Alex Kattan

Research Group Staff

Research Specialist alexander.kattan@kaust.edu.sa

Research Interest

Alex is from the small coastal town of Jupiter, Florida, where he first learned to dive and became interested in general marine science and conservation. After graduating from the University of Florida in 2012 with a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Conservation, Alex worked on research evaluating the ecological impacts of invasive lionfish in the Florida Keys with the Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF). He then joined the Reef Ecology Lab at KAUST in 2013, earning an MSc in Marine Science. His master's work involved conducting and comparing baseline reef fish surveys along a putative gradient of fishing pressure in the central Red Sea, highlighting the urgent need for conservation planning and recovery of Saudi Arabian Red Sea reefs. At KAUST, Alex was also heavily involved in research efforts surrounding movement ecology of the local whale shark aggregation. He continued this effort as a core member of the Red Sea Safaris team following graduation, working to integrate research, tourism, citizen science and education.

Now a Research Specialist in the Reef Ecology Lab, Alex works closely with research scientists, post-docs and students on scientific projects spanning a wide range of topics in marine ecology. His main interests include reef fish ecology, fish behavior, megafauna movement ecology, baseline assessment and monitoring, marine protected areas, and marine conservation.