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Dr. Ronald Keith O'Dor (Chair, Biology, Dalhousie)

Ron O'Dor joined Dalhousie University in 1973, became a Professor in 1983 and has held administrative posts including Director of the Marine Biology Programme, Director of the Aquatron Laboratory's marine research facilities and Chair of Biology. After an A.A. from El Camino College in Los Angeles, focused on chemistry and engineering, he completed an AB
in Biochemistry at the University of California, Berkeley. His Ph.D. research in Physiology at the University of British Columbia led to the discovery of the osteoporosis treatment, salmon calcitonin, and an interest in marine biology. Characterization of octopus gonadotropin and its role in cephalopod reproductive biology was the goal of his post-doctoral research at Cambridge University and the Stazione Zoologica, Naples, as well as his introduction to cephalopods.

His career as a biologist has focused primarily on cephalopods. Building on mesocosm and field studies of the life history of the Atlantic squid Illex illecebrosus, the target of a major fishery, he created a new approach to in situ marine bioenergetics using telemetered jet pressures. Optimizing this telemetry approach required development of the technology for radio-acoustic positioning telemetry (RAPT), which has also found wide application in monitoring the spatial requirements of endangered species and in underwater surveys of both benthic organisms and human artifacts. With students and collaborators, he has published extensively on the exercise physiology, behaviour and bioenergetics of cephalopods, including octopuses, cuttlefishes, squids and the living fossil, Nautilus. His research has also extended to other mollusks, particularly commercial and aquaculture species such as oysters, mussels and scallops. His work always combines the fields of biology and engineering. He is also involved in studies concerning non-molluscs, including lobsters, snow crabs, horseshoe crabs and fishes, which occur in conservation areas of Australia, the Bahamas, Canada, Japan, and New Zealand. He is currently involved in a series of projects linked to the Sloan Foundation's global Census of Marine Life, ranging from CephBase, a database within the Ocean Biogeographic Information System to telemetering data from the Pacific jumbo squid, Dosidicus gigas, as part of the world's first multi-trophic level tracking project.

Key words: cephalopods, endangered species, benthos, shellfish, crabs, lobster, conservation, Pacific jumbo squid

For further information, please email Ron O'Dor or contact him at the address below.

Ron O'Dor
Biology Department
Dalhousie University
Halifax, NS
Phone 1-902-494-2357
Fax 1-902-494-3736

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