UCF Biology

Linda Walters

Research Area(s): Human impacts in the marine environment. Both pure ecology questions and goal-based conservation issues for a wide range of marine and estuarine habitats.

Research

Dr. Walter’s research focuses on human impacts in the marine environment. She is interested in both pure ecology questions and goal-based conservation issues for a wide range of marine and estuarine habitats in the Caribbean and the southeastern US, especially the Indian River Lagoon system (IRL) and the Florida Keys. In the IRL, her program focuses on understanding interactions among organisms on intertidal oyster reefs (including invasive barnacles and mussels), as well as looking at the impacts of recreational boat wakes on the recent declines of these reefs. They are collaborating with The Nature Conservancy on community-based restoration of this critical habitat. Other on-going research in the IRL includes studies on mangroves and salt marsh plants, boat propeller scar impacts on seagrass beds, and dispersal and allelopathic impacts of invasive Brazilian pepper on native flora. Additional research in her lab on invasive species has targeted dispersal of one of the world�s 100 worst invasive species, Caulerpa taxifolia, via e-commerce and retail shops. Outreach to the aquarium industry is currently underway with colleagues from CA Sea Grant. In the Florida Keys, Bahamas and Virgin Islands, she has been collaborating with many scientists to better understand how increases in abundances of certain species of macroalgae significantly reduces recruitment and survival of hard corals and how the return of the long-spined sea urchin Diadema antillarium may change this pattern.

News

Stabilizing the Shoreline an Oyster at a Time

Linda Walters, Ph.D., and Melinda Donnelly, Ph.D. work together to stabilize Florida’s estuarine shorelines that have severely eroded due to storms and boat wakes. Since 2007 the duo’s work has restored 82 reefs and... Read more

Maps, Apps and Drones

University of Central Florida professors of geographic information systems and biology teamed up Wednesday to take GIS technology and drones into Florida classrooms for 5th grade through high school. In the geospatial t... Read more

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