Lubchenco/Menge Lab

Welcome to the Lubchenco/Menge Lab

Our lab has diverse interests that are united by a common goal: understanding the dynamics of natural ecological communities. Our insights into community regulation, biodiversity, and global change are generated primarily by research on rocky shores and marine ecosystems. We approach questions at a variety of scales and with a diversity of tools ranging from biochemical studies at the suborganismal level, to controlled field experiments in intertidal communities, to biogeographic comparisons among the coasts of Oregon, New Zealand, and Chile.


The overall scientific goal of PISCO is to understand the meta-ecosystem dynamics of inner shelf region of the California Current Large Marine Ecosystem (CCLME) and its response to climate change. At OSU, we approach this problem through the coordinated activities of five research teams. These are: mooring (inner shelf oceanography), onshore (intertidal meta-ecosystem ecology), biodiversity (intertidal community structure), larval transport (inner shelf and surf zone recruitment dynamics) and climate impacts on CCLME (integrating ecology, oceanography, genomics, and biogeochemistry to understand CCLME responses to hypoxia and ocean acidification). Our policy team allows us to provide accurate scientific information about nearshore ecosystems to policy makers, resource managers, the media, undergraduate and graduate students, and the public. Click on the highlighted text above or the links below to view photos or obtain detailed information about the individual projects of our lab.


Our lab is involved with the Partnership for Interdisciplinary Studies of Coastal Oceans (PISCO). Over the last 10 years, PISCO has successfully built a unique research program that combines complementary disciplines to answer critical environmental questions and inform management and policy. Activities are conducted at the latitudinal scale of the California Current Large Marine Ecosystem along the west coast of North America, but anchored around the dynamics of coastal, hardbottom habitats and the oceanography of the nearshore ocean – among the most productive and diverse components of this ecosystem. The program integrates studies of changes in the ocean environment through ecological monitoring and experiments. Scientists examine the causes and consequences of ecosystem changes over spatial scales that are the most relevant to marine species and management, but largely unstudied elsewhere. Findings are linked to solutions through a growing portfolio of tools for policy and management decisions. The time from scientific discovery to policy change is greatly reduced by coordinated, efficient links between scientists and key decision makers.

---prospective student information---