Specialisms: Gelatinous zooplankton, jellyfish blooms, zooplankton
Dr Lucas has published 39 articles and 3 book chapters in peer-reviewed literature. She has produced a new book “Jellyfish Blooms” Pitt KA & Lucas CH (eds), Springer, which has been published as an e-book in 2013 and in hard copy in 2014.
I have a broad interest in coastal and estuarine processes, in particular the interaction between biological communities and the environment, and how ecosystems function and respond to change. My main research focus is the biology and ecological role of jellyfish in pelagic food webs, in particular studies of the population dynamics, trophic impact and reproductive biology of UK species. Current research projects are focusing on the magnitude, causes and consequences of jellyfish blooms around the globe; polyp ecology and the roles of asexual and sexual reproduction in forming and maintaining jellyfish populations; phenotypic differences between populations of Aurelia; causes of, and problems associated with jellyfish stranding on beaches; and the macro-ecology of mesopelagic jellyfish.
Recently funded research projects:
Hirst AG & Lucas CH (2009 – 2012) Copepod sex ratio dynamics: the role of predators and food. NERC Standard grant.
Condon RH, Duarte CM, Graham WM et al. (2009 – 2011) Global expansion of jellyfish blooms: magnitude, causes and consequences. National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS), UC Santa Barbara, via NSF funding.
Lucas CH & Houghton JDR (QUB). 2012-2013. The influence of scyphozoan polyps on the distribution and abundance of bloom-forming jellyfish. National Geographic Society, Global Exploration Fund.
The jellywatch website http://www.jellywatch.org/blooms contains further links to the global jellyfish blooms project, which includes an online newsletter, project updates and the YouTube video of the Jellyfish ROCK public outreach event hosted by the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.
Supervision for postgraduate students
Mike Blackett - Joint University of Southampton and SAHFOS funded (2011-)
Biology and ecology of a common blooming jellyfish, the siphonophore Muggiaea atlantica
Graihagh Hardinge - Joint NHM-University of Southampton studentship (2013-)
The macroecology of globally distributed deep-sea jellyfish
Laura McMonagle - (2013-)
An integrated evolutionary study of Scyphozoan life histories
Danja Hoehn - (2013-)
Why is Aurelia common? Examining the plasticity of widespread bloom forming jellyfish
Marine Biology and Ecology
Dr Cathy Lucas
Student Office, Room 566/03 University of Southampton Waterfront Campus National Oceanography Centre European Way Southampton SO14 3ZH
Room Number: NOCS/456/08
Telephone: (023) 8059 6617