Research Conducted a Decade Apart Leads to the Discovery of New Information About Red Snapped Reproduction

James H. Cowan, professor, Department of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences, College of the Coast & Environment at LSU has been a major professor for graduate students for several years. While working with former graduate student Dannielle Kulaw, Cowan realized that Kulaw’ research was similar to that of another former graduate student, Melissa Woods Jackson. Both Kulaw and Jackson had collected similar data concerning red snapper reproductive biology, but the two data sets had been collected 10 years apart.

Cowan arranged for both of these scientists to meet with him to discuss the data and reconcile methodologies. The result is the manuscript, “Temporal and Spatial Comparisons of the Reproductive Biology of Northern Gulf of Mexico (USA) Red Snapper (Lutjanus campechanus) Collected a Decade Apart,” which has been approved for publication by The Public Library of Science ONE.

To their knowledge, this comparison is the first of its kind for red snapper in the US Gulf of Mexico. The research addresses the long-term issue of age distribution of red snapper in the Gulf and indicates a shift to more reproduction in red snapper, age eight and up. This information will be critical to decision-makers concerning the management and long-term sustainability of this species.

Congratulations to James Cowan, Dannielle Kulaw, and Melissa Woods Jackson for their work in revealing new data about current red snapper reproduction!