Dr. Robert Vadas Jr., Aquatic ecologist

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Habitat Program

Contact Details

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Habitat Program


I have received the following degrees: B.A. in zoology/botany (Ohio Wesleyan University), M.Sc. in stream-fish ecology (University of Maryland), and Ph.D. on fish instream-flow issues (Virginia Tech). I have since worked for 2 consulting companies in Alberta and have completed 2 postdoctoral projects in British Columbia and California on fish-habitat and other issues, with collective focus on riparian and instream-flow impacts to freshwater and estuarine ecosystems. I have recently worked as a state-agency biologist, including past estuarine fish-habitat work with the Florida Marine Research Institute and present freshwater (especially salmonid) work with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. My focus has been on hydrologic, habitat, and dietary needs of fishes, using field sampling, statistical analysis, and ecological synthesis. Formal instream-flow training includes a postgraduate course at Virginia Tech in stream-hydraulic modeling, USFWS courses on field and modeling techniques for PHABSIM, and USGS courses on 2-D hydrodynamic modeling and natural-resource negotiations.

My Washington work has included much field work (including snorkeling) on spawning and rearing habitat use of cutthroat and coho, laboratory gut analyses on coho and prickly sculpins, some spawning and rearing habitat work on Chinook salmon and bull trout, and spawning work on pink, chum, and sockeye salmon, steelhead, lampreys, and suckers. My British Columbia work, which had a riparian focus, included much field/lab work on habitat and food use by Chinook, steelhead, mountain whitefish, and various other stream fishes.

I’m also an active member of several environmental (e.g., estuarine) organizations in Olympia, often acting as a scientific advisor for them.

I also enjoy music and sports, including active roles, and regularly like to express my odd sense of humor.

-Bob Vadas, Jr., WDFW-Habitat