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School of Forest, Fisheries, & Geomatics Sciences

School of Forest, Fisheries, & Geomatics Sciences

Jeff Hill

Professor, Non-Native and Invasive Aquatic Animals

Jeff Hill joined the FAS faculty in January 2006. He is located at the UF/IFAS Tropical Aquaculture Laboratory (TAL) in Ruskin (near Tampa) and maintains close associations with departmental and other UF programs in Gainesville. He has been involved in research and extension activities in tropical ornamental aquaculture and in non-native aquatic species as a post-doctoral associate at the TAL since 2003. His graduate work investigated the ecology of native and non-native predatory fishes in Florida. Prior to graduate school, he cultured African cichlids on his tropical ornamental fish farm in south Florida.

Jeff employs a combination of field sampling and experimental studies, coupled with ecological theory, to provide science-based information on non-native aquatic species to natural resource agencies, industry, and other stakeholders. He is interested in the use of non-native species in aquaculture and in other human activities.

Jeff is a member of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Transgenic Aquatic Species Task Force, a scientific advisory committee evaluating applications for culturing transgenic species in Florida aquaculture. He is a member of the Monitoring and Detection Committee and the Research Committee of the federal Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force and a member of Florida’s Risk Assessment Sub-Working Group.

Courses Taught

IdentifierCourse Name
FAS 4932/6932  Invasion Ecology of Aquatic Animals 
FAS 4932/6932  Introduction to Aquaculture 
  • Research Interests

    Recent research projects in non-native aquatic species include feeding ecology of native largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides and introduced butterfly peacock bass Cichla ocellaris in southeast Florida canals and diet studies of the Asian swamp eel Monopterus albus, a potential pest species in ornamental aquaculture ponds in Florida.

    Recent research in aquaculture includes topical and immersion application of hormones for induced spawning of ornamental fish, effectiveness studies of aquaculture chemicals and therapeutants for approval through the US Food and Drug Administration’s Investigational New Animal Drug (INAD) approval process, and evaluation of various feeding and fertilizing regimes for pond production of tropical ornamental fishes.

    Research Interests

    • Ecology, life history, and effects of non-native species in aquatic systems; assessment of ecological risks associated with nonnative aquatic species in natural systems and the use of these organisms in human activities such as sport fishing, the aquarium hobby, and aquaculture
    • Tropical ornamental aquaculture, including commercial production and controlled spawning
    • Ecology, life history, and taxonomy of freshwater fishes from the southeastern USA and from tropical regions worldwide


Tropical Aquaculture Laboratory
1408 24th Street SE
Ruskin, FL 33570
(813) 671-5230 ext 118

  • Education

    • PhD, Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, UF, 2003
    • MS, Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, UF, 1998
    • BS, Biology, University of North Alabama, 1991