Dr. McKenzie received a BS in Marine Science from the University of
Wollongong in 2004, and a PhD in Evolutionary Ecology from the University of New South Wales in 2010.
She is currently a Smithsonian Postdoctoral Fellow. She studies the transport of non-indigenous marine species on the hulls of commercial ships, in particular the effect of fluctuating environmental conditions experienced by trans-oceanic voyages. Using temperature and salinity, which vary dramatically over the course of a voyage, this project incorporates both theoretical and applied ecology. These results will be combined with computer modelling to help calculate invasion risk and inform
Dr. McKenzie investigates whether being broadly tolerant to environmental variables is a trait present at a species level, or if these traits are being selected for during the invasion process and are more prevalent in introduced populations. She is replicating this experiment across the Northern and Southern hemispheres to compare native and introduced populations on a global scale, utilizing collaborations with researchers in New Zealand, Australia and the United States.
Dr. McKenzie also supervises Smithsonian interns (undergraduate and postgraduate), who are employed to do both independent projects and work as research assistants.