Jennifer Hoey

Jennifer Hoey

NSF-OCE Postdoctoral Fellow

California Academy of Sciences

About me

I am an ecologist and evolutionary biologist working with Pim Bongaerts in the Reefscape Genomics Lab as a postdoctoral fellow at the California Academy of Sciences. My research focuses on how microevolutionary forces shape patterns of genetic diversity across space and through time, and how the processes inferred from past and current genomic patterns might influence evolutionary potential in a changing world. I use population genomics, natural history collections, computation and fisheries datasets to understand the past, present and future of aquatic populations. I am also passionate about science communication, and I serve on the Governing Council of the National Network for Ocean & Climate Change Interpretation (NNOCCI).

As a postdoctoral fellow, I am examining hybridization and adaptation across reef depth in a Caribbean coral community.

I earned my PhD under the guidance of Malin Pinsky as part of the Graduate Program of Ecology & Evolution at Rutgers University. Prior to pursuing a PhD, I worked and volunteered for several San Francisco Bay Area non-profits to engage youth and community members in science education and stewardship. I also assisted with understanding eco-evo feedback interactions in Trinidadian guppies and the monitoring and restoration of coho salmon populations in northern California. I received my Bachelor’s degree from the Department of Integrative Biology at UC Berkeley.


Bonanno, A., M. Ennes, J.A. Hoey, E. Moberg, S.-M. Nelson, N. Pletcher, and R.L. Tanner. 2021. Empowering hope-based climate change communication techniques for the Gulf of Maine. Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene 9 (1): 00051.

Clark, R.D., M.L. Aardema, P. Andolfatto, P.H. Barber, A. Hattori, J.A. Hoey, H.R. Montes Jr., and M.L. Pinsky. Genomic signatures of spatially divergent selection at clownfish range margins. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 288: 20210407.

Hoey, J.A., F.J. Fodrie, Q.A. Walker, E.J. Hilton, G.T. Kellison, T.E. Targett, J.C. Taylor, K.W. Able, and M.L. Pinsky. 2020. Using multiple natural tags provides evidence for extensive larval dispersal across space and through time in summer flounder. Molecular Ecology 29:1421–1435.

Hoey, J.A. and M.L. Pinsky. 2018. Genomic signatures of environmental selection despite near panmixia in summer flounder. Evolutionary Applications 11(9): 1732-1747.

Hettinger, A., E. Sanford, T.M. Hill, A.D. Russell, K.N.S. Sato, J. Hoey, M. Forsch, H.N. Page, and B. Gaylord. 2012. Persistent carry-over effects of planktonic exposure to ocean acidification in the Olympia oyster. Ecology 93(12): 2758-2768.


The genomic extent of hybridization and adaptation in Madracis spp. along a depth gradient

Madracis spp. are a group of corals in the Caribbean that hybridize with each other, but the degree to which this is evident across the genome and the phenotypic and fitness consequences of this hybridization are not well understood. I am using underwater surveys, population genomics, and imaging techniques to characterize the extent of hybridization across the genome, identify potentially adaptive loci associated with environmental characteristics in the reef, and determine if hybridization and introgression in Madracis confer a fitness advantage.

Estimating genetic diversity and effective population size of an overfished species

The demographic history of a population is important for conservation and evolution, but it is unknown for many populations. I am using SNP genotypes from archived collections of larval summer flounder (Paralichthys dentatus, n = 280) from three cohorts to examine how contemporary effective population size and genetic diversity responded to changes in fishing intensity over time.


Quantifying performance curves across a thermal gradient

I am working with collaborators at the NOAA Sandy Hook Labratory in New Jersey to test for divergent thermal tolerance phenotypes in summer flounder larvae from either end of the species range, building from the genomic evidence of divergent selection that I previously found. We are quantifying the thermal performance curve of summer flounder by rearing eggs and larvae across a 20ºC thermal gradient.

Science Outreach



I am part of the Science Partnership Committee within the National Network for Ocean and Climate Change Interpretation (NNOCCI). I was previously a Science Fellow as part of the inaugural Northeast Study Circle in 2017. NNOCCI is a collaboration between informal educators, climate & ocean scientists and communication experts who work together to effectively frame and communicate ocean and climate change science. For useful tools, ideas and events related to communicating ocean and climate change science, check out the Climate Interpreter website.

California Academy of Sciences

Before joining the Pinsky Lab, I volunteered as a SCUBA diver at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, CA. As one of the divers in the daily Coral Reef Dive Shows, I used a full-face mask to talk to visitors about the great diversity of coral reefs, the impacts of ocean acidification on the world’s reefs and share little-known facts about these amazing ecosystems with the Bay Area community. For a live video feed of the Coral Reef Tank at the California Academy of Sciences, please click here (dive shows are at 11:30am and 2:30pm Pacific Time!).