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Brooke Penaluna

Headshot photo of Brooke Penaluna.Research Fish Biologist
Pacific Northwest Research Station
Corvallis Forestry Sciences Lab

Contact via email
Phone: (541)758-8783
Fax: (541)750-7329
ResearchGate profile
Google Scholar search

Statement of Research:

My research focuses on understanding the effects of climate change, contemporary forest harvest and disturbances on fish and both riparian and aquatic habitats, and more generally on the ecological linkages among water, land, and people. My goals are to use multiple lines of inquiry from various approaches to understand the complexities of fish and the aquatic and riparian world with implications for management and policy planning.

Projects & Activities:

Collecting streamwater samples for eDNA testing test for the presence of aquatic species.

Collecting streamwater samples for eDNA testing.

Detecting Aquatic Species Using eDNA
Many aquatic species that occupy streams are cryptic or are
found in low densities, making detection difficult.
Understanding the presence, abundance, and genetic variability
of multiple aquatic species would provide a breakthrough
for the monitoring of aquatic species of concern and invasive
species, and would help managers and landowners plan for
multiple management objectives. With multiple partners, we
are applying novel tools and approaches using metabarcoding
environmental DNA (eDNA) of water to evaluate the presence of
multi-species found in streams across Oregon, Washington, and
Northern California.


Cover of July 2016 issue of BioScience

Diversity in the fisheries science workforce in the United States.

Diversity Inequities in Fisheries Science
On the cover of the July 2016 issue of BioScience!
Cover: Diversity in the fisheries science workforce in the
United States. The top fish shows composition of the general
population that could potentially feed into the workforce, by
gender and race/ethnicity, based on the 2010 Census. The bottom
fish represents the current composition of the US fisheries
science workforce by gender and race/ethnicity, based on the
findings of Ivan Arismendi and Brooke Penaluna. The results are
discussed in an article appearing in the July 2016 issue of
of BioScience. Image credit: Kathryn Ronnenberg, US Forest Service
Pacific Northwest Research Station.
Read more in BioScience


Distribution map of Cutthroat Trout subspecies.

Excerpt of distribution map of Cutthroat Trout subspecies (Oncorhynchus clarkii ssp.) in western North America from Penaluna et al. 2016, Fisheries

Conservation Diversity of Pacific Trout
Pacific trout (Oncorhynchus spp.) in western North
America are strongly valued from ecological, socioeconomic,
and cultural views, and have drawn the attention of much
research and conservation efforts. Although most research on
salmonid fishes emphasizes Pacific salmon, we put forth an effort
to highlight Pacific trout because they share a common evolutionary
history and in western North America many taxa have not been
formally described, particularly in the southern extent of their
range. With multiple partners in other regions of the United States
as well as in Canada and Mexico, we are advancing the scientific
understanding of the conservation of the diversity of Pacific trout.
Read more in Fisheries


Team of four field technicians electrofishing a stream segment below a reach net to sample for fish and amphibians.

Electrofishing a stream reach for the SCALER field experiment.

Salmonids and Stream Function
How do stream consumers of fish and amphibians influence stream
functional processes, and how are they influenced by them? Building
on the broader SCALER project led by Walter Dodds, and partnering
with Alba Argerich, we used an on-going field experiment to
understand the effect of different densities of consumers on
macroinvertebrates and stream functional processes, including
nutrient uptake and metabolism.

Link to YouTube video of SCALER project

Study area in the Trask watershed, with field sites that provided data for the inSTREAM model.

Field site locations on four streams in the Trask watershed that provided data for the inSTREAM model.

Population Dynamics and Disturbance
Although considerable knowledge exists related to salmonids
in the Pacific Northwest, very little is known about processes
underlying population dynamics and interactions among disturbances
that influence these fishes. With multiple partners, and using
inSTREAM, we are discovering the responses of trout to varying
environmental conditions and identifying stream characteristics
that safeguard trout in streams in the Pacific Northwest, providing
a breakthrough for managers.


Cutthroat trout using cover object to hide from stream predators.

Instream Cover and Emigration
In contrast to food and space, instream cover and emigration
are potential drivers of population dynamics in fish, but have
received less attention. Cover, shelter, or refuge provides a
place to avoid predators, evade competition, and circumvent
harsh environmental conditions within a site, whereas emigration
may occur when an individual permanently leaves a site to seek
more favorable conditions elsewhere. Although, it has long been
acknowledged that cover enhances animal retention in streams,
the link between cover use and emigration remains unclear. Read more

Selected Publications:

Note: Most PDF files linked in the publications section of this page were not created by the USDA Forest Service, and may not be accessible to screen-reader software. Many publications are open access, and links to the html versions on the journal websites are also provided, where applicable.

Flitcroft, R., I. Arismendi, C. Davis, G. Giannico, S. Lewis, B.E. Penaluna, M. Santelmann, M. Safeeq, J. Snyder. 2019. Using expressed behavior to evaluate vulnerability of Coho Salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) upriver migrants to future hydrologic regimes: management implications and conservation planning. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems. https://doi.org/10.1002/aqc.3014

Coble, A.A., C.A. Flinders, J.A. Homyack, B.E. Penaluna, R.C. Cronn, K. Weitemier. 2019. eDNA as a tool for identifying freshwater species in sustainable forestry: a critical review and potential future applications. Science of the Total Environment 649: 1157–1170. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.08.370

Johnson, S.L., and B.E. Penaluna. 2018. Climate change and interactions between climate change and multiple stressors in rivers. Chapter 2. Pages 23–44 in: S. Sabater, A. Elosegi, and R. Ludwig (eds.), Multiple Stressors in River Ecosystems: Status, Impacts and Prospects for the Future. Elsevier: Amsterdam, The Netherlands/Oxford, UK/Cambridge, MA, USA. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-811713-2.00002-9 https://www.sciencedirect.com/book/9780128117132/multiple-stressors-in-river-ecosystems

Penaluna, B.E., G.H. Reeves, Z. Barnett, P.A. Bisson, J.M. Buffington, A. Dolloff, R. Flitcroft, C.H. Luce, K. Nislow, J. Rothlisberger, and M. Warren. 2018. Using natural disturbance and portfolio concepts to guide aquatic–riparian ecosystem management. Fisheries Special Issue, August 2018. Fisheries 43(9): 406–422. https://doi.org/10.1002/fsh.10097

Penaluna, B.E., I Arismendi. 2018. Unraveling the hidden lives of warm-water fish communities. Environmental Biology of Fishes 101(11): 1639–1640. DOI: 10.1007/s10641-018-0803-6 https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10641-018-0803-6

Olson, D.H., S.L. Johnson, P.D. Anderson, B.E. Penaluna, and J.B. Dunham. 2017. Aquatic-riparian systems. Chapter 14, pages 191-206 in D.H. Olson and B. Van Horne, editors. People, forests and change - Lessons from the Pacific Northwest. Washington, DC/Covelo, CA/London: Island Press.

Olson, D.H., B.E. Penaluna, B.G. Marcot, M.G. Raphael, and K.B. Aubry. 2017. Biodiversity. Chapter 13, pages 174-190 in D.H. Olson and B. Van Horne, editors. People, forests and change - Lessons from the Pacific Northwest. Washington, DC/Covelo, CA/London: Island Press.

Penaluna, B.E. 2017. Conservación de truchas del Pacifico. Pages 183-188 in A. Ruiz Luna and F. Garcia de Leon, editors. La trucha dorada Mexicana. AGT Press.

Penaluna, B.E., I. Arismendi, C.M. Moffit, and Z.L. Penney. 2017. Nine proposed action areas to enhance diversity and inclusion in the American Fisheries Society. Fisheries 42: 8, 399-402. Link to doi.10.1080/03632415.2017.1345549.

Penaluna, B.E., D.H. Olson, R.L. Flitcroft, M. Weber, J.R. Bellmore, S.M. Wondzell, J.B. Dunham, S.L. Johnson, and G.H. Reeves. 2017. Aquatic biodiversity in forests: A weak link in ecosystem services resilience. Biodiversity and Conservation 26: 3125-3155. doi:10.1007/s10531-016-1148-0.

Schwartz, M., B.E. Penaluna, T.M. Wilcox. 2017. Not just for fisheries biologists anymore: Environmental DNA sampling makes strides in wildlife. The Wildlife Professional. 11(6): 47–51.

Arismendi, I., and B.E. Penaluna. 2016. Examining diversity inequities in fisheries science: A call to action. BioScience 66(7):584-591.

Penaluna, B. 2016. The histories and destinies of Chile and California. Book review: "Strangers on Familiar Soil", by Edward Dallam Melillo. Northwest Science 90(4):498-499. Link to doi: 10.3955/046.090.0410

Penaluna, B.E., A. Abadia-Cardoso, J.B. Dunham, F.J. Garcia de Leon, R.E. Gresswell, A. Ruiz-Luna, E.B. Taylor, B.B. Shepard, R. Al-chokhachy, C.C. Muhlfeld, K.R. Bestgen, K. Rogers, M.A. Escalante, E.R. Keeley, G. Temple, J.E. Williams, K. Matthews, R. Pierce, R.L. Mayden, R.P. Kovach, J.C. Garza, and K.D. Fausch. Accepted. Conservation of native Pacific trout diversity in western North America. Fisheries 41(6):286-300. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03632415.2016.1175888

Penaluna, B.E., D.H. Olson, R.L. Flitcroft, M. Weber, J.R. Bellmore, S.M. Wondzell, J.B. Dunham, S.L. Johnson, and G.H. Reeves. 2016. Aquatic biodiversity in forests: A weak link in ecosystem services resilience. Biodiversity and Conservation 26: 3125-3155. doi:10.1007/s10531-016-1148-0

Penaluna, B.E., and L.R. Bodensteiner. 2015. North Pacific Spiny Dogfish (Squalus suckleyi) presence in eelgrass habitat in the Salish Sea, Washington. Northwestern Naturalist 96(3): 222-226. http://www.bioone.org/doi/full/10.1898/1051-1733-96.3.222

Penaluna, B.E., J.B. Dunham, D.L.G. Noakes. 2015. Instream cover and shade mediate avian predation on trout in semi-natural streams. Ecology of Freshwater Fish doi: 10.1111/eff.12221

Penaluna, B.E., J.B. Dunham, S.F. Railsback, I. Arismendi, S. Johnson, R.E. Bilby, M. Safeeq, and A.E. Skaugset. 2015. Local variability mediates vulnerability of trout populations to land use and climate change. PloS ONE 10(8): e0135334.

Penaluna, B., and D.L.G. Noakes. 2015. Instream cover and shade mediate avian predation on trout in semi-natural streams. StreamNotes. August. http://www.fs.fed.us/biology/nsaec/assets/streamnotes2015-8.pdf

Penaluna, B.E., S.F. Railsback, J.B. Dunham, S. Johnson, R.E. Bilby, and A.E. Skaugset. 2015. The role of environmental regimes and the geophysical template to stream-living trout. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 72: 893-901.

Arismendi, I., B.E. Penaluna, J.B. Dunham, C. Garcia de Leaniz, D. Soto, I.A. Fleming, D. Gomez-Uchida, G. Gajardo, P.V. Vargas, and J. Leon-Munoz. 2014. Differential invasion success of salmonids in southern Chile: patterns and hypotheses. Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries 24: 919-941. DOI 10.1007/s11160-014-9351-0

Arismendi I., J. Gonzalez, D. Soto, and B. Penaluna. 2012. Piscivory and diet overlap between two non-native fishes in southern Chilean streams. Austral Ecology 37:346-354.

Arismendi I., B. Penaluna, and D. Soto. 2011. Body condition indices as a rapid assessment of the abundance of introduced salmonids in oligotrophic lakes of southern Chile. Lake and Reservoir Management 27:61-69.

Penaluna, B., I. Arismendi, and D. Soto. 2009. Evidence of interactive segregation between introduced trout and native fishes in Northern Patagonian Rivers, Chile. Transactions of American Fisheries Society 138:839-845.

Arismendi I., D. Soto, B. Penaluna, C. Jara, C. Leal, and J. León-Muñoz. 2009. Aquaculture, non-native salmonid invasions, and associated declines of native fishes in lakes of the northern Chilean Patagonia. Freshwater Biology 54:1135-1147.

Arismendi, I., and B. Penaluna. 2009. Native and introduced inland fishes of the Chilean Patagonia: A bilingual field fish guide. Universidad Austral de Chile-Valdivia. Funded by ICM Mideplan Chile.