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Research in the Heithaus lab is focused on understanding the ecological importance of large predators, especially in the ocean, and the consequences of human-induced declines in their populations. Dr. Mike Heithaus and his team are working to conduct research on hard-to-study marine animals from whales and dolphins to sharks and sea turtles in their natural habitats.


Much of the work in the Heithaus lab is field-based and includes developing and employing new technologies to ask/answer important questions. This includes developing animal-borne cameras, satellite and acoustic telemetry, and – more recently – camera-equipped unmanned aerial vehicles. Reaserchers are investigating the ecology and ecological roles of these species in various ecosystems to understand and conserve them.