California Academy of Sciences 150th Anniversary Celebration
150th Anniversary Celebration 150 Years: A Timeline 150 Years of Research The New Academy
Senior Scientist and Department Chair John McCosker in the Ichthyology collections.

Aquatic Biology is endowed as a distinct research department and Senior Scientist John McCosker is named the first Chairman. McCosker conducts the first deep sea exploration of the Galápagos Islands using a manned submersible.

John McCosker undertakes the first deep sea exploration of Cuba using a manned submersible. This study represents the first joint Cuban/American biological oceanographic expedition since Cuba’s 1959 revolution.

Successful completion of a 10 year-long salmon husbandry project. John McCosker is Co-Principal Investigator for the program.

Anthropology | Aquatic Biology | Botany | Entomology | Herpetology | Ichthyology | IZG | Library | Ornithology & Mammalogy | Steinhart Aquarium | Morrison Planetarium | Education | Exhibits | Operations | Academy Store

Aquatic Biology | The Study of Life in Water

Evolution & Behavior of Aquatic Life
Studying microscopic bacteria to man-eating sharks, the Academy’s newest research department combines field and laboratory studies of aquatic animals. Steinhart’s living collection, the extensive Ichthyology collection, and an enormous library of aquatic animal tissues are available for research in this field.

Great White Sharks
John McCosker’s studies of white shark behavior led to a book plus many scientific publications and public broadcast films that changed our understanding of this animal. Its behavior is explainable and somewhat predictable. McCosker’s work has informed public safety policies for coastal waters, and legislation to protect white sharks.
A Century-Long Tradition of Galápagos Study Continues
John McCosker has made numerous collections and studies using S.C.U.B.A. and deepwater submersibles to 1000 meters depth. Many of the fishes and invertebrates he collected are species new to science. By analyzing and describing Galápagos fishes and their habitats, he increases understanding of nearshore fish evolution and island biogeography. This understanding can help Ecuador’s government with resource management decisions.

Endangered Salmon
Collaborating with UC’s Bodega Marine Laboratory, John McCosker launched a ten year captive breeding program for endangered Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon. The goals were to maintain the stock, increase their numbers and probability for survival, and learn more about maintaining genetic diversity. Steinhart’s initial efforts increased the wild population of 191 to 3500 winter-run Chinook.


150th Anniversary Celebration | 150 Years: A Timeline | 150 Years of Research | The New Academy

©2003 California Academy of Sciences


California Academy of Sciences 150th Anniversary Celebration