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Tristan Shonat


Marine & Freshwater Aquaculture Research Program

Today's Research for Tomorrow's Oceans



Tristan joined Mote as an intern in 2020 after graduating from Eckerd College with a B.S. in Marine Science. As an undergraduate, she gained experience in aquaculture for her undergraduate thesis focusing on the artificial propagation of the Pacific lamprey. After a year as a Mote intern, she developed a master’s project focusing on larval snook development, specifically in understanding swim bladder inflation and morphology. She then spent the next two years as a graduate student at Mote. She completed her M.S. in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences from the University of Florida in 2023. That same year she joined Mote as an Aquaculture Technician. Her primary job is to help care for the various recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) and animals at Mote’s 200-acre Aquaculture Research Park while assisting in a wide range of research projects. Her main projects focus on developing husbandry protocols and larval rearing for both marine finfish and crustaceans. During her time at Mote she has developed a wide range of knowledge including live feeds culture, larval rearing, juvenile production and grow out, broodstock maturation, histology, system maintenance, design and building, water chemistries, and fish tagging for stock enhancement. She has worked with species such as the common snook, red drum, almaco jack, Florida pompano, and Florida stone crab.


M.S. Fisheries and Aquatic Science, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL

B.S. Marine Science (Biology Track), Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, FL
Minors: Applied Mathematics, Environmental Studies, Chemistry