Professor Tom Quinn Public Lecture about Salmon Today

The School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences autumn quarter seminar is a chance for the public to learn about current issues and research through weekly lectures each Thursday. Subscribe to the SAFS events calendar for information about other lectures through the quarter.

Pink Salmon in the Seton River
Aaron Dufault
photo by: Aaron Dufault

More than just fillets on the grill: Salmon and trout as models of evolutionary ecology.


Salmon, trout, and their relatives are important as objects of commercial, recreational, and subsistence fisheries and aquaculture, and they also play vital roles in the marine and freshwater ecosystems that they occupy during their lives. Emphasis on these aspects of salmonids can cause us to overlook what fascinating organisms they are. Those studying evolutionary ecology in fishes often work on guppies, sticklebacks, and cichlids yet salmonids have been at the forefront of many important discoveries. This presentation will provide examples of early or seminal scientific papers on salmonids, highlighting some of the complexities and mysteries of their evolutionary ecology. It will conclude with comments on the importance of these concepts for salmon conservation.


Tom Quinn
Tom Quinn

Thomas Quinn grew up in New York City and received a B.A. in Biology at Swarthmore College in 1976 and a Ph.D. in Fisheries from the University of Washington in 1981 for work on magnetic field detection and orientation by juvenile sockeye salmon. He spent four years as a post-doc with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Canada lab in Nanaimo, B.C., working with Kees Groot on various salmon behavior projects before returning to the UW to teach in 1986. His research addresses basic and applied aspects of the behavior, ecology, evolution, and conservation of salmon and trout and their ecosystems.