News Release

Schoenfuss featured in NSF video

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Heiko Schoenfuss, professor biology

Heiko Schoenfuss, professor biology.

Heiko Schoenfuss, professor biology Matt Julius, professor of biology 

Noted aquatic fauna expert Heiko Schoenfuss is featured in a National Science Foundation (NSF) video about unusual Hawaiian fish.

The professor of biology and other scientists from St. Cloud State and Clemson universities have made multiple trips to Hawaii to investigate the adaptation and evolution of Sicyopterus stimpsoni, the "inching climber" goby fish. The tiny fish use a oral and pelvic suction cups to scale rocks behind waterfalls, an arduous trip that takes them from the ocean to freshwater spawning grounds.

The story and 3:08 video (below) were created by correspondent Miles O'Brien and producer Marsha Walton of NSF's "Science Nation" magazine.

Schoenfuss and his colleagues use standard and high-speed video to decipher and interpret the locomotion of goby fish. Read a paper (PDF) which compares Caribbean and Pacific Island goby species. 

He likens the work of the "inching climber" goby fish to a human scaling Mount Everest three times in a short time span.

Schoenfuss, who earn his doctorate at Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, directs St. Cloud State's Aquatic Toxicology Lab. Matt Julius, a St. Cloud State professor of biology, has also studied Hawaiian goby fish. Read a paper (PDF) that discusses three climbing goby species, which Julius authored with Schoenfuss and others. 

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