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Alaska SeaLife Center 

ASLC names new science director


Alaska SeaLife Center

The Alaska SeaLife Center has appointed Dr. Markus Horning as science director effective July 13.

Dr. Horning is an associate professor at Oregon State University’s Marine Mammal Institute. He has conducted research at the Alaska SeaLife Center since its opening, most recently collaborating with Dr. Jo-Ann Mellish on a long-term study into the life history of Steller sea lions that theorized on the impact of predation by sleeper sharks. While serving as ASLC’s science director, Horning intends to continue his active research on conservation and management of marine species.

“Dr. Markus Horning has a solid track record as a very creative and productive marine scientist, and is praised by colleagues and funders as a collaborative leader who understands the importance of the application of marine mammal research to resource management in Alaska’s oceans. I am ecstatic that he will help guide our research programs to be at the forefront of the field, as well as to be highly relevant to stakeholders,” said Dr. Tara Riemer, ASLC President and CEO.

Dr. Horning holds a Ph.D. in zoology from the University of Bielefeld and Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Physiology at Seewiesen, Germany. Following postdoctoral research at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography he was a scientist at Texas A&M University for 10 years. His research focuses on integrative, ecosystem-based investigations of the life history, physiological ecology, trophic and population ecology of upper trophic marine vertebrates, and their predators and prey.

He has authored nearly 50 peer-reviewed publications and his research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, North Pacific Research Board, Pollock Conservation Cooperative Research Center, North Pacific Fisheries Foundation, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.

He will succeed Dr. Tuula Hollmén who has chosen to return to a full time research position at the center following five years as science director.


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