Department of Biology
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DONN K. BRANSTRATOR, Associate Professor
Donn Branstrator

B.A., 1987, Lawrence University
Ph.D., 1993, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Email: dbranstr@d.umn.edu
Office: 15 SSB
Phone: 218-726-8134

Office Hours: Tuesday 10 - 12 p.m. and by appointment

Research Interests

I am a limnologist interested in the ecology of freshwater zooplankton. Themes of my reseach program include: 1) Invasion dynamics of the predatory cladoceran Bythotrephes longimanus in North America, 2) Experimental evaluation of risk-release relationships for non-native species, and 3) Patterns of nutrient flow in the Lake Superior food web. My research program is currently supported by Minnesota Sea Grant, the Great Lakes Maritime Research Institute, the Great Lake Protection Fund, and the University of Minnesota Duluth. I teach General Ecology, Lake Ecology, Plankton Biology, and a Senior Seminar in Public Speaking at the University of Minnesota Duluth as well as a field course called Aquatic Food Webs at the Itasca Biological Station in Minnesota.

Selected Publications

  • Branstrator, DK, LJ Shannon, ME Brown, and MT Kitson. 2013. Effects of chemical and physical conditions on hatching success of Bythotrephes longimanus resting eggs. Limnology and Oceanography. In press.
  • Brown, ME, DK Branstrator, and LJ Shannon. 2012. Population regulation of the spiny water flea (Bythotrephes longimanus) in a reservoir: Implications for invasion. Limnology and Oceanography 57:251-271.
  • Brown, ME, and DK Branstrator. 2011. Patterns in the abundance, phenology, and hatching of the resting egg stage of the invasive zooplankter Bythotrephes longimanus: Implications for establishment. Biological invasions 13:2547-2559.
  • Branstrator, DK. 2010. Origins of Types of Lake Basins. In G. Likens [Ed], Lake Ecosystem Ecology: A derivative of Encyclopedia of Inland Waters. Elsevier. Pp. 191-202.
  • Branstrator, DK, ME Brown, LJ Shannon, M Thabes, and K Heimgartner. 2006. Range expansion of Bythotrephes longimanus in North America: Evaluating habitat characteristics in the spread of an exotic zoolankter. Biological Invasions 8:1367-1379.
  • Branstrator, DK. 2005. Contrasting life histories of the predatory cladocerans Leptodora kindtiiand Bythotrephes longimanus. Journal of Plankton Research 27:569-585.

Current Graduate Students

  • Michael Sorenson
  • Matthew TenEyck

Recent Graduate Student Projects

  • Matt TenEyck. PhD candidate in Water Resource Science. 'Evaluating the risk-release relationship of International Maritime Organziation standards for ballast water treatment systems using a surrogate cladoceran invader.'
  • Samantha Oliver. Recent MS graduate in Integrated Biosciences. 'Nutrient regeneration by the zooplankton community in the deep chlorophyll layer of Lake Superior.' Currently a PhD student at the University of Wisconsin Madison.
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