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Natalie Low

Ph.D., Biology, Stanford University
B.S., Marine Biology, Brown University
I am interested in understanding how environmental stress and variability impact organisms, populations, and ecosystems, particularly in the context of climate change. My current research uses laboratory and field experiments to examine how small- and large-scale spatial differences in patterns of temperature, dissolved oxygen, and pH variability can impact the performance of economically important benthic species like abalone. This work is done in collaboration with small-scale fishing cooperatives in Baja California, Mexico, and will directly inform fishery management decisions.
My doctoral research assessed the impacts of upwelling-driven hypoxia on sea urchins in kelp forests. As part of that work, I developed a low-cost, open-source control system to manipulate water temperature, oxygen, and pH in seawater aquaria in a realistic, temporally variable, multiple-stressor context. I am using this system to expand capacity for climate change research at Hopkins and at partner institutions such as UABC. 
Low, N.H.N. and F. Micheli. 2018. Lethal and functional thresholds of hypoxia in two key benthic grazers. Marine Ecology Progress Series 594:165-173
O’Leary, J., F. Micheli, L. Airoldi, C. Boch, G. De Leo, R. Elahi, F. Ferretti, N.A.J. Graham, S.Y. Litvin, N.H.N. Low, S. Lummis, K.J. Nickols, J. Wong. 2017. The resilience of marine ecosystems to climatic disturbances. BioScience 67(3):201-220
Leenhardt, P., N.H.N. Low, N. Pascal, F. Micheli and J. Claudet. 2015. The role of Marine Protected Areas in providing ecosystem services. Pages 211-230 in A. Belgrano, G. Woodward and U. Jacob, editors. Aquatic Functional Biodiversity: An Ecological and Evolutionary Perspective. Academic Press, Waltham, Massachusetts, USA.
Low, N.H.N., A. Drouin, C.J. Marks and M.E.S. Bracken. 2015. Invader traits and community context contribute to the recent invasion success of the macroalga Heterosiphonia japonica on New England rocky reefs. Biological Invasions 17:257-271
Bracken, M.E.S. and N.H.N. Low. 2012. Realistic losses of rare species disproportionately impact higher trophic levels. Ecology Letters 15:461-467