Principal Investigator

Dr. Hannah Vander Zanden, Assistant Professor (

Department of Biology and
Archie Carr Center for Sea Turtle Research

Office: 420 Carr Hall

Phone: 352-294-0438



Current members

wallaceDr. Amy Wallace, Postdoctoral associate (

Amy is using radio and stable isotopes to study the ecology and age of loggerhead sea turtles. She came to Gainesville from the University of South Florida, College of Marine Science, where she completed both her M.S. and Ph.D. Amy began her research career studying stony coral assemblages in the Florida reef tract. She eventually transitioned to using bulk and compound specific stable isotope analyses on eye-lens proteins to reconstruct geographic and trophic histories of individual fish. If you cannot find her in the lab, Amy is probably out on the water fishing or exploring nature.


Arends_CarsonCarson Arends, MS student (

Carson‘s current master’s research centers on the diet overlap and niche partitioning between green, Kemp’s, and loggerhead sea turtles particularly in St. Joseph Bay, Florida. She received her undergraduate degree in Wildlife Ecology and Management from Auburn University in 2018. She currently works and conducts research under the U.S. Geological Survey partnered with the University of Florida and is using stable isotope analysis to determine the makeup of each sea turtle species diet.


Campbell_CaitlinCatlin Campbell, PhD candidate (

Caitlin’s research centers on developing tools to address conservation challenges, with a special interest in animal migration and spatial ecology. She received a degree in environmental science from the University of Vermont, and has conducted research in the southeastern U.S., Namibia, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Japan. She completed her M.S. at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science Appalachian Laboratory, where she applied stable hydrogen isotope analysis to reveal the migratory patterns of three at-risk species of bat across North America.


Christopher Nolte, PhD student (

Chris’ current research is examining why there are differences in conservation success between loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles in South Africa. This research will aim to use stable isotopes, satellite tracking, and genetic analysis to determine if these sea turtles can be classified as refugee species. He received his undergraduate and M.S. degrees from Nelson Mandela University. His master’s focused on investigating habitat use of loggerheads using stable isotopes and epibionts and relating this to the turtle’s body condition.


Alex Fireman, Lab manager (

Alex is assisting with a number of projects in the Vander Zanden lab. She received her B.A. from Wesleyan University in Biology and Earth & Environmental Science. She recently received her M.S. from the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science where she assessed the trophic ecology of the Caribbean hawksbill sea turtle using stable isotope analysis. She has participated in field research in Connecticut and Maryland waterways, studied amphibian populations in Ecuador, and has worked with hawksbill sea turtles in Antigua, West Indies for four years.




Saahir Mukherjee, Undergraduate researcher (Summer 2018 — present)





Lab Alumni



Diana Rodas (Summer 2017 — Spring 2019)






Marisa Pico (Fall 2017 — Spring 2018)