Volunteer Monitoring Programs - Join Us

Chesapeake Bay Parasite Project
Mid-Atlantic Chinese Mitten Crab Watch California Kelp Watch
Alaska Green Crab Watch
Alaska Plate Watch

About the Lab 

The Marine Invasions Research Lab is a national and international center for research on biological invasions in coastal marine ecosystems. Biological invasions (the establishment of species beyond their historical range) are a major force of ecological and evolutionary change. Invasions are fundamentally changing the structure and function of ecosystems around the world and are impacting many dimensions of human society. The observed rates and impacts of new invasions have increased dramatically in recent time. ...more

 National database of marine invasions


Feature Story - December 2014

Searching the Kelp Forest for Non-native Species

Join our divers as they search for introduced species under the kelp forests off the beaches of Monterey Peninsula. Michelle Marraffini describes the surveys of non-native species introductions in the kelp forest and how we are targeting species that may be moving out of Monterey Harbor. Non-native species are spread many ways including through shipping (ballast water are hull fouling), aquaculture, and the aquarium trade. Once established in the harbors and marinas they can spread to natural areas, such as these kelp forests, where they interact with the native community, possibly altering the ecosystem.  Full Story

New Publications

Ashton, G.V., I.C. Davidson, and G.M. Ruiz.  2014.  Transient small boats as a long-distance coastal vector for dispersal of biofouling organisms.  Estuaries and Coasts, DOI: 10.1007/s12237-014-9782-9.

Miller, A.W. and G.M. Ruiz. 2014. Arctic shipping and marine invaders. Nature Climate Change, 4(6): 413-416.

Ojaveer, H., et.al. 2014. Ten recommendations for advancing the assessment and management of non-indigenous species in marine ecosystems. Marine Policy, 44: 160-165. doi:10.1016/j.marpol.2013.08.019

Ros, M., G.V. Ashton, M.B. Lacerda, J.T. Carlton, M. Vázquez-Luis, J.M. Guerra-García, and G.M. Ruiz. 2014. The Panama Canal and the transoceanic dispersal of marine invertebrates: Evaluation of the introduced amphipod Paracaprella pusilla Mayer, 1890 in the Pacific Ocean. Marine Environmental Research, doi:10.1016/j.marenvres.2014.07.001

Zabin, C.J., G.V. Ashton, C.W. Brown, I.C. Davidson, M.D. Sytsma, and G.M. Ruiz. 2014.Small boats provide connectivity for nonindigenous marine species between a highly invaded international port and nearby coastal harbors. Management of Biological Invasions. 5(2):97-112
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.3391/mbi.2014.5.2.03

See full listing


Dr. Gregory M. Ruiz/Senior Scientist
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

647 Contees Wharf Road,
PO Box 28
Edgewater, Maryland 21037

Phone:(443) 482-2227
Email: ruizg@si.edu

Public Outreach: Monaca Noble
Phone: (443) 482-2467, T-TH
Email: noblem@si.edu