Tom’s research focused on the diet of larval lamprey using isotopes to give a fuller understanding of lamprey life history. Diets of larvae have been difficult to analyze historically because they are composed of large amounts of microscopic material and detritus. In the past ecologists have been forced to use gut content analysis to determine what ammocoetes were relying on for growth, but this has produced unclear conclusions. Isotopic analysis better describes what larvae are dependent on in their environment and could help managers better predict highly productive larval rearing grounds.
Check out Tom’s blog about his research on Lampreys here!