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Lesley Thorne

thorneAssistant Professor

Ph.D., 2010, Duke University

bio-physical and trophic interactions in marine ecology; application of spatial analysis and landscape ecology techniques to marine conservation


Google Scholar Profile

Thorne Lab Website




Research Interests

I am interested in bio-physical and trophic interactions in marine ecology and the application of spatial analysis and landscape ecology techniques to marine conservation. Specifically, my research interests focus on the importance of local oceanographic features and associated prey distributions to the foraging habitat of marine predators. Ongoing research projects include studies investigating the mechanics of oceanographic features relative to foraging seabirds and their prey in both Onslow Bay, North Carolina and in the Bay of Fundy, Canada; research projects integrating in situ and remotely sensed data to investigate the cetacean habitat use in relation to physical and oceanographic habitat factors in the South Atlantic Bight; and a habitat modeling study examining the resting habitat of spinner dolphins in Hawaii.


Thorne, L.H., E.L. Hazen, S.J. Bograd, D.G. Foley, M.G. Connors, M.A. Kappes, H.M. Kim, Y.Tremblay, D.P. Costa and S.A. Shaffer Sympatric North Pacific albatross species show contrasting responses to climate variability. In review at Glob Change Biol.

Foley, C.F., M. Lynch, L.H. Thorne, H.J. Lynch. Listing foreign species under the Endangered Species Act: Who, how, why, and to what end? In review at Front Ecol Environ.

Lynch, M., C.F. Foley, L.H. Thorne, and H.J. Lynch. Are we following best practices in Antarctic policy with respect to biological data? In review at Antarct Sci.

Belkin, I.M., Hunt, G.L., Hazen, E.L., Zamon, J.E., Schick, R.S., Prieto, R., Brodziak, J., Teo, S.L., Thorne, L.H., Bailey, H., Sachihiko, I., Munk, P., Musyl, M.K., Willis, J.K., and W. Zhang (2014) Fronts, fish and predators. Deep-Sea Res. Pt. II. 107: 1-2.

Thorne, L.H. and A.J. Read (2013) Fine-scale biophysical interactions drive prey availability at a migratory stopover site for Phalaropusspp. in the Bay of Fundy, Canada. Mar Ecol Prog Ser. 487: 261-273.

Waples, D.M., L.H. Thorne, L.W. Williams, E.K. Burke, K.W. Urian and A.J. Read (2013) A field test of acoustic deterrent devices used to reduce interactions between bottlenose dolphins and a coastal gillnet fishery in North Carolina, USA. Biol Conserv. 157: 163-171.

Thorne, L.H., D.W. Johnston, D.L. Urban, R.W. Baird, S. Yin, S. Rickards, M.H. Deakos, A.A. Pack and M.C. Hill (2012) Predictive modeling of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands: implications for management. PLoS ONE. 7(8): e43167.

Dunn, D.C., K. Stewart, R.K. Bjorkland, M. Haughton, S. Singh-Rentond, R. Lewison, L.H. Thorne and P.N. Halpin (2009) A regional analysis of coastal and domestic fishing effort in the wider Caribbean. Fish Res. 102(1-2): 60-68.

Nowacek, D.P., L.H. Thorne, D.W. Johnston and P. L. Tyack (2007) Responses of cetaceans to anthropogenic noise: an update and evaluation of potential physiological consequences. Mam Rev 37(2): 81-115.

Johnston D.W., L.H. Thorne and A.J. Read (2005) Fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) and minke whales (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) exploit a tidally-driven island wake ecosystem in the Bay of Fundy. Mar Ecol Prog Ser. 305: 287-295.

Thorne, L.H. and A.J. Read (In preparation) Developing spatial predictions of the at-sea habitat of black-capped petrels (Pterodrama hasitata) using generalized additive models.

Thorne, L.H., Read, A.J., H.J. Foley and R.W. Baird (In preparation) Living on the edge: short- finned pilot whales (Globicephala macrorhynchus) exploit steep bathymetric gradients in the Northwest Atlantic.

Seasons Greetings!

Welcome!Welcome to SoMAS! Many opportunities await you here. 2017 will be an exciting year to enter a career in marine and atmospheric sciences. Read More

Vax to Flax 2016

The 2016 Vax to Flax Run was held on Saturday April 30th on a beautiful sunny day. The race course followed the Vax-to-Vax format (seen on the right) where the race starts at SoMAS and travels clockwise around Circle Drive to return back to SoMAS. Seven faculty and post docs raced against eleven students. As has been the recent tradition, the faculty times overall beat the student times.

Flax to Vax 2015

The Annual SoMAS tradition that puts Students against Faculty took place on Saturday, April 25th. The course this year followed the same path as last year, starting at SoMAS (former home of the Vax computer system) and circling around campus around Circle Drive to...

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