Richard C. Harrel


Richard C. Harrel

Distinguished Emeritus Professor of Biology

Phone: 409-880-8255

Office: 205-10 Hayes Biology Building

Courses taught: General Biology (Biol 1406, 1407), Invertebrate Zoology (Biol 3460), Limnology (Biol 4430), Ecology (Biol 4460), Ecology of Polluted Waters (Biol 5470)

Dr. Harrel's research interests includes the ecology of freshwater and estuarine macroinvertebrates, the biomonitoring of toxic substances in aquatic environments, and the ecological succession of oxbow lakes.

The outstanding teaching and research career of Dr. Harrel has netted him several prestigious awards. He was recently named the 2003 Distinguished Faculty Lecturer. He will give a talk entitled "Environmental History of the Lower Neches River: From Clean to Polluted to Recovering" on October 20, 2003, in the University Theatre. He also received the 2000-2001 University Scholar Award by Lamar University. He is also very active in the community concerning environmental issues and heads Clean Air and Water, Inc. in Beaumont.


The freshwater jellyfish, Craspedacusta. Picture courtesy of David Hicks

Selected publications:

Weiss, J., M. Rylander, and R.C. Harrel. 1991. Distribution and depth preferences of searobins (Teleostei: Triglidae) in the northwestern Gulf of Mexico. Texas Jour. Sci., A-3:39-44.

Harrel, R.C. and M. Hall. 1991. Macrobenthic community structure before and after pollution abatement in the Neches River estuary, Texas. Hydrobiologia. 211:241-252.

Harrel, R.C. and M. McConnell. 1992. The clam Rangia cuneata as a standard biomonitor of hazardous substances in Gulf Coast and southern Atlantic estuaries and inland waters. Jour. Hazardous Materials. 32:323.

Harrel, R.C. 1993. Origin and decline of the estuarine clam Rangia cuneata in the Neches River, Texas, Amer. Malacological Bull., 10:153-159.

Harrel, R.C., D. Bechler, and R. Ogren. 1994. First record of the land planarian Geoplana arkalabamensis (Turbellaria: Tricladida: Terricola) with a review of other species reported from the state. Texas Jour. Sci., 46:45-49.

Bechler, D. and R.C. Harrel. 1994. Notes on the biology and occurrence of Astyanax mexicana (Characidae, Teleostei) in southeast Texas. Texas Jour. Sci., 46: 293-294.
McConnell, M. and R.C. Harrel. 1995. The estuarine clam Rangia cuneata as a biomonitor of heavy metals under laboratory and field conditions. Amer. Malacological Bull., 11:191-201.

Harrel, R.C. and M. McConnell. 1995. The estuarine clam Rangia cuneata as a biomonitor of dioxins and furans in the Neches River, Taylor Bayou, and Fence Lake, Texas. Estuaries. 18 (1B):264-270.

Harrel, R.C., M. McConnell, and R. Masters. 1998. Reproductive stage and osmoregulation ability of the estuarine clam Rangia cuneata. Texas Jour. Sci., Vol. 50:155- 162.

Harrel, R.C. and S. Smith. 2002. Macrobenthic community structure before, during, and after implementation of the Clean Water Act in the Neches River estuary (Texas). Hydrobiologia. 474: 213-222.

Harrel, R.C. 2002. New distribution record and ecological notes on the freshwater hydrozoan Craspedacusta sowerbii in southeast Texas. Texas Jour. Sci. 54: 357-362.

Harrel, R.C. 2004. Systematic and ecological notes on Tubificoides heterochaetus (Oligochaeta: Tubificidae) from the Neches River estuary, Texas. Texas J. Sci. 56: 263-267.