J. Rudi Strickler

Shaw Distinguished Professor Emeritus
Biological Sciences


  • Dr. sc. nat. (PhD), Abt. X Naturwissenschaften Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland, 1969
  • Dipl. Natw. (MS), Abt. X Naturwissenschaften, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland, 1965

Research Interests

J. Rudi Strickler’s work in imaging microscopic aquatic zooplankters as they navigate and manipulate their watery habitats has reversed previous scholarship that asserted the tiny creatures survived by chance encounters.

His research proved the tiny transparent relatives of shrimp, which populate both the sea and freshwater by the sextillions, act selectively in choosing their food, avoiding predators, and successfully pursuing a mate. It has redirected the course of inquiry in the field.

Strickler, a UWM and Shaw Distinguished Professor of biological sciences, has accomplished much of the work with the aid of high-speed video with optical systems he often has designed himself. His savvy use of laser beams, animated GIFs files and high-magnification equipment has allowed him to track and compare the behavior of copepods, the main constituent of zooplankton.

In 2000, the National Science Foundation recognized Strickler in its bound report, “50 Years of Ocean Discovery,” citing his research on zooplankton as one of four landmark achievements in biological oceanography. Nine years later, he was recognized by the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO) with the John Martin Award for research published in 1981 with Mimi Koehl, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. The award is reserved for papers at least 10 years old that have led to fundamental shifts in subsequent research.

Selected Publications

Tanaka M, Genin A., Lopes RM, Strickler JR, Yamazaki H. 2019. “Biased measurements by stationary turbidity‐fluorescence instruments due to phototactic zooplankton behavior.” Limnology & Oceanography: Methods doi.org/10.1002/lom3.10328.

Fashingbauer MC, Tuttle LJ, Robinson HE, Strickler JR, Hartline DK, Lenz PH. 2019. “Predatory posture and performance in a precocious larval fish targeting evasive copepods.” Journal of Experimental Biology 222, jeb191411.doi:10.1242/jeb.191411.​

Uttieri M, Nihongi A, Hinow P, Motschman J, Jiang H, Alcaraz M, Strickler JR. 2019. “Copepod manipulation of oil droplet size distribution.” Scientific Reports 9: 547.​

Robinson HE, J. Strickler JR, Henderson MJ, Hartline DK, Lenz PH. 2019. “Predation strategies of larval clownfish capturing evasive copepod prey.” Marine Ecology Progress Series 614: 125-146.​

Tuttle LJ, Robinson HE, Takagi D, Strickler JR, Lenz PH, Hartline DK. 2019. Going with the flow: hydrodynamic cues trigger directed escapes from a stalking predator. Journal of The Royal Society Interface 16: 20180776.

Hinow, P., Strickler, J. R. and Yen, J. 2017. “Olfaction in a viscous environment: The ‘color’ of sexual smells in Temora longicornis.” The Science of Nature (2017) 104: 46. doi:10.1007/s00114-017-1465-5.

Buskey, E. J., Strickler, J. R., Bradley, C. J., Hartline, D.K. and Lenz, P. H. 2017. “Escapes in copepods: comparison between myelinate and amyelinate species.” Journal of Experimental Biology 220: 754-758; doi: 10.1242/jeb.148304

Gerritsen, J. and J.R. Strickler. 1977. “Encounter probabilities and community structure in zooplankton: A mathematical model.” Journal of the Fisheries Research Board of Canada 34, 73-82.

Koehl, M.A.R. and J.R. Strickler. 1981. “Copepod feeding currents: Food capture at low Reynolds number.” Limnology and Oceanography 26, 1062-1073.​

Drenner, R.W., J.R. Strickler and W.J. O’Brien. 1978. “Capture probability: The role of zooplankter escape in the selective feeding of planktivorous fish.” Journal of the Fisheries Research Board of Canada 35, 1370-1373.​

Lovern, S.B., J.R. Strickler and R. Klaper. 2007. “Behavioral and Physiological Changes in Daphnia magna when Exposed to Nanoparticle Suspensions (Titanium Dioxide, Nano-C60, and C60HxC70Hx).” Journal of Environmental Science & Technology 41: 4465-4470​

Strickler, J.R. 1982. “Calanoid copepods, feeding currents, and the role of gravity.” Science 218, 158-160.