Hey there. Welcome to my site.

I’m a recent Ph.D. graduate from the University of Washington School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences. Now I’m a NMFS contractor at the NWFSC. My dissertation focused on the nearshore ecology of fish. Much of this work examined how shoreline modifications (e.g., seawalls, piers) affect fish, especially juvenile salmon. This research informed the world’s first major effort to rehabilitate fish habitat along an urban waterfront in downtown Seattle, Washington.

More broadly, many shallow ecosystems produce fish that are culturally, ecologically, and economically valuable, and many shorelines are modified by people. By understanding how shoreline modifications affect fish ecology, we can conserve and rehabilitate shorelines that support functional fish habitats, even within constraints of human use.

I created this website to summarize the findings and applications of my dissertation for a non-technical audience. Folks that would like more detailed information (e.g., statistics, caveats) can check out my publications listed following their summaries.

If you are interested in reading publications that describe fish ecology along modified shorelines, the following article might be a good start. It summarizes the current literature and discusses how we might build waterfronts that benefit fish even along highly modified shorelines:

Munsch, S. H., Cordell, J. R., & Toft, J. D. (2017). Effects of shoreline armouring and overwater structures on coastal and estuarine fish: opportunities for habitat improvement. Journal of Applied Ecology.

I’m also on Twitter @StuMunsch (https://twitter.com/StuMunsch).



I’m a Ph.D. graduate from the University of Washington School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences. I worked in the Wetland Ecosystem Team on shallow water fish ecology, and much of my research focused on effects of shoreline modifications on fish habitat. Prior to earning my Ph.D., I earned a B.S. in Biology from Gonzaga University, interned with US Naval Facilities Engineering Command and the Hood Canal Salmon Enhancement Group, and completed a research apprenticeship at Friday Harbor Laboratories. When I’m not working, I enjoy playing soccer, snowboarding, and running the occasional marathon.


This is a contact page with some basic contact information and a contact form.