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About Anya

Photo of Anya, the author

My name is Anya Dunham. I am a research scientist and a mom of three.

I have a PhD in Biology and over 20 years of experience studying and writing about ecology. I have published over 35 papers in academic journals, spoken about my research on radio and television, and taught university courses on study design.

One of my strengths, in work and in life, is connecting seemingly unconnected pieces of knowledge.

Scientific research

Most of my research projects in marine ecology focused on figuring out what  animals need to thrive at various life stages, and especially when they are young.

For example:

  • For my MSc and PhD projects I investigated how baby king crabs feed and grow, and then developed methods to raise them in the lab so they can be released into the ocean to rebuild wild populations depleted by overfishing.
  • For postdoctoral work, I ran a series of lab experiments to determine the range of environmental conditions larval tunicates can live in. This research helped predict how much invasive tunicates might spread along the Pacific Coast of North America.
  • Since then I led a variety of research projects developing methods for raising baby clams in the lab and in the field; improving clam aquaculture methods; and preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species.
  • Most recently my research has focused on glass sponge reefs (unique habitats built by glass sponges) and on Marine Protected Areas in the Pacific Ocean.

You can find out more about my research on my ResearchGate page and my Scientist Profile page. 


I am a mom to three amazing little people who are keeping me on my toes and giving me reasons to grow and learn every day.

When I have some extra time, I enjoy sewing children's clothes and working on our ever-evolving food garden.

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