Dr Erin Reardon
Associate Research Fellow


Fundamentally, I’m interested using physiological approaches to facilitate understanding the interaction between aquatic organisms and the environments in which they live.  Currently, I am working on a NERC-funded project with Dr. Rod Wilson to quantify the relationship between calcium carbonate production and metabolic rate in marine teleost fishes. In addition, I’m working to understand the composition of these carbonates and their fate in the oceans. This work is done in collaboration with a suite of researchers across a variety of disciplines at the following institutions: CEFAS in Lowestoft, Manchester Metropolitan University, NOCs in Southampton, the Met Office, Université de Liège  in Brussels, Belgium, and Jacobs University in Bremen, Germany.

Before the current project, I worked as post doctoral researcher with Professors Rüdiger Krahe and Lauren Chapman at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.  This work focused on using a combination of hypoxia, respirometry, and behavioural trials to quantify the cost of communication in several species of weakly electric S. American Gymnotiform fishes.

Interestingly, studies of African fishes have demonstrated that alternative oxygen environments can drive interdemic variation in fishes, particularly in respiratory traits (e.g., gills) and associated characters (e.g., foraging muscles). Fitness trade-offs maintaining these divergent phenotypes may be reflected in variation in life-history traits across aquatic oxygen gradients. My Ph.D. research integrated theoretical insights from physiological and evolutionary ecology to explore the life-history and energetic consequences of alternative oxygen environments in fishes. Under the supervision of Professor Lauren Chapman, I focused on the interactions among body size, energetics, and oxygen-uptake efficiency in three life-history stages:  (1) embryo, (2) juvenile, and (3) parent in the eurytopic, mouth-brooding, African cichlid, Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor victoriae. This stage-structured approach facilitated an understanding of fundamental life-history trade-offs in response to hypoxic stress.

Broad research specialisms:

  • Physiological, behavioural, and evolutionary ecology
  • Respiration and metabolism
  • Calcium carbonates of marine teleosts
  • The fate of marine teleost carbonates in the environment
  • Hypoxia
  • Tropical freshwater fishes
  • Parental care


PhD McGill University
BSc University of Florida

Contact details

Tel+44 (0) 1392 3745
AddressGeoffrey Pope Building
University of Exeter
Stocker Road

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