Michael Louison, Ph.D.

Photo of Michael LouisonAssistant Professor of Biology

Office: Voigt Science Hall 223A

Phone: (618) 537-6096

Email: mjlouison@mckendree.edu


Ph.D., Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2018)

M.S., Biology, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh (2013)

B.A., Biology and Educational Studies, Ripon College (2007)


Research Interests


Fisheries Conservation

Contemporary Evolution of Animals

Behavioral and Physiological Response of Animals to their Environment

Impacts of Microplastic Exposure on Aquatic Animals




         Louison, M.J., LaRochelle, L., and S.J. Cooke (2023, in production).  Effectiveness of barotrauma mitigation

                  methods in bluegill and black crappie.  Fisheries Management and Ecology

         Bieber, J.F., Louison, M.J., and C.D. Suski (2023, in production).  Capture is predicted by behavior and size, not

                  metabolism, in Muskellunge (Esox masquinongy).  North American Journal of Fisheries Management.

  Brand, N.R. (+*), Knoebel, E.M. (+*), Ross, R.M. (+*), VanPutte, R.D., and M.J. Louison (2022).  Air exposure leads

           to short term reflex impairment, but does not impact blood physiology, in angled channel catfish Ictalurus 

           punctatus.  Fisheries Research 256: 106490

  Bieber, J.F., LaRochelle, L., Cooke, S.J., Suski, C.D., and M.J. Louison (2022).  Post-release locomotor activity of

           ice-angled northern pike.  Fisheries research 256: 106481

  Card, J.T., Louison, M.J., Bieber, J.F., Suski, C.D., and C.T. Hasler (2022).  An examination of freezing in yellow

           perch (Perca flavescens) folloing ice fishing using a histological approach.  Journal of Applied Ichthyology 38:


Lawrence, M.J., Jeffries, K.M., Cooke, S.J., Enders, E.C., Hasler, C.T., Somers, C.M., Suski, C.D., and M.J. Louison 

         (2022).  Catch and release ice fishing: Status, issues, and research needs.  Transactions of the American 

         Fisheries Society 151(3): 322-332.

Althoff, A.L. (+*), Suski, C.D., and M.J. Louison (2021).  Depth-based barotrauma severity, reflex  

impairment, and stress response in two species of ice-angled fish.  Fisheries Management and Ecology

Keiling, T., Louison, M.J., and C.D. Suski (2020).  Big, hungry fish get the lure: Size and food availability determine

capture over boldness and exploratory behaviors.  Fisheries Research 227:105554.

Keiling, T., Louison, M.J., and C.D. Suski (2020) Behavioral phenotype does not predict habitat occupancy or angling

capture of largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides).  Canadian Journal of Zoology 98(6): 399-409.

Althoff, A.L. (+*), Hasler, C.T., and M.J. Louison (2020).  Impact of retrieval time and hook type on hooking depth in

ice-angled northern pike caught on tip-ups.  Fisheries Research 225:105502.

Louison, M.J., Stein, J.A., and C.D. Suski (2019).  The role of social network behavior, swimming  

performance, and fish size in the determination of angling vulnerability in bluegill.  Behavioral Ecology and

Sociobiology 73:139.

Bieber, J.F., Louison, M.J., Stein, J.A., and C.D. Suski (2019).  Impact of ice‐angling and handling on  

swimming performance in bluegill and largemouth bass.  North American Journal of Fisheries Management

139(6): 1301-1310. 

Louison, M.J., Suski, C.D., and J.A. Stein (2019).  Largemouth bass use prior experience, but not information from

experienced conspecifics, to avoid capture by anglers.  Fisheries Management and Ecology 26(6): 600-610.

Louison, M.J., Hage, V.M., Stein, J.A., and C.D. Suski (2019).  Quick learning, quick capture:  

Largemouth bass that rapidly learn an association task are more likely to be captured by recreational anglers. 

Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 73:23 

Louison, M.J., Stein, J.A., and C.D. Suski (2018).  Metabolic phenotype is not associated with  

vulnerability to angling in bluegill sunfish.  Canadian Journal of Zoology 96(11): 1264-1271. 

Winter, H.N., Louison, M.J., Stein, J.A., and C.D. Suski (2018).  Response of bluegill to variable exercise and  

air exposure at cold temperatures: Implications for angling conservation. Environmental Biology of Fishes

101(12): 1657-1667 

Louison, M.J., Jeffrey, J.D., Suski, C.D., and J.A. Stein (2018).  Sociable bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus)  

are selectively captured by recreational anglers.  Animal Behaviour 142: 129-137 

Louison, M.J., Adhikari, S., Stein, J.A., and C.D. Suski (2017).  Hormonal responsiveness to stress is negatively

associated with vulnerability to angling capture in fish.  Journal of Experimental Biology 220(14): 2529-2535. 

Louison, M.J., Hasler, C.T., Raby, G.D., Suski, C.D., and J.A. Stein (2017).  Chill out: Physiological responses to

winter ice-angling in two temperate freshwater fishes.  Conservation Physiology 5(1): cox027. 

Louison, M.J., Hasler, C.T., Fenske, M.M., Suski, C.D., and J.A. Stein (2017).  Physiological Effects of ice-angling 

capture and handling on northern pike, Esox lucius.  Fisheries Management and Ecology 24(1): 10-18. 

Louison, M.J., and R.S. Stelzer (2016).  Use of first-order tributaries by brown trout (Salmo trutta) as nursery habitat

in a coldwater stream network.  Ecology of Freshwater Fish 25(1): 133-140. 


(+*) Indicates a McKendree University Student Co-Author


Courses Taught


Principles of Biology I - Cell and Molecular Biology

Scientific Communication



Conservation Biology

Fish Biology and Conservation

Animal Behavior

Animal Physiology

Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy


Teaching Philosophy


I think the term that defines my teaching approach best is accessibility.  I believe in working personally with students, and being quick to respond to questions and needs.  While I have office hours posted, my door is always open for any student to talk about class, or discuss potential independent research opportunities.  Ultimately, while college classes have a lot of terminology and verbage to understand, I always look to connect the themes of class to things that are actually happening in our environment today.


Organizations & Memberships

Animal Behavior Society

American Fisheries Society