Dr. Clark Hubbs' Home Page

Dr. Hubbs passed away on February 3, 2008. An obituary and details about the February 8 memorial services are available here.

The Hubbs Ichthyological Society was founded to honor Dr. Hubbs and continue his legacy.

Clark Hubbs
click for high resolution copy of
this image illustrating his uncanny ability to walk
on water, a talent which undoubtedly contributed
to his success as an ichthyologist.

(find more about Clark at Section of Integrative Biology)

Clark Hubbs was born 15 March 1921 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the son of Carl L. Hubbs and Laura C. Hubbs. During the 1930's the Hubbs family made field collecting trips to Arkansas, Florida, and the Great Basin. Carl Hubbs established an "allowance" for each child based on the success of the collections; 5 for each species, $1 if it was a new taxon, and $5 if it was a new genus (one of the last each in 1934 and 1938 in Nevada). During the 1939 summer, Clark Hubbs was employed as a field Technician for the Michigan Institute for Fisheries Research at the salary of 40/hour. He obtained a B.A. in Zoology in 1942 from the University of Michigan. During the 1942 summer, he served as stream survey leader for western Massachusetts. Shortly after that he was drafted into the army. He served in the G-2 (intelligence) section of the 96th Infantry Division Headquarters. He had four MOs: combat infantryman, intelligence scout, topographic draftsman, and aerial photo interpreter. Fortunately, he used only the last two during combat. The 96th Division was involved in the invasion of Leyte (Philippines) and Okinawa. During that Okinawa action the division (initially 16,000) received 20,000 casualties, but Division Headquarters had reasonably low casualties.

Following his desired honorable discharge in January 1946, Clark Hubbs enrolled at UCLA, Hopkins Marine Station, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and Leland Stanford Jr. University. He obtained his Ph.D. from Stanford in 1952. He had served as Acting Instructor of Biology at Hopkins Marine Station during the 1948 summer. He took a job as Instructor of Zoology at The University of Texas in 1949 (there was only one campus then). He became Assistant Professor (1952), Associate Professor (1957), Professor (1963), Chairman of the Division of Biological Sciences (1974), Professor (1976), Chairman of Zoology (1978), Professor (1986), The Clark Hubbs Regents Professor in Zoology (1988), and now is emeritus (1991) at that rank. His service as Biology Chair was relatively short as he determined what was needed to make it work. When his request for efficiency was denied, he resigned and told his replacement who got all the needed items before he assumed the task. He has served as Visiting Professor at the University of Oklahoma (1970 - 1984) and at Texas A&M University (1969 - 1983).

Clark Hubbs has served as President of: Southwestern Association of Naturalists (1966 - 1967), Texas Academy of Sciences (1972 - 1973), Texas Organization for Endangered Species (1978 - 1979), American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists (1987), and American Institute of Fisheries Research Biologists (1995 - 1997). He has served as editor for the Texas Journal of Science (four years), Southwestern Naturalist, Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, and Copeia (fourteen years). Three fishes have scientific names after him. He holds the record for the most severe blue crab pinch--a hole through his right calf muscle. That kept him from active seining for six months and confused the Workman's Compensation bureaucrats. He has served on several boards: Bass Anglers Sportsman's Society (1974 - 1980), Texas Utilities Environmental Steering Committee (1971 - present), Rio Grande Fishes Recovery Team (1978 - present), Hubbs Sea World Research Institute (1985 - present), Texas Nature Conservancy (1988 - 1995), Glen Canyon Environmental Studies (1991 - 1996), U.T. Marine Sciences Institute (1992 - present), and the southwestern division of the Environmental Defence Fund (1997 - present). He has obtained awards and honors from the Texas Chapter of American Fisheries Society, American Fisheries Society, Texas Organization for Endangered Species, Texas Academy of Science, Sociedad Ictiologica Mexicana, and Southwestern Association of Naturalists. He is active in efforts to protect aquatic ecosystems.

Clark Hubbs has published more than 300 articles, primarily on fishes. His research has included taxonomic revisions, hybridization, geographic distribution, and gynogenetic reproduction. Much of his recent work has been on geographic variation of life history traits. He has recorded substanital variation in three traits for four species and two traits for two additional species. Dr. Hubbs' extensive fish collections made throughout Texas and surrounding regions since coming to Texas, as well as other collections brought with him when he came, are deposited in the Ichthyology Division of the Texas Natural History Collections of the Texas Memorial Museum at The University of Texas at Austin.

Clark Hubbs is notorious for his items of fish (and environmental) clothing (socks, belts, shirts, hats, and t-shirts). His collection includes a copy of The Clark Hubbs Symposium t-shirt (from the 1993 ASIH meeting in Austin) with more than 1000 signatures. The photo of him in this shirt that is included below was taken in December of 1996. Click on the photo for a higher-resolution version.

Clark Hubbs

Other photos of a younger Clark Hubbs are also available here, as is the following one of him presenting a paper on 2 November, 2000 at the International Symposium on Freshwater Fish Conservation in Albufeira, Montechoro (Algarve), Portugal.

Clark Hubbs  

(click for a high-res copy)

More information about Dr. Hubbs may be obtained from his pages in the Section of Integrative Biology at University of Texas at Austin, and a biographical sketch can be found in Copeia 2000(2):619-622. He may be reached by e-mail to: hubbs@mail.utexas.edu.

last modified: Thursday, 07-Jun-2012 11:18:14 CDT