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UNF Limnology Students perform field work at Lake Oneida.
Salt marsh
Oyster beds
Students and professor working with a Benthic tray
gator hatchling
entire class crossing florida creek
Two Herons

Dale A. Casamatta

Dave Casamatta photo


Faculty Bio



Phone: (904) 620-1936

Office: Building 59, Room 3308



Research Interests

Algae, Aquatic Ecology, Cyanobacteria, Microbial Ecology, Systematics


Areas of Expertise

Algae, Aquatic Ecology, Cyanobacteria, Microbial Ecology, Systematics



B.S. John Carroll University (1995)

M.S. Kent State University (1998)

Ph.D. Ohio University (2002)



My research interests fall into two main categories: aquatic ecology and systematics, both of which deal largely with algae. The algae are a polyphyletic assemblage that are the primary producers in most aquatic ecosystems. A great group of organisms, they serve as the basis of myriad aquatic ecosystems. Unfortunately, they have received a lot of publicity in the last decade as eutrophication has led to greater numbers of algal blooms, with concurrent deleterious ecosystem level problems.


My lab has undertaken several projects to understand and quantify how algal communities change in response to different environmental parameters. We are currently working to elucidate the role of nutrient loads in influencing the epiphytic algal community. Further, we are working on a collaborative project to examine the role of native riparian vegetation as a method of ameliorating nutrient loads into tributaries of the St. Johns River.


Second, my lab is very interested in cyanobacterial systematics (untangling evolutionary relationships). To that end we have a collected cyanobacterial strains from around the world and employ morphological (cell dimensions, divisions, ultra-structure, folding patterns of the 16-23S ITS regions), ecological and molecular (sequencing of the 16S rDNA gene, ITS regions) data sets to elucidate phylogenetic relationships.


We have also recently started several projects using cyanophages (viruses which infect cyanobacteria). We are examining the distribution and occurrence of freshwater cyanophages, what taxonomic groups are present during and after bloom events, the genetic make up of the phages, and how they impact the cyanobacterial community.


Thus, if you are interested in all things algal or aquatic, we may be the lab to contemplate…




Casamatta, D.A, C.D. Villanueva, A.D. Garvey, H.S. Stocks, M. Vaccarino, P. Dvořák, P. Hašler, & J.R. Johansen. 2020. Reptodigitus chapmanii (Nostocales, Hapalosiphonaceae) gen. nov.: a unique Nostocalean (Cyanobacteria) genus based on a polyphasic approach. Journal of Phycology 56: 425-436.

Villanueva, C.D., Garvey, A.D., Hašler, P., Dvořák, P., Poulíčková, A., Norwich, A.R., & Casamatta, D.A. 2018. Descriptions of Brasilonema geniculatum and Calothrix dumus (Nostocales, Cyanobacteria): two new taxa isolated from cemetery tombstones. Phytotaxa 387: 1-20

Dvořák, P., E. Jahodářová, D.A. Casamatta, P. Hašler, & A. Poulíčková. 2018. Difference without distinction? Gaps in cyanobacterial systematics; when more is just too much. Fottea, Olomouc, 18(1): 130–136

Beaver, J.R., J.E. Kirsch, C.E. Tausz, E.E. Samples, T.R. Renicker, K.C. Scotese, H.A. McMaster, B.J. Blasius-Wert, P.V. Zimba, & D.A. Casamatta. 2018. Long-term trends in plankton seasonal dynamics in Lake Mead (Nevada-Arizona, USA) and implications for climate change. Hydrobiologia 822:85-109

C.D. Kilgore, J.R. Johansen, T. Mai, T. Hauer, D.A. Casamatta, A.R. Norwich, & C. Sheil. 2018. Molecular characterization of Geitleria appalachiana sp. nov. (Nostocales, Cyanobacteria) and formation of Geitleriaceae fam. nov. Fottea 18(2):150-163

Villaneuva, C.D., P. Hašler, P. Dvořák, A. Poulíčková, & D.A. Casamatta. 2018. Brasilonema lichenoides sp. nov. and Chroococcidiopsis lichenoides sp. nov. (cyanobacteria): two novel cyanobacterial constituents isolated from a tripartite lichen of headstones. J. Phycol. 54: 224-233.

Dvořák, P., Hašler, P., Pitelková, P., Tabáková, P., Casamatta, D.A. & Poulíčková, A. 2017. A new cyanobacterium from the Everglades, Florida – Chamaethrix gen. nov. Fottea 17(2): 269–276.

Suradkar, A., C. Villanueva, L.A. Gaysina, D.A. Casamatta, A. Saraf, G. Dighe, R. Mergu, & S. Prashant. 2017. Nostoc thermotolerans sp. nov., a soil dwelling species of Nostoc (Cyanobacteria) isolated from Madhya Pradesh, India. Int. J. System. Evol. Microbiol. 67:1969-1305.

Hasler, P, Casamatta, D.A, Dvorak, P., and Poulíčková, A. 2017. Jacksonvillia apiculata (Oscillatoriales, Cyanobacteria) gen. et sp. nov.: a new genus of filamentous, epipsamic cyanobacterium from the North Florida. Phycologia 56:284-295.

Dvořák, P., D.A. Casamatta, P. Hašler, E. Jahodářová, A.R. Norwich, & A. Poulíčková. 2017. The Diversity Cyanobacteria, in “Modern topics in phototrophic prokaryotes”. Springer Press. pp. 3-46.

Casamatta, D.A. and Hasler, P. 2016. Common cyanobacterial genera of lotic systems, in “River Algae”. Springer Press, pp. 5-34.

Davidson, D.W., Casamatta, D.A., Salim, K.A., Atanasova, L., Lim, L., Mei, C.C., Jones, T.H., Kopchinskiy, A., and Druzhinina, I. 2016. Microbes and nestmate bodies digested in the buccal pellets of Borneo’s “exploding ants”. Biotropica 48:518-527.