People

Dr Anna Sturrock

Senior Lecturer
School of Life Sciences
Dr Anna Sturrock

Profile

Biography

I am an aquatic ecologist with a particular interest in fish ecology, conservation and management. I primarily use natural chemical tracers in fish tissues to reconstruct the migration patterns, phenology, physiology and trophic ecology of vulnerable and commercial species. The resulting datasets provide unique insights into the behaviours and habitat needs of fish in natural settings, allowing us to better predict how climate change and other stressors will affect their evolution and resilience. By revealing the critical habitats supporting fisheries and identifying the factors influencing trait success we can design more targeted management measures to protect critical ecosystem services during this period of unprecedented global change.

Qualifications

  • PhD University of Southampton, (2012)

  • MSc University of Otago, (2008)

  • BSc Hons University of Edinburgh, (2004)

Appointments

University of Essex

  • Lecturer, School of Life Sciences, University of Essex (1/7/2020 - present)

Other academic

  • Researcher, Center for Watershed Sciences, University of California, Davis (1/10/2016 - 30/6/2020)

  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Environmental Science, Policy and Management, University of California, Berkeley (1/7/2014 - 30/9/2016)

  • Postdoctoral Researcher & NOAA affiliate, Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz (21/5/2012 - 30/6/2014)

Research and professional activities

Research interests

Isotope ecology and biomineral chemistry

Key words: otolith
Open to supervise

Habitat, flow and fisheries management in a changing climate

Open to supervise

Fish ecology and management

My passion lies in fish ecology, conservation and management, and using natural chemical tracers in fish tissues to reconstruct the migration patterns, phenology, physiology and trophic ecology of vulnerable and commercial species. The resulting datasets provide unique insights into the behaviours and habitat needs of fish in natural settings, allowing us to better predict how climate change and other stressors will affect their evolution, productivity and resilience. My main research projects focus on (1) the effect of different stressors and management actions on the resilience of salmonids, (2) developing new methods to understand the spatial structure and connectivity patterns of marine fishes, (3) combining genetic and otolith tools to explore the relationship between genotype and phenotype, and (4) exploring the influence of environmental and anthropogenic drivers on fish growth and health.

Key words: fisheries
Open to supervise

Current research

From Ions to Ecosystems: A Novel Framework for the Biomonitoring and Management of Vulnerable and Commercial Fishes

The overarching project aims are to develop novel methods to reconstruct fish health, growth, diet, pollution exposure and movement patterns, with a particular focus on chemical tracers in fish tissues and archival structures such as otoliths (earstones), eye lenses and scales. These structures grow incrementally from birth to death, producing growth bands (biochronologies, like tree rings) that can be used to reconstruct age and growth rate. By analyzing the chemical composition of these tissues it is also possible to reconstruct physiological and environmental histories. Ultimately, these tools will help us understand fish habitat needs so we can protect or restore their critical habitats and support fisheries during this period of global change.

Conferences and presentations

From ghost stories to success stories : the use of otolith chemistry in conservation and management

Invited presentation, Keynote presentation, 7th International Otolith Symposium, Chile, 12/10/2023

Publications

Journal articles (25)

Huber, ER., Ryan, RE., Johnson, RC., Sturrock, AM., Lusardi, RA. and Carlson, SM., Seventy years of diminishing biocomplexity of California Central Valley hatchery steelhead, Oncorhynchus mykiss. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences

Harrison, LOJ., Engelhard, GH., Thurstan, RH. and Sturrock, AM., (2023). Widening mismatch between UK seafood production and consumer demand: a 120-year perspective.. Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries. 33 (4), 1387-1408

Reis-Santos, P., Gillanders, BM., Sturrock, AM., Izzo, C., Oxman, DS., Lueders-Dumont, JA., Hüssy, K., Tanner, SE., Rogers, T., Doubleday, ZA., Andrews, AH., Trueman, C., Brophy, D., Thiem, JD., Baumgartner, LJ., Willmes, M., Chung, M-T., Charapata, P., Johnson, RC., Trumble, S., Heimbrand, Y., Limburg, KE. and Walther, BD., (2023). Reading the biomineralized book of life: expanding otolith biogeochemical research and applications for fisheries and ecosystem-based management. Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries. 33 (2), 411-449

Morissette, O., Trueman, CN., Sturrock, AM., Geffen, AJ. and Shirai, K., (2023). Limited evidence for species‐specific sensitivity of temperature‐dependent fractionation of oxygen stable isotope in biominerals: A meta‐analysis. Methods in Ecology and Evolution. 14 (7), 1719-1731

Darnaude, A., Arnaud-Haond, S., Hunter, E., Gaggiotti, O., Sturrock, A., Beger, M., Volckaert, F., Pérez-Ruzafa, A., López-López, L., Tanner, SE., Turan, C., Ahmet Doğdu, S., Katsanevakis, S. and Costantini, F., (2022). Unifying approaches to Functional Marine Connectivity for improved marine resource management: the European SEA-UNICORN COST Action. Research Ideas and Outcomes. 8

Coleman, L., Johnson, R., Cordoleani, F., Phillis, C. and Sturrock, A., (2022). Variation in Juvenile Salmon Growth Opportunities Across a Shifting Habitat Mosaic. San Francisco Estuary and Watershed Science. 20 (1)

Darnaude, A., Arnaud-Haond, S., Hunter, E., Gaggiotti, O., Sturrock, A., Beger, M., Volckaert, F., Pérez-Ruzafa, A., López-López, L., Tanner, SE., Turan, C., Ahmet Doğdu, S., Katsanevakis, S. and Costantini, F., (2022). Unifying approaches to Functional Marine Connectivity for improved marine resource management: the European SEA-UNICORN COST Action. Research Ideas and Outcomes. 8

Sturrock, AM., Ogaz, M., Neal, K., Corline, NJ., Peek, R., Myers, D., Schluep, S., Levinson, M., Johnson, RC. and Jeffres, CA., (2022). Floodplain trophic subsidies in a modified river network: managed foodscapes of the future?. Landscape Ecology. 37 (12), 2991-3009

Darnaude, AM., Seker, YT., Costantini, F., Tanner, S., Sturrock, A., López-López, L., Manuel, H., Beger, M., Türkmen, A., Peck, M., Volkaert, F. and Hunter, E., (2022). The SEA-UNICORN European COST Action: Advancing Knowledge on Marine Connectivity to Support Transition to a Sustainable Blue Economy. Marine Technology Society Journal. 56 (3), 134-135

Keeley, ATH., Fremier, AK., Goertler, PAL., Huber, PR., Sturrock, AM., Bashevkin, SM., Barbaree, BA., Grenier, JL., Dilts, TE., Gogol-Prokurat, M., Colombano, DD., Bush, EE., Laws, A., Gallo, JA., Kondolf, M. and Stahl, AT., (2022). Governing Ecological Connectivity in Cross-Scale Dependent Systems.. Bioscience. 72 (4), 372-386

Hüssy, K., Limburg, KE., de Pontual, H., Thomas, ORB., Cook, PK., Heimbrand, Y., Blass, M. and Sturrock, AM., (2021). Trace Element Patterns in Otoliths: The Role of Biomineralization. Reviews in Fisheries Science & Aquaculture. 29 (4), 1-33

Cordoleani, F., Phillis, CC., Sturrock, AM., FitzGerald, AM., Malkassian, A., Whitman, GE., Weber, PK. and Johnson, RC., (2021). Threatened salmon rely on a rare life history strategy in a warming landscape. Nature Climate Change. 11 (11), 982-988

Sturrock, AM., Carlson, SM., Wikert, JD., Heyne, T., Nusslé, S., Merz, JE., Sturrock, HJW. and Johnson, RC., (2020). Unnatural selection of salmon life histories in a modified riverscape. Global Change Biology. 26 (3), 1235-1247

Sturrock, AM., Satterthwaite, WH., Cervantes‐Yoshida, KM., Huber, ER., Sturrock, HJW., Nusslé, S. and Carlson, SM., (2019). Eight Decades of Hatchery Salmon Releases in the California Central Valley: Factors Influencing Straying and Resilience. Fisheries. 44 (9), 433-444

Phillis, CC., Sturrock, AM., Johnson, RC. and Weber, PK., (2018). Endangered winter-run Chinook salmon rely on diverse rearing habitats in a highly altered landscape. Biological Conservation. 217, 358-362

Willmes, M., Hobbs, JA., Sturrock, AM., Bess, Z., Lewis, LS., Glessner, JJG., Johnson, RC., Kurth, R. and Kindopp, J., (2018). Fishery collapse, recovery, and the cryptic decline of wild salmon on a major California river. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences. 75 (11), 1836-1848

Morais, P., Dias, E., Cerveira, I., Carlson, SM., Johnson, RC. and Sturrock, AM., (2018). How Scientists Reveal The Secret Migrations of Fish. Frontiers for Young Minds. 6

Sturrock, AM., Hunter, E., Milton, JA., Johnson, RC., Waring, CP. and Trueman, CN., (2015). Quantifying physiological influences on otolith microchemistry. Methods in Ecology and Evolution. 6 (7), 806-816

Sturrock, AM., Wikert, JD., Heyne, T., Mesick, C., Hubbard, AE., Hinkelman, TM., Weber, PK., Whitman, GE., Glessner, JJ. and Johnson, RC., (2015). Reconstructing the Migratory Behavior and Long-Term Survivorship of Juvenile Chinook Salmon under Contrasting Hydrologic Regimes. PLOS ONE. 10 (5), e0122380-e0122380

Darnaude, AM., Sturrock, A., Trueman, CN., Mouillot, D., EIMF, Campana, SE. and Hunter, E., (2014). Listening In on the Past: What Can Otolith δ18O Values Really Tell Us about the Environmental History of Fishes?. PLoS ONE. 9 (10), e108539-e108539

(2014). Correction: Listening In on the Past: What Can Otolith δ18O Values Really Tell Us about the Environmental History of Fishes?. PLoS ONE. 9 (12), e114951-e114951

Sturrock, AM., Trueman, CN., Milton, JA., Waring, CP., Cooper, MJ. and Hunter, E., (2014). Physiological influences can outweigh environmental signals in otolith microchemistry research. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 500, 245-264

Sturrock, AM., Hunter, E., Milton, JA. and Trueman, CN., (2013). Analysis methods and reference concentrations of 12 minor and trace elements in fish blood plasma. Journal of Trace Elements in Medicine and Biology. 27 (4), 273-285

Sturrock, AM., Trueman, CN., Darnaude, AM. and Hunter, E., (2012). Can otolith elemental chemistry retrospectively track migrations in fully marine fishes?. Journal of Fish Biology. 81 (2), 766-795

Lawton, RJ., Wing, SR. and Lewis, AM., (2010). Evidence for discrete subpopulations of sea perch (Helicolenus ercoides) across four fjords in Fiordland, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research. 44 (4), 309-322

Reports and Papers (3)

Sturrock, A., Null, S., Mount, J., Gray, B., Dybala, K., Sencan, G., Thompson, B. and Zeff, H., (2022). Storing Water for the Environment - Operating Reservoirs to Improve California’s Freshwater Ecosystems

Sturrock, A. and Johnson, R., (2013). Contribution of hatchery and natural origin Chinook salmon to the Lower Yuba River

Sturrock, A., Whitman, G. and Johnson, R., (2012). Otolith microchemistry to determine size at outmigration of adult Chinook salmon in the Tuolumne and Merced rivers

Grants and funding

2022

Developing a bass tissue bank for the study of connectivity between European coastal nursery habitats

Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs

2021

ATLANTIC SALMON �EYES AND EARS� FEASIBILITY STUDY

Atlantic Salmon Trust

From Ions to Ecosystems: A Novel Framework for the Biomonitoring and Management of Vulnerable and Commercial Fishes

Medical Research Council

Contact

anna.sturrock@essex.ac.uk

Location:

Colchester Campus

More about me
Personal website: http://www.anna-sturrock.com/

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