Staff Profile
Anson Hines Photo


Dr. Anson “Tuck” Hines has served as director of the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC) since 2005. Located on the Chesapeake Bay 25 miles east of Washington, D.C., SERC studies human impacts, natural processes and land-sea connections in coastal ecosystems. He served as SERC’s assistant director from 1988 to 2004 and has been a marine ecologist and principal investigator of SERC’s Fish & Invertebrate Ecology Laboratory since 1979. As director, he oversees research, professional training and public programs in global change, landscape ecology, coastal ecosystems, and population and community ecology.  SERC programs extend around world with global research networks in forest and marine ecosystems.

Dr. Hines has a B.A. degree in Zoology from Pomona College and a Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of California at Berkeley. He has conducted research on coastal ecosystems in Chesapeake Bay, Florida, California, Alaska, Belize, Japan, and New Zealand.  Dr. Hines has been leader on a diverse array of 130 research projects funded by extramural grants and contracts, including: effects of thermal discharges of coastal power plants; sea otters and kelp forest ecology; long-term ecological change in Chesapeake Bay; marine food web dynamics; predator-prey interactions; impacts of fisheries, aquaculture and fishery restoration; crustacean life histories; and biological invasions of coastal ecosystems.  An expert on blue crabs, he has studied the biology of crabs around the world.  Hines has published more than 150 articles in technical journals and books. 

Dr. Hines has advanced SERC’s land conservation program, which now encompasses 2,650 acres of the Rhode River watershed and shoreline, providing the largest contiguous block of land for environmental research, public education and access on the shoreline of Chesapeake Bay.  He also led an innovative master plan for sustainable development and management of the Rhode River site. Most recently, he oversaw construction of the new $57-million Mathias Laboratory, the first LEED-Platinum building in the Smithsonian.  He promoted establishment of the Smithsonian Marine Science Network for comparative studies of coastal ecosystems at the Institution’s four long-term research facilities along the Western Atlantic.  He serves as chair of the Smithsonian Diving Control Board, which oversees the safety of the nation’s largest scientific diving program.  Dr. Hines is an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland, College Park. He also has served as a major advisor for 20 post-doctoral fellows, 11 Ph.D. students and 10 M.S. students, and as mentor for more than 165 undergraduate interns.


  • Ogburn, Matthew Bryan, Bangley, Charles W., Aguilar, Robert, Fisher, Robert A., Curran, Mary Carla, Webb, Sarah Fae and Hines, Anson H. (2018). Migratory connectivity and philopatry of cownose rays Rhinoptera bonasus along the Atlantic coast, USA. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 602 , 197-211.
  • Glaspie, Cassandra N., Seitz, Rochelle D., Ogburn, Matthew Bryan, Dungan, Christopher F. and Hines, Anson H. (2018). Impacts of habitat, predators, recruitment, and disease on soft-shell clams Mya arenaria and stout razor clams Tagelus plebeius in Chesapeake Bay . Marine Ecology Progress Series, 603 , 117-133.
  • Douglass, James G., Paperno, Richard, Reyier, Eric A. and Hines, Anson H. (2018). Fish and seagrass communities vary across a marine reserve boundary, but seasonal variation in small fish abundance overshadows top-down effects of large consumer exclosures. Journal of experimental marine biology and ecology, 507 , 39-52.
  • Seitz, Rochelle D., Lipcius, Romuald N. and Hines, Anson H. (2017). Consumer versus resource control and the importance of habitat heterogeneity for estuarine bivalves. Oikos, 126 (1) , 121-135.
  • Aguilar, Robert, Ogburn, Matthew Bryan, Driskell, Amy C., Weigt, Lee A., Groves, Mary C. and Hines, Anson H. (2017). Gutsy genetics: identification of digested piscine prey items in the stomach contents of sympatric native and introduced warmwater catfishes via DNA barcoding. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 100 (4) , 235-336.
  • Ogburn, Matthew Bryan, Spires, Jason, Aguilar, Robert, Goodison, Michael R., Heggie, Keira, Kinnebrew, Eva, McBurney, William, Richie, Kimberly D., Roberts, Paige M. and Hines, Anson H. (2017). Assessment of River Herring Spawning Runs in a Chesapeake Bay Coastal Plain Stream using Imaging Sonar. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, 146 (1) , 22-35.
  • Kornis, Matthew S., Breitburg, Denise, Balouskus, Richard, Bilkovic, Donna M., Davias, Lori A., Giordano, Steve, Heggie, Keira, Hines, Anson H., Jacobs, John M., Jordan, Thomas E., King, Ryan S., Patrick, Christopher J., Seitz, Rochelle D., Soulen, Heather, Targett, Timothy E., Weller, Donald E., Whigham, Dennis F. and Uphoff, Jim. (2017). Linking the Abundance of Estuarine Fish and Crustaceans in Nearshore Waters to Shoreline Hardening and Land Cover . Estuaries and Coasts, 40 (5) , 1464-1486.
  • Rick, Torben C., Reeder-Myers, Leslie, Carr, Michael J. and Hines, Anson H. (2017). 3000 Years of Human Subsistence and Estuarine Resource Exploitation on the Rhode River Estuary, Chesapeake Bay, Maryland. Journal of the North Atlantic, , 113-125.
  • Rick, Torben C., Reeder-Myers, Leslie, Hofman, Courtney A., Breitburg, Denise L., Lockwood, Rowan, Henkes, Gregory, Kellogg, Lisa, Lowery, Darrin, Luckenbach, Mark W., Mann, Roger, Ogburn, Matthew Bryan, Southworth, Melissa, Wah, John, Wesson, James and Hines, Anson H. (2016). Millennial-scale sustainability of the Chesapeake Bay Native American oyster fishery. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 113 (23) , 6568-6573.
  • Rick, Torben C., Ogburn, Matthew Bryan, Kramer, Margaret, McCanty, Sean T., Reeder-Myers, Leslie, Miller, Henry M. and Hines, Anson H. (2015). Archaeology, taphonomy, and historical ecology of Chesapeake Bay blue crabs (Callinectes sapidus) . Journal of Archaeological Science, 55 , 42-54.
  • Ogburn, Matthew Bryan, Roberts, Paige M., Richie, Kimberly D., Johnson, Eric G. and Hines, Anson H. (2014). Temporal and spatial variation in sperm stores in mature female blue crabs Callinectes sapidus and potential effects on brood production in Chesapeake Bay. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 507 , 249-262.
  • Long, W. C., Sellers, Andrew J. and Hines, Anson H. (2013). Mechanism by which coarse woody debris affects predation and community structure in Chesapeake Bay. Journal of experimental marine biology and ecology, 446 , 297-305.
  • Eggleston, David B., Herrnkind, William F. and Hines, Anson H. (2013). Behavioral Ecology of Mobil Animals: Insights from In Situ Observations . Research and Discoveries: The Revolution of Science through Scuba (99-114)
  • Long, William C. and Hines, Anson H. (2012). Scale and the guild functional response: Density-dependent predation varies with plot size. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 413 , 50-55.
  • Li, Shuguo, Cheng, Yongxu, Zhou, Bo and Hines, Anson H. (2012). Changes in Biochemical Composition of Newly Spawned Eggs, Prehatching Embryos and Newly Hatched Larvae of the Blue Crab Callinectes sapidus. Journal of Shellfish Research, 31 (4) , 941-946.