Erik Sotka


Address: Grice 208
Phone: 843.953.9191
Personal Website:


Ph.D. - UNC Chapel Hill
B.S. - University of Washington

Research Interests

Marine ecology, conservation biology, molecular ecology.

Courses Taught

BIO 112: Evolution, Ecology & Biology of Organisms
BIO 152
: Honors Biology
BIO 211
: Biodiversity, Ecology & Evolution
BIO 503
: Marine Molecular Ecology
BIO 630/EVSS 722
: Marine Invertebrate Zoology


Whalen, K.E., E.E. Sotka, J.V. Goldstone and M.E. Hahn (2010) The role of multixenobiotic transporters in predatory marine molluscs as counter-defense mechanisms against dietary allelochemicals.  Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part C: Toxicology & Pharmacology

Sotka, E.E., A. McCarty and H.B. Giddens (2010) Are tropical herbivores more tolerant of chemically rich seaweeds than are temperate herbivores? A test of seaweed-herbivore coevolution. Proceedings of the 11th International Coral Reef Symposium 280-284

Cushman, E.L., N.K. Jue, A.E. Strand and E.E. Sotka (2009) Evaluating the demographic significance of genetic homogeneity using a coalescent-based simulation: a case study with gag (Mycteroperca microlepis). Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 66: 1821-1830     PDF

Crickenberger, S. and E.E. Sotka (2009) Temporal shifts of fouling communities in Charleston Harbor with reports of Perna viridis.  Journal of the North Carolina Academy of Sciences 125(2) 

Sotka, E.E. and M.E. Hay (2009) Effects of herbivores, nutrient enrichment and their interactions on macroalgal proliferation and coral growth.  Coral Reefs 28: 555-568 PDF  

Sotka, E.E., A. McCarty, N. Oakman, E. Monroe and F. Van Dolah (2009) Benthic herbivores are not deterred by brevetoxins produced by the red tide dinoflagellate Karenia brevis. Journal of Chemical Ecology 38: 851-859PDF  

Sotka, E.E.*, J. Forbey, M. Horn, A. Poore, D. Raubenheimer and K. Whalen* (2009) The emerging role of pharmacology in understanding the ecology and evolution of marine and freshwater consumers. Integrative and Comparative Biology 49: 291-313 [*equal co-authors]PDF  

Ayme-Southgate, A, R. Southgate, R. Philipp, E.E. Sotka, and C. Kramp (2009) The myofibrillar protein, projectin, is highly conserved across insect evolution except for its PEVK domain.  Journal of Molecular Evolution 67: 653-669 PDF  

Sotka, E.E. and H.B. Giddens (2009) Seawater temperature alters feeding discrimination by cold-temperate but not subtropical individuals of an ectothermic herbivore. Biological Bulletin 216:75-84 PDF  

Geller, J.*, Sotka, E.E.*, R. Kado, S.R. Palumbi, and E. Schmidt (2008) Pathways of invasion of a northeastern Pacific acorn barnacle, Balanus glandula in Japan and Argentina [* denotes equal co-authors] Marine Ecology Progress Series 258: 211-218 PDF  

Sotka, E.E. (2008)  Clines.  In: Encyclopedia of Ecology, ed: S.V. Jørgensen.  Elsevier. 

Sotka, E.E. and K.E. Whalen (2008) Herbivore offense in the sea: the detoxification and transport of algal secondary metabolites.  Pp. 203-228 In: Algal Chemical Ecology, ed. C. Amsler.  Blackwell.  PDF

Poore, A.G.B., N.A. Hill, and E.E. Sotka (2008) Phylogenetic and geographic variation in host breadth and composition used by herbivorous amphipods in the family Ampithoidae.  Evolution 62: 21-38 PDF

Couceiro, L., R. Barreiro, J.M. Ruiz and E.E. Sotka (2007) Genetic isolation-by-distance among populations of the netted dog whelk Nassarius reticulatus (L.) along the European Atlantic coastline.  Journal of Heredity 98: 603-610 PDF

Sotka, E.E. (2007) Restricted host use by the herbivorous amphipod Peramphithoides tea is motivated by food quality and abiotic refuge. Marine Biology 151: 1831-1838 PDF

Brunelle, S.A., S. Hazard, E.E. Sotka, and F.M. Van Dolah (2007) Characterization of a dinoflagellate cryptochrome blue light receptor with a possible role in circadian control of the cell cycle.  Plant Physiology 43: 509-518 PDF

Wares, J.P., P.H. Barber, J. Ross-Ibarra, E.E. Sotka, and R.J. Toonen (2006) Mitochondrial DNA and population size (Letter to Editor).  Science  314: 1388-1389 PDF

Sotka, E.E. and S.R. Palumbi (2006) The use of genetic clines to estimate dispersal distances of marine larvae.  Ecology 87:1094-1103 PDF

Sotka, E.E.  (2005) Local adaptation in host use among marine invertebrates (Invited Review). Ecology Letters 8: 448-459 PDF

Sotka, E.E. and R.W. Thacker (2005)  Do some corals like it hot?  Trends in Ecology and Evolution 20: 59-62 PDF

Sotka, E.E., J. Hempelmann, and C. Biermann (2005) Genetic signal of historic population expansion in the Puget Sound rockfish Sebastes emphaeus. Marine Biotechnology 7 :223-230 PDF

Sotka, E.E., J.P. Wares, J.A. Barth, R.K. Grosberg and S.R. Palumbi. (2004) Strong genetic clines and geographical variation in gene flow in the rocky intertidal barnacle Balanus glandula. Molecular Ecology 13: 2143-2156 PDF

Sotka, E.E., J.P. Wares, and M.E. Hay (2003) Geographic and genetic variation in feeding preferences for chemically-rich seaweeds  Evolution 57: 2262-2276 *Cover article PDF

Sotka, E.E. (2003) Genetic control of feeding preference in the amphipod Ampithoe longimana.  Marine Ecology Progress Series 256:305-310 PDF

Sotka, E.E. and M.E. Hay (2002) Geographic variation among herbivore populations in tolerance for a chemically-rich seaweed. Ecology 83: 2721–2735 PDF

Sotka, E.E.*, R.B. Taylor*, M.E. Hay (2002)  Tissue-specific induction of resistance to herbivores in a brown seaweed: the importance of direct grazing versus waterborne signals from grazed neighbors. [* denotes equal co-authors] Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 277: 1-12  PDF

Taylor, R.B.*, E.E. Sotka*, and M.E. Hay (2002)  Within-plant variation in susceptibility and response to amphipod grazing in the brown seaweed Sargassum filipendula.  [* denotes equal co-authors]  Oecologia 132:68-76 PDF

Sotka, E.E., M.E. Hay, and J.D. Thomas (1999)  Host-plant specialization by a non-herbivorous amphipod: advantages for the amphipod and costs for the seaweed.  Oecologia 118:471-482 PDF

Miller, M.W., M.E. Hay, S.L. Miller, D. Malone, E.E. Sotka, A.M. Szmant (1999) A new method for manipulation of nutrients on coral reefs: effects of nutrients vs. herbivores on reef algae.  Limnology and Oceanography 44: 1847-1861 PDF