Pete Klimley

Pete Klimley

Position Title
Adjunct Professor

Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology, College of Ag. and Environ. Sciences
John Muir Institute of the Environment

1334 Academic Surge

Profile Introduction

Predator-prey, interactions, orientation mechanisms, and magnetoreception among marine fishes; biotelemetry.

Research Interests

Dr. Klimley oversees research conducted in the Biotelemetry Laboratory at UC Davis. He has been involved in the development of many facets of animal tracking system from the origination of algorithms for inferring geographical position based on irradiance and magnetic field measurements to the creation of stand-alone receivers that detect the identity of species passing by carrying coded acoustic beacons. Under his guidance, undergraduates, graduate students, and staff utilize sophisticated electronic tagging equipment to study the physiology, behavior, and ecology of aquatic and terrestrial species. Members of the Biotelemetry Laboratory have conducted studies ranging from (1) use of two dimensional VRAP and VPS arrays to study reproduction in abalones and white shark predation, (2) utilizing emg transmitters to record tails beats of trout to record their energetic output during pulsed flow for electrical energy generation and 3-axis acceleration sensors to monitor anti-predator behavior in ant eaters, and (3) satellite transmitters to record optimal foraging by brown bears and pop-up release satellite transmitters that recorded the diving behavior of hammerhead sharks. Much of the work is conservation oriented in the Biotelemetry Laboratory.

Grad Group Affiliations

  • Animal Behavior
  • Ecology Graduate Group

Specialties / Focus

  • Behavior and Conservation
  • Physiology and Behavior


  • WFC 10 Conservation Biology (Guest Lecture, Shark Conservation), Fall
  • WFC 121 Physiology of Fishes (Guest Lecture, Electro-reception), Winter
  • WFC 100 Vetebrate Field Methods (Guest Lecture, Marine Vertebrate Techniques, Spring
  • EGG 290 Ecology of Animal Movements (given on alternating years), Spring
  • EGG 290 Ecology of Animal Movements (Seminar, on Alternating Years), Spring


  • Biotelemetry Laboratory
    • Battleson, Ryan (Junior Specialist, UCD)Chapman, Eric (Research Associate, UCD) Hearn, Alex (Project Scientist, UCD) Kanive, Paul (Graduate Student, Montana State) Miller, Emily (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD) Madrak, Sheila (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD/SFSU) Mora, Ethan (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD) Nafus, Melia (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD) Poletto, Jamilyn (Graduate Student, Animal Behavior Graduate Group, UCD) Sandstrom, Phil (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD) Singer, Gabe (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD) Steel, Ana (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD) Thomas, Mike (Research Associate, UCD) Rowlands, Myfanwy (Graduate Student, Animal Behavior Graduate Group, UCD) Yack, Tina (Graduate Student, Ecology Graduate Group, UCD/SFSU)

Professional Societies

  • Animal Behavior Society
  • American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists
  • American Fisheries Society
  • Sigma Xi


  • 1982 PhD Scripps Institution of Oceanography - Marine Biology University of California, San Diego
  • 1976 MS Biological Oceanography University of Miami
  • 1970 BS Zoology State University of New York


Klimley, A.P. In press. The Biology of Sharks and Rays. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Ketchum, J.T., F. Galván-Magaña, and A.P. Klimley. In press. Distribution, segregation, environmental preferences, and habitat use of whale sharks (Rhincodon typus) in the southwestern Gulf of California. Environmental Biology of Fishes.

Steel, A.E., P.T. Sandstrom, P.L. Brandes, and A.P. Klimley. 2012. Migratory route selection by juvenile Chinook salmon at the Delta Cross Channel, and the role of water velocity and individual movement patterns. Special Issue, Environmental Biology of Fishes, DOI 10.1007/s1064-012-9992-6.

Teo, S.L.H, P.T. Sandstrom, E.D Chapman, R.E. Null, K. Brown, A.P. Klimley, B.A Block. 2011. Archival and acoustic tags reveal the post-spawning migrations, diving behavior, and thermal habitat of hatchery-origin Sacramento River steelhead kelts (Oncorhynchus mykiss). Environmental Biology of Fishes, DOI 10.1007/s10641-011-9938-4.

Grigg, E.K., A.P. Klimley, S.G. Allen. D.E. Green, D.L Elliott-Fisk, and H. Markowitz. 2012. Foraging distribution of harbor seals Phoca vitulina richardii in a highly-impacted estuary. Journal of Mammalogy, 93: 282-293.

Kelly, J.T. and A.P. Klimley. 2012 Relating the swimming movements of green sturgeon to the movement of water currents. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 93: 151-167.

Cocherell, S.A., D.E. Cocherell, G. J. Jones, J.B. Miranda, L.C. Thompson, J.J. Cech, Jr., AP. Klimley. 2011. Rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss energetic responses to pulsed flows in the American River, California, assessed by electromyogram telemetry. Environmental Biology of Fishes., 90: 29-41.

Bessudo, S., G.A. Soler, A.P. Klimley, J. Ketchum, R. Arauz, A. Hearn, A. Guzmán, and B. Galmettes. 2012. Vertical and horizontal movements of the scalloped hammerhead shark (Sphyrna lewini) around Malpelo and Cocos Islands (Tropical Eastern Pacific) using satellite telemetry. Boletín de Investigaciones Marinas and Costas, 40: 91-106.

Campos, B., M. Fish, G. Jones, R. Rily, A.J. Allen, A.P. Klimley, and J.J. Cech. 2009. Movement of brown smoothhound sharks in Tomales Bay, California: effects diel and tidal cycles. Environmental Biology of Fishes. 85: 3-13.

Heublein, J., J.T. Kelly, C.E. Crocker, and A.P. Klimley. 2009. Migration of green sturgeon in Sacramento River. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 84:245–258.

Jorgensen, S.J., A.P. Klimley, and A. Muhlia-Melo. 2009. Diving of scalloped in anoxic zone in Gulf of California. Journal of Fish Biology, 74:1682–1687.

Jorgensen, S.J., C.A. Reeb, T. K. Chapple, S. Anderson, C. Perle, S.R. Van Sommeran, C. Fritz-Cope, A.C. Brown, A.P. Klimley, B.A. Block. 2009. Fidelity, homing and population structure revealed using electronic and genetic tag in white sharks of the Eastern Pacific. Proceeding of the Royal Society B., 1155: 1-11.

Kelly, J.T., A.P. Klimley, and C.E. Crocker. 2007. Movements of green sturgeon, Acipenser mediostris, in the San Francisco Estuary, California. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 29: 281-195.

Jeffres, C.A., A.P. Klimley, J.E. Merz, and J.J. Cech, Jr. 2006. Movement of Sacramento sucker (Catostomus occidentalis) and hitch (Lavinia exilicauda) during a spring release of water from Camanche Dam in the Mokelume River, California. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 75: 365-373.

Klimley, A.P., J.T. Kelly, and R.L. Kihslinger. 2005. Directional and non-directional movements of bat rays, Myliobatis californica, in Tomales Bay, California. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 74:79-88.

Klimley, A.P., J.E. Richert, and S.J. Jorgensen. 2005. The home of blue water fish. American Scientist, 93:42-49.

Klimley, A.P. 2003. The Secret Life of Sharks: A Leading Biologist Reveals the Mysteries of Shark Behavior. Simon and Schuster, New York, 292 pp.

Klimley, A.P., S.J. Jorgensen, A. Muhlia-Melo, and S.C. Beavers. 2003. Movements of yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares) to and from Espiritu Santo Seamount in Gulf of California. Fisheries Bulletin, 101: 684-692.

Klimley, A.P., S. C. Beavers, T.H. Curtis, and S.J. Jorgensen. 2002. Movements and swimming behavior of three species of sharks in La Jolla Canyon, California. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 63: 117-135.

Klimley AP, Le Boeuf BJ, Cantara KM, Richert JE, Davis SF, Van Sommeran S and JT Kelly. 2001. The hunting strategy of white sharks at a pinniped colony. Marine Biology. 13:617-636

Klimley, A.P. and S.C. Beavers. 1998. Playback of ATOC-type signal to bony fishes to evaluate phonotaxis. Journal of Acoustic Society of America, 104:2506-2510.

Klimley, A.P., F. Voegeli, S.C. Beavers, and B.J. Le Boeuf. 1998. Automated listening stations for tagged marine fishes. Marine Technology Journal, 32: 94-101

Klimley, A.P. 1994. The predatory behavior of the white shark. American Scientist, 82:122-133 (won Silver Excel Award for best feature article of year).