Cyril Michel, Graduate Student Researcher

Position/Affiliation: Assistant Project Scientist, University of California — Santa Cruz

Affiliated with the National Marine Fisheries Service, Southwest Fisheries Science Center, Biophysical Ecology Team

Contact Info:


  • 2010: M.A. Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz. Advisor: R Bruce Mcfarlane
  • 2006: B.S. Marine Biology from the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz

Research Interests: My work focuses on the survival and migrations of imperiled juvenile salmon in California. California is not only the southern extent of range distribution for most Pacific salmon species, meaning California's environment is often marginal for salmon preferences and tolerances, but furthermore, in the most populated U.S. State with thriving agribusiness (despite being a dry climate), salmonid populations are arguably more at odds with humankind and their impacts here than anywhere else. My particular research focuses are regarding what environmental conditions and habitat features seem to influence survival and migration of juvenile salmon, both directly and indirectly through the top-down controls of various native and introduced predator species.

Selected Publications:

Michel, C. J., J. M. Smith, N. J. Demetras, D. D. Huff, and S. A. Hayes. 2018. Non-native Fish Predator Density and Molecular-based Diet Estimates Provide Direct Evidence of Predation on Juvenile Salmon in the San Joaquin River, California. In press at San Francisco Estuary and Watershed Science.

Michel, C. J. 2018. Decoupling outmigration from marine survival indicates outsized influence of streamflow on cohort success for California's Chinook salmon populations. In press at Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences.

Sabal, M. C., C. J. Michel, J. M. Smith, A. Hampton, and S. A. Hayes. 2018. Seasonal Movement Patterns of Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis) in Their Nonnative Range. Estuaries and Coasts.

Cordoleani, F., J. Notch, A. McHuron, A. J. Ammann, and C. J. Michel. 2018. Movement and Survival of Wild Chinook Salmon Smolts from Butte Creek During Their Out-Migration to the Ocean: Comparison of a Dry Year versus a Wet Year. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 147:171-184.

Perry, R. W., A. C. Pope, J. G. Romine, P. L. Brandes, J. R. Burau, A. R. Blake, A. J. Ammann, and C. J. Michel. 2018. Flow-mediated effects on travel time, routing, and survival of juvenile Chinook salmon in a spatially complex, tidally forced river delta. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences: 1-16.

Cutter Jr., G. R., S. C. Manugian, J. Renfree, J. M. Smith, C. J. Michel, D. D. Huff, T. S. Sessions, B. E. Elliot, K. Stierhoff, S. Mau, D. Murfin, and D. A. Demer. 2017. Mobile Acoustic Sampling to Map Bathymetry and Quantify the Densities and Distributions of Salmonid Smolt Predators in the San Joaquin River. NOAA Technical Memorandum NOAA-TM-NMFS-SWFSC-575:134 pp.

Demetras, N. J., D. D. Huff, C. J. Michel, J. M. Smith, G. R. Cutter, S. A. Hayes, and S. T. Lindley. 2016. Development of underwater recorders to quantify predation of juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in a river environment. Fishery Bulletin:179-185.

Martin, B. T., R. M. Nisbet, A. Pike, C. J. Michel, and E. M. Danner. 2015. Sport science for salmon and other species: ecological consequences of metabolic power constraints. Ecology Letters 18:535-544.

Michel, C. J., A. J. Ammann, S. T. Lindley, P. T. Sandstrom, E. D. Chapman, M. J. Thomas, G. P. Singer, A. P. Klimley, and R. B. MacFarlane. 2015. Chinook salmon outmigration survival in wet and dry years in California's Sacramento River. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 72:1749-1759.

Chapman, E. D., A. R. Hearn, C. J. Michel, A. J. Ammann, S. T. Lindley, M. J. Thomas, P. T. Sandstrom, G. P. Singer, M. L. Peterson, R. B. MacFarlane, and A. P. Klimley. 2013. Diel movements of out-migrating Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) and steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) smolts in the Sacramento/San Joaquin watershed. Environmental Biology of Fishes 96:273-286.

Michel, C. J., A. J. Ammann, E. D. Chapman, P. T. Sandstrom, H. E. Fish, M. J. Thomas, G. P. Singer, S. T. Lindley, A. P. Klimley, and R. B. MacFarlane. 2013. The effects of environmental factors on the migratory movement patterns of Sacramento River yearling late-fall run Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha). Environmental Biology of Fishes 96:257-271.

Ammann, A.J., Michel, C.J., and MacFarlane, R.B. 2011. The effects of surgically implanted acoustic transmitters on laboratory growth, survival, and tag retention in hatchery yearling Chinook salmon. Environmental Biology of Fishes. DOI:10.1007/s10641-011-9941-9

Perry, R., P. Brandes, J. Burau, A. Klimley, B. MacFarlane, C. Michel, and J. Skalski. 2013. Sensitivity of survival to migration routes used by juvenile Chinook salmon to negotiate the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. Environmental Biology of Fishes 96:381-392.

Hayes, S., N. Teutschel, C. Michel, C. Champagne, P. Robinson, M. Fowler, T. Yack, D. Mellinger, S. Simmons, D. Costa, and R. MacFarlane. 2013. Mobile receivers: releasing the mooring to "see" where fish go. Environmental Biology of Fishes 96:189-201.

Sandstrom, P.T., Ammann, A.J., Michel, C., Singer, G., Chapman, E.D., Lindley, S., MacFarlane, R.B., and Klimley, A.P. 2012. Growth, survival, and tag retention of steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and its application to survival estimates. Environmental Biology of Fishes DOI: 10.1007/s10641-012-0051-0

Moore, J. W., S. A. Hayes, W. Duffy, S. Gallagher, C. J. Michel, and D. Wright. 2011. Nutrient fluxes and the recent collapse of coastal California salmon populations. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 68:1161-1170.

Michel, C. J.. 2010. River and estuarine survival and migration of yearling Sacramento River Chinook Salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) smolts and the influence of environment. Master's thesis, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz, p. 1-130.