Jessica Norstog


2016 - Present: Ph.D. in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, University of Massachusetts Amherst,                      Amherst, MA

2015: B.S. in Marine Biology, University of New Haven, West Haven, CT
2015: B.S. in Environmental Sciences, University of New Haven, West Haven, CT

Research Career

As an undergraduate, I worked in the Kelly Lab - Ecophysiology of Fish at the University of New Haven for three years. During that time, I completed three research projects focused on osmoregulation and associated metabolic costs to local estuarine fishes. In summer 2012, I completed a UNH Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF), which investigated the metabolic costs of osmoregulation in juvenile hogchokers. I created custom respirometers to measure resting metabolic rates in the flatfish after exposure to 0 ppt (control), 10 ppt (isosmotic conditions), and 30 ppt (seawater challenge). As a senior honors student, I continued my work in metabolic costs of osmoregulation. My thesis investigated the metabolic costs associated with an exposure to hyperosmotic conditions in fourspine stickleback (Apeltes quadracus), a local esturine fish of the Quinnipiac River, CT. 


Additionally, I was awarded the NOAA Ernest F. Hollings Undergraduate Scholarship, which included a summer internship at a NOAA facility. Over the summer of 2013, I conducted research with Dr. Christopher Chambers at the NOAA James J. Howard Laboratory, Sandy Hook, NJ. My project focused on the effects of climate change in the Hudson River on sensitive early life-stages of shortnose sturgeon. 

Over the year between undergraduate and graduate school, I worked in the Integrative Systems Biology Lab, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Saudi Arabia as a research technician for Dr. Celia Schunter and Dr. Timothy Ravasi. While I was there, I worked on a project that investigated the population genetics of Arabian killifish (Aphanius dispar), which lived in landlocked freshwater desert ponds and in the hyperosmotic environment of the Red Sea. 



Norstog, JL, McCormick, SD, and Kelly, JK. In progress. Metabolic costs associated with an exposure to hyperosmotic conditions in Apeltes quadracus.

Schunter, C, Bonzi, LC, Norstog, JL, Berumen, ML, Lopes, YA, Parkes, SD, McCabe, MF, Ravasi, T. In progress. Washed out to sea: Desert fish populations overcome hydrological constraints via ecological adaptation.


Upcoming: SEB Seville, July 2019 

FIBES II Conference and Exhibition Centre, Seville, Spain 
Oral presentation: Seawater tolerance and feeding behavior in landlocked and anadromous populations of Sea Lamprey 

Connecticut River Atlantic Salmon Commission Technical Committee Meeting, March 2019
US Fish & Wildlife, Hadley, MA 
Oral Presentation: Salinity tolerance in anadromous and landlocked Sea Lamprey 

13th International Congress on the Biology of Fish, July 2018
University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada 
Poster Presentation: Seawater tolerance in landlocked and anadromous populations of Sea Lamprey 

Northeast Regional Honors Council Annual Conference: Battlefields of Change, April 2015 

Gettysburg, PA 
Poster presentation: The metabolic costs of osmoregulation in a euryhaline fish, hogchoker (Trinectes maculates

Southern New England Chapter, American Fisheries Society: 2015 Winter Meeting, January 2015 
University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, RI 
Poster Presentation: The metabolic costs of osmoregulation in a euryhaline fish, hogchoker (Trinectes maculates
Award: Best Student Poster 

Ernest F. Hollings Undergraduate Research Symposium, August 2014 

NOAA Headquarters, Silver Spring, MD 
Oral Presentation: Effects of climate change in the Hudson River on sensitive early life-stages of shortnose sturgeon