Colleen Bove
Colleen Bove

Colleen Bove

“Our research lab studies organismal and ecosystem responses to global change. Our multidisciplinary research combines laboratory techniques, field ecology, and computational tools to evaluate anthropogenic impacts on marine and freshwater communities. Specifically, we are interested in the following themes: 1) ecophysiology of marine invertebrates, 2) anthropogenetic contaminants (i.e., microplastics), and 3) species distributions and ecology.”

Dr. Colleen Bove received her B.S. in Marine Biology from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and her Ph.D. in Ecology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Bove worked as a postdoctoral scholar at Boston University where she conducted marine invertebrate research and taught several courses. She joined the Biology Department at Ursinus College in 2023.

Dr. Bove’s lab explores the causes and consequences of environmental stress in aquatic ecosystems. Our expertise encompasses multiple levels of biological organization including molecular and physiological lab assessments, aquarium-based experiments, and field expeditions. By pairing experimental approaches with computer-based geospatial techniques, we can better understand organismal responses within historical and projected rates of environmental changes.

Current research projects in the lab include coral microbial community composition across the Caribbean, physiology of marine invertebrates (American slipper snail, Eastern Oysters) under climate change, and microplastic pollution in the Schuylkill River. Along with global change and marine ecology research, I am very passionate about open and reproducible science through public posting of R code, data, and protocols on GitHub and Zenodo.




B.S. Marine Biology – University of North Carolina at Wilmington

Ph.D. Ecology – University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


  • Ecology and Evolution
  • Global Change Ecology
  • Marine Biology
  • Marine Invertebrate Zoology


Research Interests

Marine Ecology and Physiology

  • Climate change and marine invertebrates
  • Tropical and temperate coral ecology
  • Physiological response to environmental change

Recent Work

Bove CB, Ingersoll MV, Davies SW. Help Me, Symbionts, You’re My Only Hope: Approaches to Accelerate Our Understanding of Coral Holobiont Interactions. 2022. Integrative and Comparative Biology. doi: 10.1093/icb/icac141

Bove CB, Davies SW, Ries JB, Umbanhowar J, Thomasson BC, Farquhar EB, McCoppin JA, Castillo KD. Global change differentially modulates Caribbean coral physiology. 2022. PLOS ONE 17(9). doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0273897

Brandt M, Silva-Romero I, Fernández-Garnica D, Qgudo-Adriani E, Bove CB, Bruno JF. Top-Down and Bottom-Up Control in the Galápagos Upwelling System. 2022. Frontiers in Marine Science, 7:1-8. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2022.845635

Bove CB, Mudge L, Bruno JF. A century of warming on Caribbean reefs. 2022. PLOS Climate 1(3): e0000002. doi: 10.1371/journal.pclm.0000002