2006 Ph.D. – Georgia Institute of Technology – Applied Biology
2001 M.S. – Michigan State University – Fisheries and Wildlife
1997 B.A. – University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – Biology
1995 A.S. – Young Harris College – Biology 

Professional Experience

2013- present Associate Professor – Fisheries, Aquaculture, and Aquatic Sciences – Auburn University
2014-16 Program Director – National Science Foundation
2013 Fellow – Global Research Institute – University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
2007-13 Assistant Professor – Fisheries, Aquaculture, and Aquatic Sciences – Auburn University
2006-07 Research Investigator – School of Natural Resources and Environment – University of Michigan

Honors and awards

2014 Auburn University Provost’s Award for Excellence in Fostering Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship
2010 Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station Director’s Junior Faculty Research Award – Auburn University
2010 College of Agriculture Dean’s Grantsmanship Award – Auburn University

Professional Affiliations

Ecological Society of America
Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography
Sigma Xi

Research Activities

Alan is broadly interested in understanding the ecology of freshwater lakes, ponds, and reservoirs. Specifically, he studies the abiotic and biotic mechanisms mediating the promotion or control of freshwater harmful algal blooms and taste-and-odor events in aquaculture ponds, recreational reservoirs, and drinking water reservoirs. Alan also studies the threat that harmful algal blooms pose to livestock. You can learn more about Alan’s research at

Extension Activities

Alan routinely helps homeowners understand factors associated with harmful algal blooms in their private ponds. In addition to identifying dominant phytoplankton taxa in water samples, he conducts water quality analyses to determine the threat that algal toxins pose to aquatic foodwebs, livestock, and pets.

Recent Courses taught

FISH 5320/5321/6320/6321 – Limnology and lab

FISH 7350 – Meta-analysis

Select Publications

  • Olsen, B. K., M. F. Chislock, and A. E. Wilson. 2016. Eutrophication mediates a common off-flavor compound, 1-methylisoborneol, in a drinking water reservoir. Water Research 92:228-234.
  • Ger, K. A., P. Urrutia-Cordero, P. C. Frost, L.-A. Hansson, O. Sarnelle, A. E. Wilson, and M. Lurling. 2016. The interaction between cyanobacteria and zooplankton in a more eutrophic world. Harmful Algae 54:128-144.
  • Lyu, K., H. Guan, C. Wu, X. Wang, A. E. Wilson, and Z. Yang. 2016. Maternal consumption of non-toxic Microcystis induces tolerance of Daphnia magna offspring to toxic Microcystis. Freshwater Biology 61:219-228
  • Koch, R. E., A. E. Wilson, and G. E. Hill. 2016. The importance of carotenoid dose in supplementation studies with songbirds. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology 89(1):61-71.
  • Kollock, R., C. Andrews, A. Johnston, T. Elliott, A. E. Wilson, K. Games, and J. Sefton. 2016. A meta-analysis to determine if lower extremity muscle strengthening should be included in military knee overuse injury prevention programs. Journal of Athletic Training 51(4):xx-xx.
  • Goessling, J. M., H. Kennedy, M. T. Mendonça, and A. E. Wilson. 2015. A meta-analysis of plasma corticosterone and heterophil:lymphocyte ratios – Is there conservation of physiological stress responses over time? Functional Ecology 29:1189-1196.
  • Chislock, M. F. 2015. Ecology and management of off-flavors and cyanotoxins. LakeLine. Winter 2015:43-46
  • Bullard, A., D. DeVries, A. Wilson, H. Kinnucan, P. Clement, G. Lockaby, and C. Newland. 2015. Science or snake oil: Scholarship and peer review in the digital age. Book chapter in Auburn Speaks: On Cyber and the Digital Domain. Published by Auburn University. pp. 201-211.
  • ArchMiller, A. A., E. F. Bauer, R. E. Koch, B. K. Wijayawardena, A. Anil, J. J. Kottwitz, A. S. Munsterman, and A. E. Wilson. 2015. Formalizing the definition of meta-analysis in Molecular Ecology. Molecular Ecology 24:4042-4051.
  • Kollock, R., K. Games, A. E. Wilson, and J. Sefton. 2015. Effect of vehicle-ride exposure on cervical pathology – a meta-analysis. Industrial Health 53:197-205.
  • Games, K., J. Sefton, and A. E. Wilson. 2015. Effect of whole-body vibration on blood flow and muscle oxygenation: a meta-analysis. Journal of Athletic Training 50(5):542-549.
  • Kasinak, J.-M. E., C. J. Bishop, R. A. Wright, and A. E. Wilson. 2015. Grass carp do not consume the nuisance benthic cyanobacterium, Lyngbya wollei. Journal of Aquatic Plant Management 53:74-80.
  • Lyu, K., L. Zhang, X. Zhu, G. Cui, A. E. Wilson, and Z. Yang. 2015. Arginine kinase in the cladoceran Daphnia magna: cDNA sequencing and expression is associated with resistance to toxic Microcystis. Aquatic Toxicology 160:13-21.
  • Kasinak, J.-M. E., B. M. Holt, M. F. Chislock, and A. E. Wilson. 2015. Benchtop fluorometry of phycocyanin as a rapid approach for estimating cyanobacterial biovolume. Journal of Plankton Research 37(1):248-257.
  • Newcomer, B. J., P. H. Walz, M. D. Givens, and A. E. Wilson. 2015. Efficacy of bovine viral diarrhea virus vaccination to prevent reproductive disease: a meta-analysis. Theriogenology 83:360-365.
  • Chislock, M. F., K. L. Sharp, and A. E. Wilson. 2014. Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii dominates under very low and high nitrogen-to-phosphorus ratios. Water Research 49:207-214.
  • Doster, E., M. F. Chislock, J. F. Roberts, J. J. Kottwitz, and A. E. Wilson. 2014. Recognition of an important water quality issue at zoos: prevalence and potential threat of toxic cyanobacteria. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 45(1):174-177.
  • Chislock, M. F., O. Sarnelle, B. K. Olsen, E. Doster, and A. E. Wilson. 2013. Large effects of consumer offense on ecosystem structure and function. Ecology 94(11):2375-2380.
  • Olsen, B. K., C. Smith, M. Chislock, J. Kasinak, and E. Doster. 2013. Letter to the Editor: Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO) 2013 Annual Meeting: Students’ perspectives. ASLO Bulletin 22(3):83-84.
  • Wilson, A. E., M. F. Chislock, E. Doster, R. A. Wright, J. J. Kottwitz, H. Walz, and H. Rose. 2013. Toxic algae threaten livestock health. The Alabama Cattleman June 2013:16-17.
  • Chislock, M. F., E. Doster, R. A. Zitomer, and A. E. Wilson. 2013. Eutrophication: Causes, consequences, and controls in aquatic ecosystems. Nature Education Knowledge 4(4):10.
  • Havird, J. C., R. P. Henry, and A. E. Wilson. 2013. Altered expression of Na+/K+-ATPase and other osmoregulatory genes in the gills of euryhaline animals in response to salinity transfer: a meta-analysis of 59 quantitative PCR studies over 10 years. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology, Part D: 8(2):131-140.
  • Chislock, M. F., O. Sarnelle, L. M. Jernigan, and A. E. Wilson. 2013. Do high concentrations of microcystin prevent Daphnia control of phytoplankton? Water Research 47(6):1961-1970.
  • Wilson, A. E. and M. F. Chislock. 2013. Ecological control of cyanobacterial blooms in freshwater ecosystems. Invited book chapter in Cyanobacteria: Toxicity, ecology, and management. Editor: A. Ferrão-Filho. Nova Science Publishers, Inc., New York. pp. 213-221.
  • Vanderploeg, H. A., A. E. Wilson, T. H. Johengen, J. Dyble, O. Sarnelle, J. R. Leibig, S. D. Robinson, and G. P. Horst. 2013. The role of selective grazing by dreissenid mussels in promoting toxic Microcystis blooms and other changes in phytoplankton composition in the Great Lakes. Invited book chapter in Quagga and Zebra Mussels: Biology, Impacts, and Control, Second Edition. Editors: T. Nalepa and D. Schloesser. CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida. pp. 509-524.