2006 B.A. Biology, Lawrence University (Appleton, WI)
I am broadly interested in invasive species ecology, specifically the factors having to do with population expansion to new habitats. My research will focus on the round goby (Neogobius melanostomus), an invasive benthic fish that has established itself as a menace in the Laurentian Great Lakes. Round goby now threatens to expand into tributaries to the great lakes as well as the Mississippi River system. I plan to conduct field surveys for goby in these tributaries to model their expansion and use GIS technology predict which systems are most vulnerable. These predictions will provide crucial information to managers hoping to prevent the spread of goby.
During the summer of 2005, I investigated alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus) habitat selection as a function of foraging behavior in the coastal waters of Lake Michigan under the mentorship of John Janssen. Alewives were found to select for rocky habitat over sandy habitat due to a higher density of chironomids in rocky habitat. Alewives were found to feed heavily on chironomid pupae when over rocks. These data illustrate that even a supposedly obligate planktivore can associate with rocky habitat, and that population studies taken over only sandy habitat b/c of ease of sampling may be inaccurate.
Kornis, Matthew and Janssen, John. The Alewife: a Pelagic Obligate Zooplanktivore Found in Rocky Habitat. In prep.
I hail from Milwaukee, WI, and enjoy camping, hiking, fishing (most outdoorsy things). I'm also into photography, shooting pool, playing tennis, playing all sorts of poker, and writing music for the piano.