Western Washington University
David Shull is an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Western Washington University. He received a bachelor's degree in oceanography from the University of Washington, a master's degree from the University of Connecticut, and a PhD from the University of Massachusetts Boston. His research focuses on organisms that inhabit the muddy seafloor (benthos) and their effects on the chemistry of sediments and overlying water.
He first became interested in benthic organisms while digging up various worms, clams, shrimp and other unusual creatures inhabiting mud flats exposed at low tide in front of his grandparent's home on Vashon Island in Puget Sound, Washington.
Although the vast majority of the earth's solid surface is covered in marine mud and benthic organisms thus inhabit the largest habitat on the earth's solid surface, there is much to be learned about the ecological and functional roles these bottom dwellers play in the ocean. David's work in the Bering Sea focuses on the effects of variation in organic-matter supply from the water column to the sediments on the abundance of benthic organisms and the rates of nutrient cycling between sediments and overlying water.