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Biologist Gary Garrett Named Distinguished Texas Scientist by Texas Academy of Science

Biologist Gary Garrett Named Distinguished Texas Scientist by Texas Academy of Science

Gary P Garrett has been named a Distinguished Texas Scientist by the Texas Academy of Science for work in the conservation of Texas aquatic natural resources. The award honors researchers who have spent a significant portion of their career in Texas and whose publications have garnered national or international recognition.

​A Research Fellow in Integrative Biology, Gary P. Garrett has focused his work on the fishes of Texas and has helped in understanding their biology and methods for their conservation. He has published more than eighty scientific papers on the subject, and is a leading expert in the zoology of the Texas aquatic environment. 

Garrett earned his Ph.D. in ichthyology, a branch of zoology which specializes in fish, at The University of Texas at Austin, writing a dissertation on the nearly endangered Pecos Pupfish, and its reproduction. His research has since focused on the methods of conservation of Texas fishes, such as the impact of introducing fish raised in captivity to the wild, and the relationship between water conservation in the Edwards Aquifer and the native fish population there.

Having spent nearly two decades as a researcher and then the director of Watershed Conservation at the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Garrett has had a varied career which has mixed the study of fishes with the implementation of the conservation methods he has studied and helped create.

Garret (left) working with the US Fish and Wildlife Services' Rio Grande Silvery Minnow Recovery Team. Image by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

​To this end, Garrett is very active in various conservation projects in Texas. He has served as the Chairman of the Desert Fishes Council, which aims to maintain the aquatic ecosystems of desert regions, such as Texas' Big Bend region. He also serves as a member of various species conservation teams, such as Rio Grande Silvery Minnow Recovery Team (PDF) and the Rio Grande Fishes Recovery Team. 

Garrett will accept the award at the 199th annual meeting of the Texas Academy of Science, from March 4 to 6 of this year, and will give a lecture on the biology and conservation of Texas fishes. 

Other UT Austin scientists who have received this honor in the past include neuroscientist and psychologist Francisco Gonzalez-Lima and Professor of Integrative Biology Camille Parmesan.

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Friday, 03 February 2023

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