Andrew T. Chin

scientist, sailor, coder, teacher ///

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Hello! I am a fisheries ecologist interested in aquatic life histories, distribution, and ecology. My current projects include studying the life history of Dolly Varden from Bristol Bay with the Quinn lab at the University of Washington in Seattle, assessing Puget Sound culverts for fish passability with Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and improving my coding skills. My past experiences include ecological restoration, tallship sailing, and studying plankton ecology in the California Current and Central Pacific. I will be joining the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission as a research intern in Vancouver, B.C. in December 2020/January 2021. There, I will be studying the winter ecology of salmonids in the Gulf of Alaska.


I am considering graduate school, where I hope to:

After completing graduate school, I plan to pursue a career as an applied fisheries ecologist in academia or with a federal agency.


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My name is Andrew, and I’m a 2020 graduate of the University of Washington (UW) with a double-bachelor’s degree in Aquatic and Fishery Sciences and Marine Biology, with double minors in Oceanography and Urban Ecological Design. My time at the School of Aquatic and Fisheries Sciences (SAFS) has mostly been spent studying salmonids. I analyzed otoliths and stable isotopes to study Dolly Varden from Bristol Bay, Alaska and built floating wetlands for outmigrating smolts in the Duwamish Waterway. In addition, I was an intern at COASST and the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture. Currently, I am a technician with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife assessing stream culverts and upstream habitat for fish use potential by salmonids.

photo by Nate Johnson photo by Nate Johnson

My research has also taken me to sea. In summer 2019 I studied larval Dungeness crab distributions in the Northern California Current with the Sponaugle-Cowen lab (I presented these results at the 2020 Ocean Sciences Meeting in San Diego, CA). The summer before I collected zooplankton samples in the Phoenix Islands Protected Area in the Central Pacific with Sea Education Association. I hope to continue spanning ecosystems, studying how species’ life history traits and distribution interact with drivers of change through a strong field and quantitative approach.

Since graduating, I’ve become interested in improving my quantitative and coding skills to more thoroughly probe ecological questions through models and statistics. To that end, I have invested a lot of time into refining my R skills, learning Python and SQL, re-acquainting myself with statistics, and familiarizing myself with technologies like big data, machine learning, and remote sensing. I hope to leverage my expertise in marine/aquatic ecology to these realms in order to supplement traditional data collection methods and ask new questions.


As an Asian-American and under-represented minority in the environmental sciences, science communication and mentorship have been essential to me. Prior to college I volunteered at the Seattle Aquarium as an interpreter and worked environmental education programs on the historic schooner Adventuress. While at the UW, I was a founding member of the undergraduate research journal FieldNotes and a Washington Sea Grant Science Communication Fellow. I also was a mentor in the UW College of the Environment Mentoring Program.

When I’m not at my computer or in the field, I enjoy cycling, gardening, fishing, sailing, backpacking - anything that keeps me moving and in nature. I’m always looking to lend my skills and passion as an ecologist, coder, and teacher. Send me an email if you want to collaborate!

Research Inspirations

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Some studies, projects, and articles that define my interests or just make me go **wow.**

Salmonid Ecology

“How climate change is triggering a chain reaction that threatens the heart of the Pacific.” The Washington Post

Population diversity and the portfolio effect in an exploited species. Schindler et al. 2010, Nature

Shifting habitat mosaics and fish production across river basins. Brennan et al. 2019, Nature

Bidirectional connectivity in rivers and implications for watershed stability and management. Moore 2015, Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences

Species and population diversity in Pacific salmon fisheries underpin indigenous food security. Nesbitt & Moore 2016, Journal of Applied Ecology

Potential responses to climate change in organisms with complex life histories: Evolution and plasticity in Pacific salmon. Crozier et al. 2007, Ecological Applications

Sustainable Fisheries & Stock Assessments

The expected impacts of climate change on the ocean economy, Gaines et al. 2019. Washington, DC: World Resources Institute.

Global fishery prospects under contrasting management regimes. Costello et al. 2016, PNAS

Science in support of a nonlinear non-equilibrium world. 2020, ICES Journal of Marine Science

Status and solutions for the world’s unassessed fisheries. Costello et al. 2012, Science

“Discussions of outcomes from the 2019 FAO International Symposium on Fisheries Sustainability: Strengthening the science–policy nexus,” presented by Ray Hilborn, Libby Logerwell, and Kirstin Holsman (YT video)

Performance evaluation of data-limited, length-based stock assessment methods. Chong et al. 2020, ICES Journal of Marine Science

Stock synthesis: A biological and statistical framework for fish stock assessment and fishery management. Methot Jr. & Wetzel 2013, Fisheries Research

Ecological Forecasting

Recruitment limitation in Dungeness crab populations driven by variation in atmospheric forcing. Shanks & Roegner 2007, Ecology

Interannual variation in the coastal distribution of a juvenile gadid in the northeast Pacific Ocean: The relevance of wind and effect on recruitment. Wilson & Laman 2020, Fisheries Oceanography

Designing river flows to improve food security futures in the Lower Mekong Basin. Sabo et al 2017, Science (see also an extensive talk by Gordon Holtgrieve)

“Ecological forecasting: Why I’m a hypocrite and you may be one too.” Dynamic Ecology blog

Prediction, precaution, and policy under global change. Schindler & Hilborn 2015, Science


White Shark Cafe.

Ecosystem responses to community disassembly. Zavaleta et al. 2009, The Year in Ecology and Conservation Biology

Foundation species promote community stability by increasing diversity in a giant kelp forest. Lamy et al. 2020, Ecology

Evidence and patterns of tuna spawning inside a large no-take Marine Protected Area. Hernández et al. 2019, Scientific Reports

Deep pelagic food structure as revealed by in situ feeding observations. Choy et al. 2017, Proceedings of the Royal Society B

Demographic dynamics of the smallest marine vertebrates fuel coral reef ecosystem functioning. Brandl et al. 2019, Science

Early life history and fisheries oceanography: New questions in a changing world. Llopiz et al. 2015, Oceanography

Big Data & Machine Learning

“What’s So Big About Big Data?” by Darcy Bradley, UCSB emLab

Toward an environmental Internet of Things. Hart & Martinez 2015 Earth and Space Science Technical Reports: Methods

Automating the analysis of fish abundance using object detection: Optimizing animal ecology with deep learning. Ditria et al. 2020, Frontiers in Marine Science

Classification of fish species from different ecosystems using the near infrared diffuse reflectance spectra of otoliths. Benson et al. 2020, Journal of Near Infrared Spectroscopy

Fisheries information management modernization workshop. Margolis et al. 2020, NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-F/SPO-204

“Growing More With Less: Smart Tech Solutions to Feed the World.” Presented by Faisal Hossian (YT video)

Microsoft AI for Earth Partners.

Open Science

Skills and knowledge for data-intensive environmental research. Hampton et al. 2017 BioScience


Data-intensive ecological research is catalyzed by open science and team science. Hampton et al. 2017 BioScience

salmon/data/integration project from UW Data Ecologies Lab, spearheaded by PhD candidate Sarah Inman (website, NCEAS interview)

Science Communication & Mentorship

“What Black scientists want from colleagues and their institutions” by Virginia Gewin, Nature News

Creating and maintaining high‐performing collaborative research teams: The importance of diversity and interpersonal skills. Cheruvelil et al. 2014, Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment

Promoting inclusion in ecological field experiences: Examining and overcoming barriers to a professional rite of passage. Morales et al. 2020, Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America

Dr. Chelsea Wood’s Communications page (highly! recommend watching her lectures)

“Whitesides’ Group: Writing a Paper” by George M. Whitesides