Dr. John Dower

Dr. John Dower
Office: BWC A327
Area of expertise

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology | Environmental Biology | Marine Science

Areas of research focus

  • Biological oceanography and marine ecology
  • Factors affecting the production, growth and survival of zooplankton and larval fish
  • Marine food webs
  • Effects of ocean climate on marine ecosystems

Research in Dr. Dower's lab is primarily field based, taking place mainly in coastal British Columbia and the open North Pacific.His lab works collaboratively with researchers at Fisheries and Oceans Canada to explore how variations in bottom-up forcing drive seasonal and interannual variations in the amount and type of zooplankton that are produced.

Zooplankton represent the key link in transferring energy from the base of marine food chains to higher trophic levels - including larval and juvenile fish, seabirds, and mammals.

Dower’s research also seeks to understand how changes in ocean climate (e.g. increasing temperatures and ocean acidification) may affect the structure and productivity of marine ecosystems in the future.

Fisheries Oceanography and Zooplankton Ecology Laboratory 

  • EOS 110 - Oceans and Atmosphere
  • BIOL 248 - Organismal Biology

Guan L, Dower JF, Pepin P and McKinnell SM (2018) Characterizing spatial structures of larval fish assemblages at multiple scales in relation to environmental heterogeneity in the Strait of Georgia (British Columbia, Canada). Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Science. https://doi.org/10.1139/cjfas-2017-0194

Suchy KD, Dower JF, Varela DE, Lagunas MG (2016) Interannual variability in the relationship between /in situ/ primary productivity and somatic crustacean productivity in a temperate fjord. Marine Ecology Progress Series 545: 91–108.

Guan L, Dower JF, McKinnell SM, Pepin P, Pakhomov EA and Hunt BP (2015). A comparison of spring larval fish assemblages in the Strait of Georgia (British Columbia, Canada) between the early-1980s and late-2000s. Progress in Oceanography 138A: 45-57.

Pepin P, Robert D, Bouchard C, Dower JF, Falardeau M, Fortier L, Jenkins GP, Levesque K, Llopiz JK, Meekan MG, Murphy HM, Ringuette M, Sirois P and Sponaugle S (2015) Once upon a larva: revisiting the relationship between feeding success and growth in fish larvae. ICES Journal of Marine Science 72: 359-373.

Robert D, Pepin P, Dower JF and Fortier L (2014) Individual growth history of larval Atlantic mackerel is reflected in daily condition indices. ICES Journal of Marine Science 71:1001-1009.