seaql lab

Data Science for Marine Ecology and Conservation


The SeaQL Lab at Virginia Tech is an interdisciplinary group working on different aspects of Fisheries Science, Marine Ecology and Conservation. With a special interest in sharks and rays, we look to characterize the structure and function of natural ecosystems and develop solutions for sustainable ocean use. Taking advantage of unorthodox data sources, we attempt to fill knowledge gaps that inform important ecological systems. 

The name SeaQL stands for a turning point in marine conservation and sustainability. We are committed to writing a bright sequel in the history of ocean use by embracing the big data revolution and advances in analytics and ocean technology. Currently, the SeaQL lab works in the realms of ecoinformatics, fisheries sciences, quantitative ecology, and technology development for ocean monitoring. The latter involves developing innovations to combat illegal fishing and monitor large stretches of the ocean, including large marine protected areas, mega-reserves, and ocean sanctuaries. 

We invite marine ecologists, conservation and fisheries scientists, computer and data scientists, engineers and statisticians to collaborate with us on projects of ecological and conservation relevance.

2.2m white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) seen by @SharkSpotters research team on December 6, 2021 in False Bay, South Africa. #sharkPulse

The team was on an expedition to tag bronze whalers sharks and caught this lucky sight! 🦈#datascience #research #shark


Bull shark (Carcharhinus leucas) seen in Jupiter, FL on October 31, 2021. #sharkPulse Photo by John Borys 🌊

Tag us in your #shark sightings to help us track global wild shark populations. 🦈

#datascience #conservation #research #science

Puffadder Shyshark (Haploblepharus edwardsii) seen in Cape Town, South Africa in August 2019. Observed by dozylocal on iNaturalist #sharkPulse 🌊
#datascience #shark #research

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Sharks are among the most endangered marine animals, and fishing for their fins is a leading driver of global shark declines.
Tracking Fisheries overlap with marine predators like this Salmon Shark (Photo: Scot Anderson, TOPP)
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