Schery Umanzor

Schery Umanzor

Assistant Professor

Biological Oceanography
Marine Biology
Marine Ecology

College of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences
17101 Point Lena Loop Rd
Juneau, AK 99801


Center for Scientific Research and Higher Education of Ensenada (CICESE)
Ph.D. Marine Ecology



I completed my doctorate in marine ecology at CICESE, Mexico, in 2017, focusing on microscale-scale changes driven by intertidal macroalgae. My expertise includes macroalgal ecology, ecophysiology, and cultivation, as well as biological oceanography. I am leading a giant kelp reforestation project in Baja California, Mexico, funded by The Rufford Foundation. Prior to pursuing my PhD, I was a field technician on a Bill & Belinda Gates Foundation project awarded to FUNDEVI–University of Costa Rica for the cultivation of tropical seaweeds for human consumption, and lead investigator on another project funded by Grand Challenges, Canada, for the cultivation of land crops on floatation. More recently, I have been working on the isolation and cultivation of sugar kelp. I am also invested in measuring ecosystem services driven by open-water kelp farms.


Curriculum Vitae




Umanzor, S., S. Shin, C. Yarish, S. Augyte, and J.K. Kim. 2020. Exploratory evaluation of the effects of Kelpak® seaweed extract on cultivated kelp Saccharina spp. exposed to sublethal and lethal temperatures. Journal of the World Aquaculture Society 1–10.

Umanzor, S., M.M. Ramírez, J.M. Sandoval-Gil, J.A. Zertuche-González, and C. Yarish. 2020. Photoacclimation and photoprotection of juvenile sporophytes of Macrocystis pyrifera (Laminariales, Phaeophyceae) under high‐light conditions during short‐term shallow‐water cultivation. Journal of Phycology 56(2): 380–392.

Mao, X., S. Augyte, M. Huang, M.P. Hare, D. Bailey, S. Umanzor, M. Marty-Rivera, K.R. Robbins, C. Yarish, S. Lindell, and J.-L. Jannink. 2020. Population genetics of sugar kelp in the Northwest Atlantic region using genome-wide markers. bioRxiv 2020.04.21.050930.

Umanzor, S., L. Ladah, L.E. Calderon-Aguilera, and J.A. Zertuche-González. 2019. Testing the relative importance of intertidal seaweeds as ecosystem engineers across tidal heights. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 511:100–107.

Umanzor, S., L. Ladah, and J.A. Zertuche-González. 2018. Intertidal seaweeds modulate a contrasting response in understory seaweed and microphytobenthic early recruitment. Frontiers in Marine Science 5:296.

Umanzor, S., L. Ladah, and J.A. Zertuche-González. 2017. The influence of species, density, and diversity of macroalgal aggregations on microphytobenthic settlement. Journal of Phycology 53(5): 1060–1071.

Umanzor, S., L. Ladah, L.E. Calderon-Aguilera, and J.A. Zertuche-González. 2017. Intertidal macroalgae influence macroinvertebrate distribution across stress scenarios. Marine Ecology Progress Series 584:67–77.


  • Rocky shore ecology
  • Ecosystem engineering
  • Seaweed aquaculture
  • Seaweed physiology
  • Kelp forest ecology


Research Overview

As an experimental marine ecologist, my passion relies on quantifying how community-structuring organisms interact with the physical environment, and how these interactions translate to potential ecosystem services to coastal areas. Managing contemporary environmental needs while ensuring adequate management of natural resources is critical to withstand climate-change challenges. As such, my research focuses on using combined and multidisciplinary approaches to contributing to coastal management and adaptation.


Current research projects

  • Assessing kelp nutrient bioextraction capacity in aquaculture farms in the US with implications for conservation and management (MARINER Program, ARPA-e, Department of Energy)
  • Development of direct "seeding" approaches to attach kelp sporophytes onto grow-out substrates (MARINER Program, ARPA-e, Department of Energy)


Awards / Honors

  • Distinguished Alumni, CICESE



  • Marine Seaweed Biotechnology Lab, UCONN, Stamford. CT 06901


Links to Other Places