About Us

Surge Marine Life is breaking down barriers on what it means to be a marine fish nursery.  We're family owned and operated, and we pride ourselves on our unwavering passion and dedication to bring the best quality captive bred marine life to our customers.  Proudly born and raised in Sarasota, Florida, USA in our biosecure hatchery facilities, our fish come direct from us to you in the shortest supply chain possible.  Surge fish are grown with passionate hard work and love, and we think that love translates really well from our home to yours.

Kevin Barden, Owner/Operator


Kevin has an undergraduate degree in Biology and Zoology from Michigan State University and a Masters in Sustainable Aquaculture from the University of Stirling in Scotland.  He completed his masters research at the University of Florida's Tropical Aquaculture Lab under the supervision of Dr Matthew L. Wittenrich, rearing the humble scooter blenny as his first foray into marine ornamental aquaculture.  At the time, Rising Tide was in it's infancy as a Seaworld initiative to pave the way for researchers to develop technologies to rear marine ornamental fish in captivity that had never been accomplished before.  In reference, at the time, tangs, angelfish, wrasses, and butterflyfish had never been reared in captivity.  Kevin stayed on after completing his degree to become a part of that initial team of researchers tasked with forever changing the way we think about marine aquariums and the sustainability of our industry.

Kevin's first personal success in aquaculture was rearing the melanurus wrasse in a home aquaculture setup, the first ornamental wrasse species ever raised in captivity.  After bringing this technology to the university and repeating the success, this work has paved the way for other wrasses to be reared in captivity, and it felt like we were really starting to figure things out.

In 2015, our colleagues in Hawaii had done the impossible; they successfully aquacultured yellow tang.  Dr Chad Callan and his team at the Oceanic Institute were successful in rearing the first tang species in captivity in the world after nearly 20 years of research.  We knew we needed boots on the ground in Hawaii to properly replicate their success.  Kevin flew over that week and spent several days observing and learning the different techniques that were instrumental in their success.  Upon returning to Florida, it was a mere six months later when our team at UF was successful in raising the Pacific blue tang, infamously referred to as "Dory".

Kevin was then approached by Biota to go back to Hawaii to develop and operate their new Hawaii facility.  In just a few short years they managed to transform yellow tang production from a research scale to the commercial scale operation it is today. 

With a growing family and roots in Florida he decided the time had come to move back home and take on his greatest challenge yet in Surge Marine Life. 


Dr Marion Hauville, Owner/Operator

Born and raised in Normandy, France, Marion has always had a passion for science and nature.  She received her PhD from the University of Stirling in Scotland while conducting her field research at the Mote Marine Laboratory Aquaculture Park in Sarasota Florida.  Her research focused on live feeds, larviculture and broodstock nutrition.
She then went on as a post doctoral researcher at the University of Florida's Tropical Aquaculture Lab developing protocols for rearing copepod species  and evaluating their use in aquaculture. From here she joined Kevin in moving to Hawaii to become Biota Hawaii's Live Feeds Manager and was pivotal in the success of the commercialization of the yellow tang through optimizations in live feed production efficiencies.

Mother of two small children by day and live feed culturist by night, Marion always has her hands full of messes, and is forever appreciated for it.