University of South Carolina College of Arts & Sciences Marine Science Program School of the Earth, Ocean and Environment



Marine Science Program University of South Carolina 712 Main Street, PSC 108, Columbia, SC 29208

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Griffen, Blaine

McCausland Faculty Fellow

Assistant Professor, Marine Science Program and Biological Sciences

Ph.D. University of New Hampshire. 2007.

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EWS 615



I study the responses of natural systems to human impacts such as species invasion, habitat destruction, fishing pressure, etc. I am particularly interested in how these activities influence biodiversity within species (i.e., the diversity of functional traits seen within species). The overarching goal of my research is to improve our ability to predict the responses of populations and communities to future human impacts. I generally take a bottom up mechanistic approach, determining how behavior, physiology, and morphology facilitate or constrain the responses of individuals to environmental change, and how those individual level responses then scale up to establish patterns and processes at the population and community levels.  I do this using a variety of approaches, including field observations, field and laboratory experiments, physiological measurements, and computer simulation modeling.

While addressing questions of environmental change described above, my research simultaneously provides insight into fundamental aspects of organismal biology and physiology and into consumer foraging that is central to all ecological communities. Finally, my research also addresses areas where results can be applied to enhance management and conservation efforts.

Recent Publications:

(*denotes student coauthor)

*Riley ME, *Vogel M, Griffen BD (In press) Fitness-associated consequences of an omnivorous diet for the mangrove tree crab Aratus pisonii. Aquatic Biology

Griffen BD (In press) Linking individual diet and fecundity in an omnivorous marine consumer. Oecologia

Drake JM, Griffen BD (2013) Experimental demonstration of accelerated extinction in source-sink metapopulations. Ecology and Evolution 3:3369-3378

*Toscano BJ, Griffen BD (2013) Predator size interacts with habitat structure to determine the allometric scaling of the functional response. Oikos 122:454-462

Griffen BD, *Toscano B, *Gatto J (2012) The role of intraspecific trait variation in mediating indirect interactions. Ecology 93:1935-1943

*Decker RA, Griffen BD (2012) Correlating context-specific boldness and physiological condition of female sand fiddler crabs (Uca pugilator). Journal of Ethology

Griffen BD, Altman I, *Bess BM, *Hurley J, *Penfield A (2012) The role of foraging in the success of invasive species. Biological Invasions 14:2545-2558

*Toscano BJ, Griffen BD (2012) Predatory crab size diversity and bivalve consumption in oyster reefs. Marine Ecology Progress Series 445:65-74

*Repetto M, Griffen BD (2012) Physiological consequences of parasite infection in the burrowing mud shrimp Upogebia pugettensis, a widespread ecosystem engineer. Marine and Freshwater Research 63:60-67


Courses Taught:

MSCI 311: Biology of Marine Organisms

MSCI 510/BIOL 510: Invertebrate Zoology

MSCI 538/BIOL 538: Behavior of Marine Organisms