Fellowship institution:Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
Project Title:Evaluating the Relative Impacts of the Recreational and Commercial Sectors of the Blue Crab Fishery in Maryland
Advisor:Matt Ogburn, Marjorie Reake
Robert Semmler is a M.S. student in the Marine Estuarine Environmental Science program (MEES) at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is doing his field work with the Fish and Invertebrate Ecology lab at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC) in Edgewater, Maryland. Robert’s work focuses on tagging adult blue crabs (Callinectes sapidus) and using information called in by recreational and commercial fishers who catch these crabs to interpret trends in fishing pressure throughout the Chesapeake Bay. These crabs are of great commercial importance to the region and their fishery has proven difficult to manage. Until estimates of recreational fish catch are better understood, organizations that manage the blue crab population will not be able to make the best decisions to create a proper balance between the fishery’s economic stability and the population’s sustainability. Robert received a bachelor’s degree in biology from the State University of New York at Geneseo, with minors in environmental studies and geological science. In his spare time, Robert enjoys kayaking and performing improvisational comedy shows with friends.
See Robert's posts to Fellowship Experiences, Maryland Sea Grant's blog written by and about graduate fellows and their research.