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The laboratory of Dr. Kim Holland, also known as the HIMB Shark Research Group, is part of the Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB). HIMB is a research institute of the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa, which is located on Moku o Lo'e (Coconut Island) in Kane'ohe Bay, O'ahu.

Our research group specializes in organismic and supraorganismic biology of marine organisms. The predominant research approach is to take advantage of the laboratory's unique physical setting by blending rigorous laboratory work with well-focused field experiments to investigate the behavior, physiology, and ecology of sharks and other fish.

To learn more about our group and the research we do, please select from the links provided at the top of this page .

Lab News
Shark Bycatch

Due to concerns over the declining silky shark populations in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean, the ISSF Bycatch Project sponsored a study to look at the post release survival rates of juvenile silky sharks incidentally captured in purse seine nets when fishing for tuna around drifting fish aggregating devices (FADs). Researchers from the University of Hawaii participated in a 44-day cruise on a commercial purse seine vessel and conducted several experiments on juvenile silky sharks captured as bycatch.

Shark Biology

Researchers completed the second phase of a project to observe the movements of tiger sharks caught and tagged around the island of Maui. The study, funded by the Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), is in response to a recent uptick in the number of shark attacks recorded around the Valley Isle. Lead scientists Carl Meyer and Kim Holland report that in early 2014 their team caught and released nine tiger sharks in waters off Maui. The near-real-time tracks of these sharks will be added to the eight tracks already on the Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS) Hawai'i Tiger Shark Tracking web page.

Meyer et al. (2014)

Since 1993, the University of Hawai'i has conducted a research program aimed at elucidating tiger shark biology, and to date 420 tiger sharks have been tagged and 50 recaptured. We used these empirical mark-recapture data to estimate growth rates and maximum size for tiger sharks in Hawaii. We conclude that tiger shark growth rates and maximum sizes in Hawaii are generally consistent with those in other regions, and hypothesize that a broad diet may help them to achieve this rapid growth by maximizing prey consumption rates.


After several recent attacks, a new web site hosted by the Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS) allows people to track the movements of several of the 15 tiger sharks tagged by researchers, led by Carl Meyer and Kim Holland of the Hawai‘i Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB), off Maui in October. Meyer said the initial results are consistent with the wide-ranging behavior seen previously. “They’ve revisited the places where they were originally captured, but they haven’t stayed in any one location for very long. They’re constantly on the move, and the timing of their visits has been unpredictable.”


UH Manoa