Abel has a strong interest in native lampreys in coastal streams; his master’s thesis focused on lamprey early life-history, stock-recruitment, and sampling methodologies. Beyond lampreys, his research interests include aquatic ecology, fisheries biology, evolutionary processes, hydrological connectivity, and sustainable natural resource management. He has worked on a variety of fisheries-related projects in freshwater ecosystems across the Northwest. Recently he has assisted with studies aimed at mapping and quantifying changes in salmonid habitat in response to varying flow regimes and gravel extraction activities. In addition to his scientific background, Abel is an avid outdoorsman who spends much of his spare time hiking, fishing, and exploring streams.