Joseph Bizzarro

Joseph Bizzarro

Adjunct Faculty

Department: Pacific Shark Research Center



phone: (831) 771-4438
office: 514 MLML Main Lab




My general areas of interest are marine ecology and ichthyology, and more specifically resource utilization, life history, and fisheries studies of demersal and benthic elasmobranchs (i.e., sharks, skates, and rays) and teleost groundfishes. I am especially interested in trophic ecology and spatial associations of marine fish assemblages, and have several such research projects underway or recently completed between the Bering Sea and Gulf of California. I also have considerable experience in seafloor mapping, collection and analysis of biological and physical data, and trophic and spatial analysis of groundfishes and benthic invertebrates. I enjoy collaborating with colleagues and pursuing interdisciplinary studies. I have especially valued my collaborations with marine geologists, as knowledge of the geologic conditions that create and maintain seafloor habitats for benthic fishes is fundamental to my research.


Research Interests:
  • Marine Ecology and Ichthyology
  • Resource utilization, life history, and fisheries studies of demersal and benthic elasmobranchs (i.e., sharks, skates, and rays) and teleost groundfishes
  • Trophic ecology and spatial associations of marine fish assemblages


Recent Publications: 
  • Dean, M.N., Bizzarro, J.J., Clark, B., Underwood, C.J., and Johanson, Z. 2017. Large batoid fishes frequently consume stingrays despite skeletal damage. Royal Society Open Science 4: 170674.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Carlisle, A.B., Smith, W.D., and Cortés, E. 2017. Trophic relationships, trohphodynamics, and ecological impacts of Northeast Pacific sharks, pp. 111–148. In: Advances in Marine Biology Vol. 77. Northeast Pacific shark biology, research, and conservation (Larson, S, and Lowry, D., eds.). Elsevier. Amsterdam, Netherlands.
  • Dick, E.J., Berger, A., Bizzarro, J., Bosley, K., Cope, J., Field, J., Glibert-Horvath, L., Grunloh, N., Ivens-Duran, M., Miller, R., Privitera-Johnson, K., and Rodomsky, B.T. 2017. The combined status of blue and deacon rockfishes in U.S. Waters off California and Oregon in 2017. Pacific Fishery Management Council, Portland, OR.
  • Carlisle, A.B., Litvin, S.Y., Madigan, D.J., Lyons, K., Bigman, J.S., Ibarra, M., and Bizzarro, J.J. 2017. Interactive effects of urea and lipid content confound stable isotope results in elasmobranch fishes. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 74: 419–428.
  • Kemper, J.M., Bizzarro, J.J., and Ebert, D.A. 2017. Dietary variability in two common Alaskan skates (Bathyraja interrupta and Raja rhina). Marine Biology 164: 52. 1–22.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Yoklavich, M.M., and Wakefield, W.W. 2017. Diet composition and foraging ecology of U.S. Pacific Coast groundfishes with applications for fisheries management. Environmental Biology of Fishes.  100: 375–393.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Peterson, A.N., Blaine, J.M., Balaban, J.P., Greene, H.G., and Summers, A.P. 2016. Burrowing behavior, habitat, and functional morphology of the Pacific Sand Lance (Ammodytes personatus). Fishery Bulletin 114: 445–460.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Broms, K.M., Logsdon, M.G., Yoklavich, M.M., Kuhnz, L.A., and Summers, A.P. 2014 Spatial segregation in eastern North Pacific skate assemblages. PLOS ONE 9: e109907.doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0109907.
  • Wetherbee, B.W., Cortés, E., and Bizzarro, J.J. 2012. Chapter 8: Food consumption and feeding habits, p. 239–264. Biology of sharks and their relatives (Carrier, J.C., Musick, J.A., and Heithaus, M.R., eds). CRC Press: New York, NY.
  • Brown, S.C., Bizzarro, J.J., Ebert, D.A., and Cailliet, G.M. 2012. Breaking with tradition: redefining measures for diet description with a case study of the Aleutian skate, Bathyraja aleutica (Gilbert 1896).  Environmental Biology of Fishes 95: 3–20.
  • Paig–Tran, E.W.M., Bizzarro, J.J., Strother, J.A., and Summers, A.P. 2011. Bottles as models: predicting the effects of varying swimming speed and morphology on size selectivity and filtering efficiency in fishes. Journal of Experimental Biology 214: 1643–1654.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Smith, W.D., Márquez–Farías, J.F., Tyminski, J., and Hueter, R.E. 2009. Temporal variation in the artisanal elasmobranch fishery of Sonora, Mexico. Fisheries Research 97: 103–117.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., and Vaughn, M.T. 2009. Aspects of the biology and species composition of skates (Rajiformes) off southeastern Alaska. Northwestern Naturalist. 90: 247–256.
  • Smith, W.D., Bizzarro, J.J., Richards, V.P., Nielsen, J., Márquez–Farías, J.F. and Shivji, M.S. 2009.    Divergence and dimorphism: the taxonomic status of Gymnura crebripunctata (Peters 1869) G. marmorata (Cooper 1864) in the eastern Pacific Ocean. Journal of Fish Biology. 75: 761–783.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Smith, W.D., Castillo–Géniz, J.L., Ocampo–Torres, A., Márquez–Farías, J.F., and Hueter, R.E. 2009. The seasonal importance of small coastal sharks and rays in the artisanal elasmobranch fishery of Sinaloa, Mexico. Pan–American Journal of Aquatic Sciences 4: 513–531.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Smith, W.D., Hueter, R.E., and Villavicencio–Garayzar, C.J. 2009. Activities and catch composition of artisanal elasmobranch fishing sites on the eastern coast of Baja California Sur, Mexico. Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences. 108:137–151.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., and Vaughn, M.T. 2008. First records of the whiteblotched skate, Bathyraja maculata, in the eastern Gulf of Alaska. Northwestern Naturalist 89: 193–197.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Robison, H.J., Rinewalt, C.S., and Ebert, D.A.  2007.  Comparative feeding ecology of four sympatric skate species off central California, USA. Environmental Biology of Fishes 80: 197–220.
  • Bizzarro, J.J., Smith, W.D., Márquez–Farías, J.F., and Hueter, R.E.  2007.  Artisanal fisheries and reproductive biology of the golden cownose ray, Rhinoptera steindachneri Evermann and Jenkins, 1891, in the northern Mexican Pacific. Fisheries Research 84: 137–146.
  • Ebert, D.A., and Bizzarro, J.J. 2007.  Standardized diet compositions and trophic levels of skates (Chondrichthyes: Rajiformes: Rajoidei).  Environmental Biology of Fishes 80: 221–237.

Ichthyology Lab