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Graduate and Undergraduate Mentors In Conservation

Looking for advisers, academic programs, research assistantships, internships, or summer programs in conservation behavior?

Here is a list of scientists affiliated with academic institutions who conduct research in animal behavior and conservation. If you would like to be included in this list, please fill out this form.


Dr. Lisa Angeloni
lisa.angeloni@colostate.edu
Colorado State University
Professor
1878 Campus Delivery
Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
+1 (970) 491-0562
https://sites.biology.colostate.edu/angelonilab/Site/Home.html

My research is broadly focused on the evolution and plasticity of behavior, the effects of human disturbance on wildlife behavior, and the behavior of species of conservation concern. For example, we have studied: 1) the effects of the rearing environment on the behavior of animals in conservation breeding programs, including Arkansas darters and black footed ferrets; 2) the effects of changing environments and assisted migration on the behavior of Trinidadian guppies; and 3) the effects of human recreation, anthropogenic noise, and light pollution on the behavior of ungulates, prairie dogs, and other wildlife taxa.

Prof. Raphaël Arlettaz
raphael.arlettaz@iee.unibe.ch
University of Bern, Division of Conservation Biology, Institute of Ecology and Evolution
Professor of Conservation Biology
3012, Bern, Switzerland
(+41) 0 31 631 3161

I work primarily on societally-relevant biodiversity conservation and restoration issues, systematically applying a problem-solving approach. My current main research focus is on population biology of rare and endangered animal species (insects and vertebrates, especially birds and bats) of temperate, Mediterranean and Alpine biomes, and on community ecology (plants, invertebrates, vertebrates) of agro-ecosystems and Alpine ecosystems (grasslands, vineyards, fruit tree plantations, forests, treeline habitats and floodplain rivers).


Peter Bednekoff
pbednekof@emich.edu
Eastern Michigan University     
Professor         
401-G Mark Jefferson Science Complex 
Ypsilanti, Michigan, USA                             

My research interests center on how risk of predation shapes foraging behavior. My thinking was heavily shaped by opportunities to work in Botswana and the Galapagos Islands. In Botswana, I avoided potential predators, and in the Galapagos, lots did not avoid me. These experiences taught me that much of what we regard as normal behavior is influenced by the risk of predation. My experiences working in different countries have also fueled my interest in conservation. I am working on a book that emphasizes the conservation relevance of behavioral ecology and working with students to address how local species deal with environmental change. In my teaching, I also seek to connect the global with the local and theory with practice. I enjoy mentoring wherever my expertise can help advance science and conservation.


Dr. Jeffrey M. Black
Jeff.Black@humboldt.edu
Humboldt State University, Department of Wildlife
Professor
Wildlife Building #160 & #248
Arcata, California, USA
+1 (707) 826-3439
http://www.humboldt.edu/wildlife/faculty/black/research.html

My research approach combines theory, experimentation, and long-term field studies. I strive to convey the realization that evolutionary processes acting on individuals drive the distribution and size of wildlife populations. I am interested in describing how animals are distributed in space and time, whether through the need of acquiring resources or to avoid predators, humans and competitors, and why some individuals are faithful to mates and territories while others readily take advantage of alternative options. This pursuit includes assessment of the evolution and maintenance of individual attributes like health, stature, experience, personality traits, and secondary sexual characteristics (crests, color patches).

Dr. Daniel Blumstein
marmots@ucla.edu
University of California Los Angeles
The Institute of the Environment and Sustainability
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Professor
621 Charles E. Young, Drive South
Los Angeles, California USA
+1 (310) 267-4746
http://www.eeb.ucla.edu/Faculty/Blumstein

Broadly, I am interested in the evolution of social and antipredator behavior and the ramifications mechanisms of behavior have for higher-level ecological processes and for wildlife conservation. I have spent over a decade studying the evolution of complex communication and sociality and used the 14 species of marmots (Marmota-cat-sized sciurid rodents found throughout the northern hemisphere) as a model system. Much of my marmot work now focuses on the yellow-bellied marmots of the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory (www.rmbl.org) which have been studied continuously since 1962. A main theme in my research is integrating knowledge of animal behavior into conservation biology. Ultimately, I aim to illustrate, through examples, how knowledge of behavior should influence policy. In addition to my more theoretical work, I have been actively engaged in using ecotourism as a form of community development and as a way to conserve natural resources and I’m very interested in urban ecology and human-wildlife conflict/coexistence more broadly. My theoretical research interests are particularly relevant to the applied work because ecotourism can adversely affect wildlife. Ultimately, it is the wildlife's perception of human impacts that matters.


Dr. Debbie Boege-Tobin
ddtobin@alaska.edu
University of Alaska Anchorage, Department of Biology
Associate Professor of Biological Sciences
Kachemake Bay Campus, 3101 Science Circle, CPISB 101 (Biology)
Anchorage, Alaska, USA
+1 (907) 235-1607
http://www.uaa.alaska.edu/biology/facultyandstaff/boege-tobin.cfm

I have worked in Conservation Behavior for over 15 years, including undergraduates in studies with community partners as often as possible. A few examples of projects in which I have been involved include: Behavioral ecology of reintroduced populations of North American river otters (Lontra canadensis) in Missouri; Play, olfactory response, and foraging ecology of coastal river otters, particularly in effort to deter their use of local docks, boats and cabins in Kachemak Bay, AK; CoastWalk beach clean-up and assessment of area use by coastal invertebrates and vertebrates in Kachemak Bay, including biannual catalog of intertidal zone epi-macrofauna and algae; Identification of killer whales (Orcinus orca) and humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) in Prince William Sound and Kenai Fjords, AK; Foraging ecology and tagging unit for unusual mortality event of sea otters (Enhydra lutris) in Kachemak Bay; Rescue, and when deceased, necropsies and some articulations, of several cetacean and pinniped specimens, including threatened and endangered species (e.g., gray, minke, humpback & Stejneger’s beaked whales, sperm whale calf, Steller sea lion, harbor seals, elephant seals), and many sea otters; most events included undergraduate participation ; and, Preliminary behavioral and population assessment of a population of giant otters (Pteronura brasiliensis) in Guyana.


Dr. Richard Buchholz
byrb@olemiss.edu
University of Mississippi
Professor
Department of Biology, 219 Shoemaker Hall
Oxford, Mississippi, USA
+1 (662) 915-5012
Associate Professor, Department of Biology, University of Mississippi, University, MS 38677, USA, (662) 915-5012 
https://biology.olemiss.edu/people/faculty/richard-buchholz/

I am interested in mentoring students who wish to apply a behavioral approach to identifying, elucidating and/or managing animal conservation problems. In the context of conservation behavior, recent topics my students and I have researched include the effects of water conditions on oviposition site selection by tree frogs, human recreation and disturbance of basking in an endangered freshwater turtle, roost site associations in big-eared bats, and parasitism and home range movements of the Neotropical ocellated turkey. Although my individual research focus has been on sexual selection in birds, prospective students are welcome to have a different focus in taxon or study topic as long as the proposed work is fundamentally behavioral. Indeed my newest project, as Associate Director of the Center for Biodiversity & Conservation Research is to develop a citizen science initiative for documenting coastal resources in the northern Gulf of Mexico. I helped start the ABS Conservation Committee, served as committee chair, co-edited the first text on conservation behavior (Clemmons & Buchholz 1997 Behavioral Approaches to Conservation in the Wild, Cambridge Univ. Press), and continue to encourage animal behaviorists to apply their skills to the conservation of biodiversity (Buchholz 2007, Buchholz & Hanlon 2013, Cooke et al. 2014).

Prof. Tim Caro
tmcaro@ucdavis.edu     
University of California Davis / University of Bristol
Professor
USA/UK
http://wfcb.ucdavis.edu/people/emeriti/caro-tim/caro-lab

I am interested in exploring new connections between emerging subfields in behavioral ecology and conservation science. Historically I tried to relate aspects of behavioral ecology to conservation biology, but then became disillusioned with behavioral ecology playing a meaningful role in regards to in situ conservation, although there are some exceptions. Currently, I like to draw together disparate information from the natural and social sciences to craft conservation policy initiatives, and separately to study the ecological and evolutionary of significance of animal coloration. My current field research involves conservation of coconut crabs in Tanzania and studying zebra stripes in Bristol and Africa.


Dr. Barbara Clucas
barbara.clucas@humboldt.edu 
Humboldt State University
Department of Wildlife
Assistant Professor
1 Harpst Street 
Arcata, California, USA
+1 (707) 826-5651
https://wildlife.humboldt.edu/people/barbara-clucas 

I am interested in interspecific interactions and how they affect species survival, behavior and the conservation of biodiversity. My work uses field, experimental and comparative approaches and lies at the interface of conservation, animal behavior, and urban ecology. I collaborate with state and national wildlife/land agencies to conduct research and find conservation solutions on topics including threatened and endangered species, using novel technologies for biological surveys, and human dimensions of conservation.

Dr. Kevin Crooks
kevin.crooks@colostate.edu
Colorado State University, Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology
115 Wagar
Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
+1 (970) 491-7936
http://kcrooks.colostate.edu/


In my lab, we strive to apply theoretical principles of ecology, animal behavior, and conservation science to natural systems. My research has emphasized the conservation of mammals, often focusing on carnivores due to their sensitivities to environmental disturbances. I do not feel limited, however, to the study of any specific taxon. Rather, we strive to ask and answer interesting scientific questions that help promote the conservation of earth’s biological diversity. Because of my commitment to, and passion for, conservation, much of my research, and that of my lab, examines the impacts of anthropogenic disturbances on the natural world.

Dr. Colleen Cassady St. Clair
cstclair@ualberta.ca
Professor Behavioural Ecology, Department of Biological Sciences University of Alberta
Edmonton, T6G 2E9, Canada
(780) 492-9685
http://www.biology.ualberta.ca/faculty/colleen_cassady_stclair/


Several graduate students and I have studied how animals move through and select habitat in landscapes that have been altered by humans with a particular focus barriers and corridors.  These studies have addressed birds (Belisle, Gillies, Tremblay), small mammals (McDonald and Porter), wolves (Whittinton) and elk (myself).  We have studied barriers in the form of roads (Whittington, McDonald, Belisle, myself), forestry (Porter), and agriculture (Darlow, Gillies, Hinam, Poulin, Knopff).  We have also studied road effects on bird health (Byers, Dube, Longmore) and communication (Proppe).  A second theme of my research program is to understand and mitigate sources of human-wildlife conflict.  These studies have used deterrence and aversive conditioning to alter the movement behavior and habitat use of birds (Ronconi), elk (Kloppers, Spaedtke) and bears (Homstol, Warrington).  We have also explored the role of habitat selection in perceptions of and potential for conflict between humans and cougars (Knopff) and coyotes (Cembrowski, Hutt, Murray).  More generally, I am interested in the interface between Behavioral Ecology and Conservation Biology. I especially enjoy exploring novel ways of advancing conservation practice with empirical methods and theory from behavior.  My past work focused on behavioral ecology in seabirds, primarily brood reduction in crested penguins. 


Dr. Stephen B. Hager
SteveHager@augustana.edu
Augustana College Professor of Biology
Rock Island, Illinois, USA
+1 (309) 794-3439
https://www.augustana.edu/academics/faculty-directory/stephen-b-hager


Students in my courses are challenged to learn content and conceptual material, and to apply this information to solve problems. Students who do well in my classes display high-level critical thinking skills, successfully analyze complex situations, and effectively communicate their work in both verbal and written contexts. My research program seeks to understand the magnitude of and factors influencing bird mortality resulting from window collisions, which is one of many threats to birds in urban landscapes. This is important because urbanization is accelerating faster than human population growth, and knowledge of how the urban environment affects bird survival is urgently needed for appropriate conservation and management strategies. Visit my webpage for more information: https://sites.google.com/augustana.edu/sbh-naturestudies/home


Dr. Andrew Edelman
aedelman@westga.edu
University of Georgia, Department of Biology Associate Professor
30118, Carrollton, Georgia, USA
+1 (678) 839-4042
https://sites.google.com/site/andrewjedelman/

My research focuses on the intersection between animal ecology, behavior, and conservation. We use a variety of quantitative techniques (social networks, occupancy modeling, remote cameras, etc.) to understand how management of landscapes shapes animal communities and behavior. Currently, my research examines the response of the mammalian community (small mammals, bats, and mesocarnivores) to fire-based restoration of montane longleaf pine. My lab group consists of both undergraduate and master’s level student collaborators.


Prof. Esteban Fernandez-Juricic
efernan@purdue.edu
Purdue University Professor
915 W. State St - Department of Biological Sciences
West Lafayette, Indiana, USA
+1 (765) 494-6044
http://estebanfj.bio.purdue.edu/
Twitter: @EstebanFerJur

In my lab, we are interested in three main topics. First, understanding the physiological and ecological factors accounting for the inter-specific variability in detection windows (areas surrounding an individual where the probabilities of detecting tourists increase) to better estimate buffer areas to protect wildlife. Second, establishing the role of habituation and sensitization in the responses of wildlife to different types of human activities. Third, determining suitable management strategies that promote co-existence between wildlife and humans in protected areas and airports, particularly taking into consideration endangered and threatened species. We also are interested in understanding the mechanisms birds use to gather information that is relevant for fitness (anti-predator scanning, foraging, and mate choice) from both physiological and behavioral perspectives. To that end, we study how some visual properties (visual field configuration, visual acuity, variations in the density of photoreceptors and ganglion cells across the retina, sensitivity of visual pigments) influence scanning behavior in different ecological contexts. We assess these visual-behavior relationships in a wide variety of bird species because ultimately we seek to understand the evolution of mechanisms of visual information use in species with different life histories (e.g., solitary vs. social species, species that live in open vs. closed habitats, etc.).


Dr. Preston Foerder
Preston-Foerder@utc.edu
University of Tennessee-Chattanooga
Assistant Professor
350-C Holt H, Psychology Dept. 2803
615 McCallie Ave. Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA
+1 (423) 425-2320
http://www.utc.edu/psychology/profiles/faculty/foerder.php


As a comparative psychologist, I strive to find possibilities for my research to aid in conservation. My recent experience on the organizing committee for the Conservation Workshop at the last Animal Behavior Society Conference impressed upon me the possibilities for a behavioral/cognitive perspective. The solutions that our group devised to combat human-coyote conflict leaned primarily on habituation and operant conditioning processes. Locally, the Chattanooga Nature Center houses red wolves in collaboration with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. I am currently working with Nature Center, providing students for observations of their red wolves. We will examine their general behavior in captivity, as well as breeding behaviors that may eventually lead to an increase in the genetic diversity of the wild population in North Carolina through pup fostering. At the Tennessee Aquarium, I am currently engaged in research on sensory discrimination in giant Pacific octopuses, and I have been in talks with their Conservation Institute about a behavioral perspective on their work. My ongoing research on elephant cognition will help with mitigating human-animal conflict by expanding our knowledge of problem solving abilities in that species.


Prof. Caitlin R. Gabor
gabor@txstate.edu
Texas State University
Professor
601 University Dr
San Marcos, Texas, USA
+1 (512) 245-3387
https://gabor.wp.txstate.edu/

The work in my lab spans conservation physiology to behavioral ecology. We focus on the consequences of anthropogenic stressors on live-bearing fish and amphibian declines using a holistic framework that evaluates mechanisms (e.g., genetic and physiology) through function (e.g., evolutionary and conservation implications). We have also studied the historical forces of natural and sexual selection on speciation in a unisexual-bisexual species complex of live bearing fish from a behavioral and physiological standpoint.




Dr. Tom A. Langen
tlangen@clarkson.edu
Clarkson University Departments of Biology & Psychology
Dean of Arts & Sciences, Professor
Potsdam, New York, USA
+1 (315) 268-7933
https://www.clarkson.edu/people/tom-langen

My conservation-related research and teaching focuses on three areas: (1) Road ecology. I conduct research on how to identify and mitigate environmental problems associated with roads and road traffic in North America and in Latin America. (2) Wetland restoration. I evaluate the success of wetland restoration programs done at maintaining wetland associated biodiversity and ecosystem services in human-dominated landscapes. (3) Management for Species of Greatest Conservation Need. I investigate how habitat management can be used to maintain or recover populations of declining species such as golden-winged warbler, spruce grouse, or Blanding’s turtle. I welcome applications for graduate work – I supervise graduate students in Clarkson University’s interdisciplinary Environmental Science & Engineering and Bioscience & Biotechnology programs.


Dr. Sue Margulis
margulis@canisius.edu
Canisius College Professor of Animal Behavior, Ecology and Conservation, and Biology
2001 Main Street Buffalo, New York, USA
+1 (716) 888-2773
http://www3.canisius.edu/~margulis/


As a faculty member in the department of animal behavior, ecology, and conservation, I teach several courses on zoo biology, as well as the department's conservation biology course, and a field course in South Africa (wildlife ecology and conservation). My research has primarily been zoo-based. I am often working with endangered species, thus there is great interest in enhancing captive breeding and better understanding the specific environmental requirements of different species. Consequently, my research has largely focused on the effects of environment on behavior. This includes both the physical environment and the social environment, both of which may have far-reaching effects on behavior, reproduction, and overall well-being. I am particularly interested in patterns of reproductive and parental behavior in captive animals, and in quantifying the effects of environmental change on behavior.


Dr. M. Elsbeth (Misty) McPhee
mcpheem@uwosh.edu
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Associate Professor
Interdisciplinary Studies
800 Algoma Blvd
Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA
+1 (920) 424-0644
https://www.uwosh.edu/facstaff/mcpheem


Long-term maintenance of captive populations, and release of captive animals into the wild, is one of many approaches to endangered species conservation. For conservation biologists working with captive populations, however, a fundamental question is the following: How has captivity altered the behavior, morphology, and physiology of captive-bred animals? Broadly, I am interested in how populations respond to rapid changes in their environment. Specifically, I have focused on this question in the context of reintroduction programs. Currently, I am working with the reintroduction of whooping cranes into central Wisconsin to establish an Eastern Migratory Population of these endangered birds. Prior to working with cranes, I used meadow voles as a model system to measure how captivity altered behavior in captive animals. For a short video on this work, go to http://youtu.be/ijT0Y4zUtd0.


Sarah L. Mesnick
Sarah.Mesnick@noaa.gov
Southwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA
8901 La Jolla Shores Drive
La Jolla, California, USA, 92037-1508
+1 (858) 546-7148

I am an ecologist in the Marine Mammal and Turtle Division of the Southwest Fisheries Science Center, NOAA Fisheries, and adjunct professor and founding member of the Center for Marine Biodiversity and Conservation at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego. My research focuses on conservation behavior in oceanic dolphins and whales. I study patterns of sociality and the impacts of anthropogenic activities on social structure and population dynamics. My work integrates information derived from genetic, acoustic, observational, and phylogenetic sources. Examples of projects conducted in partnership with collaborators and students include: social organization and population structure of sperm whales, acoustic biogeography of blue whales, vessel response behavior and social disruption in eastern tropical Pacific dolphins involved in the purse-seine fishery for tuna, sexual ecology and the evolution of cetacean mating systems, human-animal conflict, depredation, and social leaning in sperm whales. Most recently, my work has focused on saving the vaquita, a critically endangered porpoise in the Gulf of California, Mexico, and socio-economic approaches to conservation.


Dr. Mike Mooring
mmooring@pointloma.edu
Point Loma Nazarene University
Professor
3900 Lomaland Drive
San Diego, California, USA
+1 (619) 849-2719
https://mike-mooring.squarespace.com/home

I did my Ph.D. dissertation research in southern Africa in Zimbabwe, studying parasite-defense grooming in impala and testing the 'programmed grooming model', followed by post-docs on the same topic in different species in South Africa, Namibia, Canada, and California. Over the past two decades I have done all my research in the summer months with teams of advanced undergraduates and the occasional graduate student from another university. We have studied desert bighorn sheep (New Mexico), plains bison (Nebraska), and >50 species of ungulates at the San Diego Zoo. Our 12-year study of bison was supported by the National Science Foundation, and we have now completed 11 years of field research in Costa Rica supported by San Diego Zoo Global and PLNU. In Costa Rica, we study large, elusive mammals with camera trap surveys and scent detection dogs, with a special interest in predators and their prey in the cloud forests of the Talamanca Cordillera. My team and I have published on a variety of topics relevant to animal behavior and conservation, includingparasite defense, sexual segregation, behavioral endocrinology, sexual selection, acoustical communication, predator-prey interactions, and most recently, circadian and lunar activity patterns.

http://www.pointloma.edu/experience/academics/schools-departments/department-biology/faculty-staff/mike-mooring-phd



Prof. Stephen J. Mullin
smullin@astate.edu
Arkansas State University
Professor & Dept. Chair Dept. of Biological Sciences
Jonesboro, Arkansas, USA
+1 (870) 972-3082
https://mullinlab.weebly.com/

Research conducted by members of my lab group typically concerns behavioral and community ecology, with many projects focusing on predator-prey relationships that involve at least one species of reptile or amphibian. Changes in a microhabitat might influence not only the expression of animal behavior, but also patterns of habitat selection and the frequency of organismal interactions. Studies of this type can elucidate the factors regulating the dynamics of species within particular habitat types and, have implications in conservation biology where the choice of sites appropriate for preservation is often debated. I welcome inquiries from prospective students for either the MS-biology (thesis option) or the Ph.D.-Environmental Sciences programs.


Dr. Guillermo Paz-y-Mino-C
directornesp@rwu.edu or guillermo.pazyminoc@gmail.com
Roger Williams University Co-Director New England Science Public
One Old Ferry Road
Bristol, Rhode Island, USA
+1 (401) 254-3137
https://evolutionliteracy.com/guillermo-paz-y-mino-c-publications/
 
I have broad interests in behavioral ecology and evolutionary biology. My research focuses in three main areas: the link between different levels of social organization and the cognitive abilities of animals, the association between socio-sexual behaviors and the communication of signals for the recognition of kin (particularly the role of memory in kin recognition), and the application of behavioral paradigms in conservation biology. I am intrigued by the relevance of cognitive repertoires, cognitive legacies and collecting reasoning in conservation behavior efforts. I work (or have worked) with different biological systems including mammals, birds, and nematodes. More recently, I have switched my research program toward taxa, clone and kin discrimination in protists and other microbes: genetics, evolution, behavior and health.


Prof. Noa Pinter-Wollman
nmpinter@ucla.edu
University of California Los Angeles
Associate Professor
621 Charles E. Young Drive South
Los Angeles, California, USA
https://pinterwollmanlab.eeb.ucla.edu/

Many biological systems are complex aggregates of multiple agents working together towards collective, higher-order goals, and evolution acts on variation in these emergent collective properties. There is no central control dictating the activities of members in the assembly. Instead, agents use local signals that determine their behavior and are received through an intricate interaction network resulting in collective phenotypes. Thus, the composition of a group and the way its members interact affects the success of the group as a whole, just as the composition of any sports team dictates its success in the league. The Pinter-Wollman lab examines the emergence of collective outcomes from group composition by combining field and lab studies with computer simulations, theoretical work, image analysis, and social network analysis. We are further interested in the interplay between conservation biology and animal behavior. Examining the behavior of animals can provide important assessment tools for conservation actions and insights on preserving biodiversity. At the same time, wildlife management actions can provide unique opportunities for studying interesting questions in animal behavior.

Bruce A. Schulte, PhD
bruce.schulte@wku.edu
Western Kentucky University
Associate Vice-President for Strategy, Performance and Accountability Executive Director WKU Research Foundation University Distinguished Professor
1906 College Heights Blvd.
Bowling Green, Kentucky, USA, 11080
+1 (270) 745-4856
https://www.wku.edu/biology/staff/index.php?memberid=755


Our research group examines the development of social and reproductive behaviors in keystone mammals such as elephants as well as the mechanisms, especially chemical that mediate these interactions. In recent years, we have taken more of a conservation behavior approach, as we work to reduce human-wildlife conflict by studying the behavioral ecology of these species, specifically their modes of communication, reproductive patterns, and social systems. We work in Africa on elephants and other mammals. We also have conducted research with beavers, manatees, horses, and cetaceans. Citizen scientist have become important contributors to our research on human-elephant interactions in Kenya. Applications of our research strive to use an understanding of behavior to facilitate positive human-animal interactions.


Dr. Debra Shier
dmshier@g.ucla.edu or DShier@sandiegozoo.org
Brown Endowed Associate Director of Recovery Ecology
Beckman Center for Conservation Research, San Diego Zoo Global
15600 San Pasqual Valley Road
Escondido, CA 92027-7000 USA
760-796-5692

Assistant Adjunct Professor Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
University of California Los Angeles
621 Charles E. Young Dr.
South Los Angeles, CA 90095

https://institute.sandiegozoo.org/debra-shier-phd
https://www.eeb.ucla.edu/indivfaculty.php?FacultyKey=10812

For the past 15 years, I have been studying the ways in which an understanding of animal behavior and behavioral ecology can be applied to conservation strategies such as reintroductions and translocations. In general, my research has focused on using basic theory to create effective and efficient relocation methods by encouraging settlement, dampening stress, and increasing post-release survival and reproductive success. My research addresses 1) the kinds of learning experiences that are required for the development of effective anti-predator behavior after release into the wild, 2) how social relationships among founders may affect their survival following translocation 3) the effects of scent communication in the translocation process, 4) whether natal habitat preferences can be exploited to enhance release site settlement and 5) the effects of behavioral consistency (temperament) on post-release survival. My current research examines these questions in two endangered Heteromyids, the Pacific pocket mouse and Stephens’ kangaroo rat.


Dr. John P. Swaddle
jpswad@wm.edu
William & Mary, Institute for Integrative Conservation
Professor and Faculty Director
23187-8795 Williamsburg, Virginia, USA
http://jpswad.people.wm.edu/
http://www.wm.edu/conservation


I co-direct the Institute for Integrative Conservation (IIC) at William & Mary, which is a multidisciplinary unit that integrates across the sciences, social sciences, humanities, business, education, and law to design and implement solutions to pressing conservation challenges. Almost all of the work of the IIC is performed in collaboration with conservation partners, such as large and small NGOs, government agencies, private corporations, and other universities. We have active conservation programs around the world. For my own research, I focus on the role of behavior in human-wildlife conflict and help to design technology and policy solutions that lessen the pressure on wildlife while allowing for economic development for local people. Our work straddles basic science to applied solutions. We have a very active lab of undergraduates, graduate students, and postdocs, and are always looking for new collaborators and colleagues to join our program at the interface of behavioral ecology and applied conservation.


Dr. Ronald R. Swaisgood
rswaisgood@sandiegozoo.org
Brown Endowed Director of Recovery Ecology
San Diego Zoo Global
15600 San Pasqual Valley Road, Escondido, CA, 92027-7000
General Scientific Director, Cocha Cashu Biological Station, Peru:

http://cochacashu.sandiegozooglobal.org/
http://institute.sandiegozoo.org/recovery-ecology
https://institute.sandiegozoo.org/ronald-swaisgood-phd

Ron Swaisgood serves San Diego Zoo Global as the Brown Endowed Director of Recovery Ecology and is the General Scientific Director of Cocha Cashu Biological Station in Manu National Park in the Peruvian Amazon. Swaisgood earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Ph.D. in Animal Behavior from the University of California at Davis. He supervises several conservation science programs, primarily in California, Mexico, China, South Africa and Peru. These include (1) ecological and behavioral research programs for several bear and other mammalian species (2) population monitoring and adaptive management programs for several local bird, reptile and amphibian species; and (3) translocation/reintroduction programs for several species such as kangaroo rats, owls, rhinoceros, condors, tortoises, and frogs. Most of Swaisgood’s research experience focuses on using ecological and behavioral theory to address critical conservation problems, using science as a tool for improved conservation management. His research program has addressed questions relating to mating systems, communication, denning ecology, spatial ecology, habitat selection, foraging ecology, and reintroduction biology.


Prof. Robin Tinghitella
robin.tinghitella@du.edu
University of Denver
Associate Professor
Denver, Colorado, USA
http://tinghitellalab.weebly.com/
 
Work in the lab focuses on evolutionary and behavioral ecology, most often concentrating on social interactions between the sexes. Within that broad area, we ask questions like: What is the role of behavior in rapid evolutionary change? How do opposing selection pressures and non-adaptive processes shape animal communication systems? How does environmental change alter sexual selection? Can parental effects facilitate rapid responses to changing mating environments? And, how do sexual selection and changing ecology work together to influence reproductive isolation? Our work in the area of conservation behavior focuses on noise pollution and singing insects.


Dr. Mark Wildhaber
mwildhaber@usgs.gov
U.S. Geological Survey, Columbia Environmental Science Center
Research Ecologist
4200 New Haven Road
Columbia, Missouri, USA
+1 (573) 876-1847
https://www.usgs.gov/staff-profiles/mark-wildhaber


My research includes studies of the habitat selection, identification of and behavioral response to olfactory stimuli, reproductive behavior and physiology, and abiotic and biotic requirements for reproductive success of freshwater and marine fishes and crayfish that are considered at-risk, federally listed as threatened or endangered, or invasive. One of my ultimate goals is to use this information, along with information on fish behavior to develop spatial and temporal hierarchical fish population models using spatially-explicit and/or individual-based models that incorporate thermoregulation, bioenergetics, foraging theory, and/or other models of habitat choice under varying environmental conditions and/or contaminants in the context of global climate.




Dr. Marian Wong
marianw@uow.edu.au
University of Wollongong, School of Biological Sciences
Lecturer Marine Biology
Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia
+61 7 4221 3574
http://smah.uow.edu.au/biol/contacts/UOW135217.html

I am a behavioral ecologist interested in understanding how abiotic stressors influence the social and reproductive behaviors of group-living fishes. I currently work on a range of species, including coral reef and African cichlid fishes.