Vol. 64, No. 2 | Summer 2018

2019 Grant Awardees


Melissa Hughes, 1st Member-at-Large
Chair, 2019 Student Research Grant Committee

We are pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019 Student Research Grants and the Developing Nations Research Awards. We received many high-quality proposals, but as in previous years, the number of applications exceeded the number we could fund. We received a total of 168 applications across award categories (up from 95 last year), and were able to award funding to 57.

Each proposal was reviewed independently by at least 2 referees, who provided evaluations and constructive feedback for the student grant writers. As always, members of the Society went above and beyond to provide constructive reviews. The Research Grant Committee extends a very heartfelt thank you to the following referees:

Anita Aisenberg,Maria Albo,Jimena Aracena,Robert Arndt,Doris Audet,Suzanne C. Baker,Harold R. Bauer,Ximena E Bernal,Alexis Billings,Yadok Biplang,Amanda Bishop,Pierre-Paul Bitton,Mauricio Cantor,Kenneth Chapin,Gloriana Chaverri,Ylenia Chiari,Anne B. Clark,Barbara Clucas,Elizabeth R. Congdon,Thomas A. Contreras,Catherine Ann Cornwell,Blair R. Costelloe,Leslie J. Curren,Mikel Delgado,Kim C. Derrickson,Teresa L. Dzieweczynski,Victoria Fishlock,Gabriel Francescoli,Matthew J. Fuxjager,Gabriella Gall,Jennifer M. Gleason,Eliane GonÁalves-de-Freitas,Stacy A Goodman,Michelle Grimes,Andrea Sue Grunst,Sarah Guindre-Parker,Morgan Gustison,Rebecca E. Hale,Shala J. Hankison,Jennifer Hellmann,Heather M Hill,Antoniya Hubancheva,Kimberly L. Hunter,Anne Jacobs,Susan Jenks,Kevin A. Judge,SESHADRI Kadaba Shamanna,Philip Kanfush,Clint Kelly,Lynna Kiere,David Kikuchi,Sarah R.B. King,Wendy J. King,Kelly Kissane,Adam Kohm,Ipek Gokce Kulahci,Gururaja KV,Joseph M Leese,Stuart Leonard,Isaac Ligocki,Russell Ligon,Bernard Lohr,Scott Lovell,Jay Mager,James R. Malcolm,Lilian Manica,Sue Margulis,Jennifer A Mather,Kimberley Mathot,Kira McEntire,Kevin J. McGraw,Tamra Mendelson,Abraham Miller,Darren Minier,Douglas W. Mock,Molly R. Morris,Gwendolyn Murdock,Paul M. Nealen,Melissa J Nelson Slater,Brian G. Palestis,Bret Pasch,Stephen C. Pratt,Andrea Presotto,Mariana Pueta,Claudia M Rauter,Michael Reichert,Briseida Resende,Clare C. Rittschof,RaphaÎl RoyautÈ,Patricia L. Schwagmeyer,William Searcy,Brett M. Seymoure,Zachary Shaffer,Delia S Shelton,Melissa R. Shyan-Norwalt,Joel W.G. Slade,Robert B. Srygley,Malini Suchak,Katerina Vlcek Thompson,Kristyn Vitale,Charles Walcott,Sheryl Walker,Eric L Walters,Heather Watts,Stacey Weiss,Erica L. Westerman,Danielle J. Whittaker,Larry Williams,Timothy F. Wright,Heather S Zimbler-DeLorenzo

We were helped immensely by Lorena McMahon and Adam Kohm at SPLTrak, who administered the online grant submission and review system that ran very smoothly. Chris Templeton (2nd Member-at-Large) and Suzy Renn (3rd Member-at-Large) made important contributions during the entire process. Thank you to them also. Most importantly, we want to thank all the members of the Society who have supported this program over the years and who have donated funds to make this program such a success.



Iverson, Autumn, UC Davis, Migration Across Years: How Flexible are the Connections for a North American Songbird?


Mallory DeChant, Texas Tech University, Optimizing Vigilance with Pavlovian Instrumental Transfer in Detection Canines


Miranda Strasburg, Miami University, Understanding the effects of environmental stressors on parasite and amphibian behavior and subsequent infection rates


Taylor Hersh, Dalhousie University, An investigation of the evolutionary dynamics of Eastern Caribbean sperm whale dialects


Nicholas Antonson, Differential gene expression mediates behavioral and physiological plasticity in response to the intensity of host-nestmate competition in nestlings of a generalist brood parasite
Elizabeth Besozzi, Home Range Resource Use by Volcano Juncos   
Stephen Bovio, Investigating the role of postmating-prezygotic sexual selection in hybridizing swordtails
Joseph Burant, Assessing the role of stochasticity in generating behavioural individuality in the absence of genetic and environmental variation
Ying Chen, Understanding Varation in Advertisement Call Attributes in Spring Peepers (Pseudacris crucifer)
Devin Chen, Lemur paparazzi: Occupancy Modeling of Lemur Communities Using Arboreal Camera Traps in Southeastern Madagascar.   
Elizabeth Clifton, An empirical and experimental test of current combat models
Grace Davis, Leading According to Need in a Spider Monkey Fission-Fusion Society
Allegra DePasquale, Foraging Niche Divergence Between Color Vision Phenotypes in Wild White-Faced Capuchins
Rachael DiSciullo, Determining Total Sexual Selection on Male Song in Northern House Wrens
Jessica Dreyer, The Transition to Nutritional Independence in an Insectivorous Bat
Alexandra Duffy, How Does Evolutionary History Influence Chemical Recognition and Learning?   
Fernanda Duque, Sexually dimorphic behavioral and AVT responses to High-frequency song in the Ecuadorian Hillstar
Mysia Dye, Investigating Shifts in Reproductive Isolation Driven by Environmental Change
Taylor Evans, Integrating social and ecological phenotypes
Jacob Feder, The influence of older siblings on juvenile development and health in geladas
Elizabeth George, Mechanisms of Aggression in a Competitive Female Songbird: Do Females Respond to Acute Social Challenges by Modulating Neural Steroid Processing and Sensitivity?
ZoÎ Goldsborough, The Role of Coordination in Handclasp Grooming in Semi-Wild Chimpanzees
Kylie Hampton, The Effect of Mating on Immunity in Female Crickets: Does Genotype Matter?
Braelei Hardt, Assessing the Influences of Habitat Structure on Bird Song Propagation
Dominique Hellmich, Understanding the Fitness Consequences of Individual Variation in Behavioral Flexibility
Mark Janowiecki, The specificity and influence of vibrations on subterranean termite collective tunneling behavior
Ludmila Kumpan, How Do Hormones Interact to Influence Social Ability in Lemurs? Implications for the Evolution of Sociality in Primates.
Zachary Laubach, Toxoplasma gondii infection in a wild carnivore and effects on host behavior and survival.
Michelle Lavery, Does being reared with their preferred environmental enrichments improve the welfare status and cognitive performance of laboratory zebrafish (Danio rerio)?
Emily Levy, Effects of Early-Life Adversity on Body Size and Immune Function in a Wild Primate
Molly McDermott, The Dynamics of Reproductive Behavior: Using Fertilization Networks to Uncover Drivers of Evolutionary Change in North American Barn Swallows (Hirundo rustica erythrogaster)   
Molly McEntee, Complex genitalia, allied sexual coercion, and female mate choice in wild bottlenose dolphins of Shark Bay, Australia
Stephanie Menjivar, Sex and the City:Does Previous Exposure to Urban Noise   Pollution Change Mating Behavior in Male and Female Chorus Frogs?
Amy Miles, Title: With Experience Comes Wisdom… and Prolactin: Understanding the Mechanisms of Increased Breeding Success with Pair Experience
Tracy Montgomery, Adaptive Function of Social Play Behavior
Christina Nord, A Cross-Troop Analysis of Social Learning in Wild, Non-provisioned Vervet Monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythrus)
Rachel Petersen, Mechanisms of Pre- and Post-copulatory Female Mate Choice in a Non-human Primate
Imran Razik, Individual Variation in Cooperation in the Common Vampire Bat (Desmodus rotundus)
Nicola Rossi, Effects of global warming on mechanisms of sexual selection, reproductive effort and social dynamics of Tropidurus spinulosus
Michael Rowley, Investigating the Cognitive Impairment Hypothesis in Wild Hybrid Populations
Amanda Savagian, The Role of Collective Signaling During Intergroup Conflict in a Cooperatively Breeding Bird
Sebastian Stockmaier, The Role of Sickness Behaviors on the Formation of a Cooperative Relationship
Katrina Switzer, The Physiological Mechanisms and Behavioral Functions of Dynamic Sexual Dichromatism in an Explosively Breeding Tropical Toad
Katherine Taylor, Genetic Underpinnings of Species-Specific Mating Songs in a Group of Insects 
Silvy van Kuijk, The Effects of Anthropogenic Noise on Acoustic Communication and Social Behavior of Primates in the Ecuadorian Amazon.
Grace Vaziri, Assessing the effect of urban food supplementation on bird-parasite interactions in the Gal·pagos Islands   
Whitney Walkowski, Retinal Physiology Influences Mate Choice Behavior in the Green Tree Frog (Hyla cinerea)
William Waller, Identification of Candidate Genes Underlying Variation of Courtship Song in a Diverse Group of Hawaiian Crickets (Genus:Laupala)
Rebecca Westwick, Aggression in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera) May Be Socially Transmitted Through Familial Care That Is Mediated by Multiple Pheromones
Sierra Williams, Long-term behavioral effects of simulated early infection in Zebra Finches
Russell Winter, How resource availability on the natal territory influences the decision to help in the cooperatively breeding acorn woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)



Debottam Bhattacharjee, Understanding the effects of human socialisation on behavioural outcomes of Indian free-ranging dogs
Jo„o do Valle Pereira, Cooperation and competition on the human side of a dolphin-fishermen interaction
Jo„o Menezes, Eyes in the back of their heads: investigating the function of pygmy-owls' false eyes
Rayane Oliveira, Effects of natural and anthropogenic noise on song in tropical mockingbirds
Luis Eduardo Robledo Ospina, COLOUR FIDELITY IN PREY SELECTION BY THE ARANEOPHAGIC WASPTrypoxylon (Trypargilum) tridentatum tridentatum
Alexandre Marcel Silva Machado, Individual heterogeneity in the dynamics of dolphin-fishermen foraging



Congratulations to the recipients of the conference travel awards. These awards were administered by Chris Templeton, with the assistance of Melissa Hughes and Suzy Renn (the Members at Large or MALs). For both the Latin American Travel Awards and Graduate Student Travel Grants, two MALs independently rated each abstract, and those scores were combined with ratings of the submitted CVs to rank applications. Within those rankings, ties were broken by giving preference to PhD students and those who had not previously attended ABS. This year, we received many more deserving applications than we were able to fund, and appreciate the widespread interest in these awards. We were able to fund 5 of 22 applications for the Latin American Travel Awards, with each award set to $2000. LATA awardees for the 2019 conference are: [insert awardee names and institutions here] We were able to fund 24 of 188 applications for the Graduate Student Travel Grants, with each award set at $500. GSTG awardees for the 2019 conference are: [insert awardee names and institutions here]

We were able to fund 5 of 17 applications for the Latin American Travel Awards. Award amounts varied this year to reflect travel costs from the students’ varied locations. LATA awardees for the 2018 conference are:

Victor Aguiar de S. Penha, Federal University of Paran·
Patricia Torres, Universidad de los Andes
Lia Kajiki, University of BrasÌlia
Jimena Lois Milevicich, Universidad de Buenos Aires
Francesca Protti Sanchez, Universidad de Costa Rica

We were able to fund 24 of 88 applications for the Graduate Student Travel Grants, with each award set at $500.  GSTG awardees for the 2018 conference are:

Victor Aguiar de S. Penha, Federal University of Paran·
Tracy Burkhard, University of Texas - AustinUniversity of Texas - Austin
Lauren Cirino, University of Florida
Katie Schroeder, University of Massachusetts
Sarah Westrick, University of Michigan
Lia Kajiki, University of BrasÌlia
Jimena Lois Milevicich, Universidad de Buenos Aires
Francesca Protti Sanchez, Universidad de Costa Rica
Angela Riley, Oklahoma State University
Connie Rojas, Michigan State University
Shailee Shah, Columbia University
Katie Talbott, Indiana University
Iv·n Beltr·n, Macquarie University
Debottam Bhattacharjee, Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Kolkata
Keren Klass, University of Toronto
Monica A. Mowery, University of Toronto Scarborough
Evangeline Rose, University of Maryland Baltimore County
Eduardo Sampaio, MARE - Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre
Annemarie van der Marel, University of Manitoba
Ben Vernasco, Virginia Tech
Rachael DiSciullo, Illinois State University
Elene Haave Audet, University of Alberta
Emilie Lefol, UniversitÈ de Sherbrooke
Monique Pipkin, Pennsylvania State University
Tyler Pyle, Graduate Student
Patricia Torres, Universidad de los Andes
Eric Wice, Rice University
Sandra Winters, New York University
Nicholai Hensley, University of California, Santa Barbara
Hieu Pham, The university of Melbourne



The Caregiver Travel Grant award provides financial assistance for active ABS members whose caregiving responsibilities for dependent persons would otherwise limit their ability to attend and present at the annual ABS meeting. Dependents include but are not limited to young children and aging parents and awarded funds can be used for care-giving responsibilities necessary while you're at the conference including expenses incurred for care at home or at the meeting as well as travel expenses for the dependent. Perhaps due to the increased awareness attributed to our recent survey (reported under “Caregiver Grant Survey”), we saw a substantial increase in the number of applicants for the Caregiver Travel Grant. As per the award description, we prioritized applicants presenting their work and adjusted the amount according to need (as estimated by career stage). We were able to award five graduate student members $500 each, four postdocs $350 each, two faculty $300 each and one ABS member from a developing nation was awarded $500. This distribution of funding allowed us to provide some assistance to all of the candidates who completed the application on time, were presenting at the meeting, and described a concrete need within the guidelines of the grant. The majority of these applicants described expenses surrounding childcare at the venue or travel to the venue, hence the executive committee will continue to evaluate the merits of onsite daycare at future venues. Awards were administered by Suzy Renn with assistance of Melissa Hughes and Chris Templeton (the Members at Large).



In 2015, ABS instituted the Caregiver Grant, with the goal of supporting members whose caregiving responsibilities might limit their ability to attend and present at ABS meetings. In the years since, we’ve been surprised at the small number of applications we’ve received, and to better understand why that might be, we conducted a short survey earlier this spring.

We received 181 responses – many thanks to all who participated! Overall, support for the program appears quite high, and we look forward to working with the membership to ensure we are maximizing its effect. Below is a brief summary of the survey results. We plan on discussing these results further at this year’s Business Meeting, but of course we welcome comments and suggestions before then as well.

The responses revealed that we clearly haven’t been doing enough to inform the membership about the grant: 59% were unaware that all ABS members (students, post-docs, faculty, etc.) are eligible; 53% were unaware that funds could be used for either dependent children or other dependent family members; 73% were unaware that funds could be used for expenses associated with caregiving for the dependent at home while the ABS member is at the conference; and 52% were unaware that funds could be used to help support bringing dependent family members to the conference. Several folks noted in their comments that they were only learning about the details of this grant in the survey itself. Obviously, we need to do more to ensure that members who would benefit from these funds know to apply for them.

Most of the respondents (97%) had not previously applied for a Caregiver Grant. Of these, 49% had not applied because they did not have any dependent family members. Of the remaining 90 respondents, the responses similarly make clear the need for us to do a better job advertising this opportunity: when asked why they hadn’t applied, 47% said they were previously unaware of the grant; 29% didn’t realize they were eligible for the grant; 31% didn’t realize the flexibility in how funds could be used; and 9% didn’t realize their need for funds until after the deadline. 38% also expressed concern that if they applied for the grant, they may take funds from members who might need them more.

Most previous Caregiver awards have been for a maximum of $500; 65% of respondents thought this was an appropriate amount, 23% thought it was too small, 1% thought it was too large, and 11% choose “other”, with most of these respondents expressing uncertainty in their comments. (12 survey respondents left this question blank, and are excluded here.)

One suggestion raised at the 2018 Business Meeting was to set aside some funds for a ‘second round’ of applications closer to the meeting date, for changes in caregiving situations that occur shortly before the meeting and are therefore harder for members to plan for (note the 9% above who didn’t know they needed help until after the deadline). 72% agreed; as for what percentage of funds should be reserved for closer to the conference date, responses were quite variable and ranged from 0-80%; the median = 40%. In comments, however, several folks also noted that having an earlier deadline (before the registration deadline) could also be helpful, as some members may base their decisions as to whether they can attend the meeting on whether they receive caregiving assistance.

44 respondents left comments at the end of the survey. The majority of these comments (68%) expressed enthusiasm for the program; only 1 respondent expressed concern as to whether the use of funds in this manner was appropriate. The question of on-site childcare was raised in 6 comments; this is an issue we will continue to explore for future meetings. The issue of support for dependents other than children was raised in 4 comments, highlighting the need for flexibility in caregiving support.


ABS Newsletter

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