Dr. Bruce Carlson
Bruce’s career in ichthyology began in 1956 with a small aquarium he received as a gift. From that day on he has always had an aquarium nearby. In 1967 he took up scuba diving while working at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Michigan in April 1971, then traveled to Guyana to assist in a study of cichlid fishes. From 1972 – 1975, he participated in a survey of the coral reefs of the Fiji archipelago as a joint project of the Peace Corps and Smithsonian.
In 1975, he moved to Honolulu where he earned his PhD in Ichthyology at the University of Hawaiʻi and started work at the Waikiki Aquarium where he pioneered techniques for culturing corals, and new exhibits featuring nautilus, cuttlefish, giant clams. In 1990, he was appointed Director of the Waikiki Aquarium. He left Hawaiʻi in April 2002 to join the design team to create the world’s largest aquarium in Atlanta, Georgia. In 2011 he retired and returned to Hawaiʻi.
Bruce has published numerous scientific articles ranging from descriptions of new species of reef fishes, to telemetry work on chambered nautilus, to culture methods for corals. He remains active in the defense of the Hawaiʻi aquarium fishery and continues with research on the chambered nautilus.