Sarah Baird



Sarah Baird
Staff Research Associate


M.S. Ecology, UC Davis, 2019

B.S. Wildlife, Fish & Conservation Biology, UC Davis, 2014

Research Interests:

California’s unforgiving climate is partially due to intense droughts and human alterations including dams and water diversions. These changes directly affect the survival of California native fish species. I’m curious about how developing larval and juvenile anadromous fishes, including green sturgeon and Chinook salmon, are able to respond and adapt to their environment. Specifically, I study how environmental variables such as temperature, salinity, and water velocity affect physiological parameters like metabolic rates, growth rates, and swimming capabilities.

My master’s thesis investigated the predation risk of larval green and white sturgeon by nonnative predators (Largemouth Bass, Striped Bass, and Channel Catfish) common to the Sacramento-San Joaquin watershed.


Baird, S.E., A.E. Steel, D.E. Cocherell, J.B. Poletto, R. Follenfant and N.A. Fangue.2019. Experimental assessment of predation risk for juvenile green sturgeon, Acipenser medirostris, by two predatory fishes. J. Applied Ichthyology

Baird, S.E., Cocherell, D.E., Cech, J.J. Jr., and Fangue, N.A. 2018. Native Chinook Salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha and non-native Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis Prefer Similar Water Temperatures. J. Fish Biology.

Poletto, J.B., B. Martin, E. Danner, S.E. Baird, D.E. Cocherell, N.Hamda, J.J. Cech Jr. and N.A. Fangue. 2016. Assessment of multiple stressors on the growth of larval green sturgeon (Acipenser medirostris): Implications for recruitment and management of early life history stages. J. Fish Biology.

Poletto, J.B., D.E. Cocherell, S.E. Baird, T.X. Nguyen, V. Cabrera-Stagno, A.P. Farrell, and N.A. Fangue.  2015. Unusual aerobic performance at high temperatures in juvenile Chinook salmon, Oncorhynchus tshawytscha.  Conservation Physiology.

Verhille, C.E., Poletto,J.B., Cocherell, D.E., DeCourten, B., Baird, S., Cech, J.J. Jr., and Fangue, N.A. (2014). Larval green and white sturgeon swimming performance in relation to water diversion flows. Conservation Physiology 2, doi:10.1093/conphys/cou031.