Bob Warner is a professor and Chair of Marine Biology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He received his Ph.D. from Scripps Institution of Oceanography in 1973. After spending two years as a Smithsonian Postdoctoral Fellow at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in the Republic of Panama, he was appointed to the faculty at Santa Barbara. He was founding Chair of the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology until 1998, and is currently serving in that capacity again. Warner’s work lies in two areas, both dealing primarily with marine fishes.
The first area is in behavioral ecology, focusing on the evolution of reproductive strategies. The other active area of Warner’s published research is in recruitment, conservation, and ecology of marine fishes. His research (over 145 publications) has primarily taken place off the California coast, Panama, the Virgin Islands, Palmyra atoll, Japan, and Corsica.
Large-scale, highly detailed ocean circulation models are being used intensively to design marine reserve networks along the west coast of North America. While these models are quite useful, they were pressed into service as soon as they were developed, with little or no validation of the matrices of population connectivity that are their principal product. Here I describe our program to validate these models using physical and biological data, with time and space scales ranging from single recruitment events to population-wide patterns of genetic variation. I will finish with a consideration of the ecological and evolutionary implications of highly variable connectivity generated by large-scale ocean turbulence.