (SIO,UCSD)
Population structure of the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata).
Collaborators: R. Burton and A. Barker (SIO,UCSD), E.
Lewallen (U. Toronto – Scarborough)
Psychology of fear and willingness to conserve
Collaborators: E. Keenan and A. Gneezy (Rady School of
Nosal AP, Royer MA, Caillat A, Kisfaludy E, Wegner
NC (2014). "Aggregation behavior and seasonal philopatry in male and female
leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) along the open coast of southern California,
USA."Marine Ecology Progress Series. In Press.
Nosal AP, Lewallen EA, Burton RS (2013). "Multiple paternity in leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) litters sampled from a
predominantly female aggregation in La Jolla, CA, USA. " Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and
Nosal AP, Cartamil DC, Long JW, Luhrmann M,
Wegner NC, Graham JB (2013). Demography and movement patterns of leopard
sharks (Triakis semifasciata)
aggregating near the head of a submarine canyon along the open coast of
southern California, USA." Environmental Biology of Fishes. 96:865-878
Nosal AP, Keenan EA, Gneezy A. 2013. " Happy and playful sharks? The effect of background music in nature documentaries on viewer's perception of and willingness to protect sharks." Oral presentation at the 31st Annual Meeting of the American Elasmobranch Society, Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, Albuquerque, MN, USA
Nosal AP, et al. (2012). Low
incidence of multiple paternity in leopard sharks (Triakis semifasciata) sampled from a predominantly female aggregation. Oral paper presented at the 30th Annual Meeting of the
American Elasmobranch Society, World
Congress of Herpetology, Vancouver,
Nosal AP (2012). Local
legends: the leopard sharks of La Jolla Shores.
Invited oral presentation
at the Jeffrey B. Graham Perspectives on
Ocean Sciences Lecture Series, Birch Aquarium, La Jolla, CA, USA.
Nosal AP, et al. (2011).
Aggregation behavior of the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) at thehead of
La Jolla Submarine Canyon, La Jolla, California, USA. Oral paper presented at the 29th Annual Meeting of the
American Elasmobranch Society, Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and
Herpetologists, Minneapolis, MN, USA. *Samuel H. Gruber Award for Best Student Oral
Nosal AP, et al. (2011). Aggregation
behavior of the leopard shark (Triakissemifasciata) associated with the head of La Jolla Submarine
Canyon, La Jolla, California, USA. Oral
paper presented at the First
International Conference on Fish Telemetry, Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan.*Award
for Best Student Oral Paper
Nosal AP, et al. (2010). Movement patterns of the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) along the open
coast of San Diego County, California.
Oral paper presented at the 28th
Annual Meeting of the Elasmobranch Society, Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and
Herpetologists, Providence, RI, USA.
Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) – 2007
Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) – 2007
Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP) – 2007
Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) – 2006
on-camera interviews on shark behavior, conservation, and human interactions
with the Associated Press, Los Angeles Times, San Diego Union-Tribune, North
County Times, Mail Online, La Jolla Light, Christian Science Monitor, all San
Diego network news affiliates (FOX-5, CW-6, NBC-7, CBS-8, ABC-10, and KUSI), and
Al Jazeera International
appearances on the television series “Lifeguard! Southern California” (The Weather
Channel; 2012) and the documentary “Shocking Sharks” (National Geographic
Channel and Nat Geo Wild; 2013)
Please direct media inquiries to Mario
Aguilera of the Scripps Communications Office (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Jessica
Crawford of the Birch Aquarium (email@example.com)
In the News:
Pooling Support for the Next Generation
Andy is talking to a group of middle school science students about his
leopard shark dissertation research. He's addressing them from atop a
small homely-looking boat docked on the Scripps pier.