401 W. Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33606
Education: 2005 Florida State University, B.S.
2012 University of South Florida, Ph.D.
Courses Taught: Biodiversity, Biodiversity Lab
Michael Middlebrooks is a marine ecologist with an emphasis on photosynthetic kleptoplastic sea slugs. His research is particularly focused on how photosynthetic activity affects the behavior and ecological interactions for motile marine herbivores.
Professional and Community Activities: Middlebrooks has published several papers on the photosynthetic activity of the kleptoplastic sea slug Elysia clarki. This slug sequesters chloroplasts from the algae it feeds upon and uses the chloroplasts in order to photosynthesize. His work has combined field ecology with molecular biology, chromatography and fluorometry to examine the feeding relationships and photosynthetic capabilities of this organism. Additionally, Middlebrooks has also been involved in seagrass restoration studies in Tampa Bay, examining the long term effects of the restoration of Halodule wrightii.
Honors and Awards: University of South Florida Tharpe Fellowship, Lerner Grey Grant for Marine Research