Darren Ward, Ph.D.

Dr. Darren Ward
(707) 826-3344
WDFS, Rm 148

I do research in basic and applied freshwater ecology. My research focuses on conservation ecology of Pacific salmon, with specific interests in life history diversity, mechanisms of population regulation, predator/prey interactions, and using mercury and other elemental tracers to study fish bioenergetics. Most of my research has a strong field work component because that's the fun part of fisheries biology!


B.S. in Fisheries, 1998, Utah State University
M.S. in Fisheries, 2002, University of Minnesota
Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, 2007, Dartmouth College

Courses Taught

FISH 320 Limnology
FISH 434 Ecology of Freshwater Fish
FISH 476 Ecology of Running Waters


  • Alvarez, J.S.* and D.M. Ward. 2019. Predation on wild and hatchery salmon by non-native brown trout (Salmo trutta) in the Trinity River, California. Ecology of Freshwater fish 28:573-585.

  • Cochran, S.M.* and D.M. Ward. 2019. Comparing abundance-based and tag-based estimates of coho salmon marine survival. Fisheries Management and Ecology 26:165-171.

  • Roddam, M.* and D.M. Ward. 2017. Life history differences of juvenile Chinook salmon across rearing locations in the Shasta River, California. Ecology of Freshwater Fish 26:150-159

  • Vazquez, R.*, D.M. Ward, and A. Sepulveda. 2016. Does water chemistry limit the distribution of New Zealand mud snails in Redwood National Park? Biological Invasions 18:1523-1531.

  • Rebenack, J.J.*, S. Ricker, C. Anderson, M. Wallace, and D.M. Ward. 2015. Early emigration of juvenile coho salmon: implications for population monitoring. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 144:163-172.

  • Dijkstra, J.A., K.L. Buckman, D.M. Ward, D.W. Evans, M. Dionne, and C.Y. Chen.  2013.  Experimental and natural warming elevates mercury concentrations in estuarine fish.  PLOS ONE 8:e58401

  • Ward, D.M., K.H. Nislow, and C.L. Folt. 2012. Do low-mercury terrestrial resources subsidize low-mercury growth of stream fish? PLOS ONE 7: e49582.

  • Ward, D. M., K. H. Nislow, and C. L. Folt 2011. Seasonal shift in the effects of predators on juvenile Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) energetics. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 68:2080-2089.

  • Ward, D. M. and Hvidsten, N. A. 2010. Predation: Compensation and Context Dependence, in Atlantic Salmon Ecology (eds Ø. Aas, S. Einum, A. Klemetsen and J. Skurdal), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. 
    DOI: 10.1002/9781444327755.ch8