of white-tailed deer on patterns of biodiversity:
Growing deer populations
throughout eastern North America are having numerous social
and ecological impacts. I am broadly interested in understanding
the pathways and
mechanisms by which deer affect biodiversity, and have a long-term deer exclosure study
running at the Dairymenís Inc. property in northern Wisconsin.
I am also interested in approaches that successfully integrate ungulate and forest
management, and I coordinate the activities of international teams on this topic:
IUFRO Working Group on Silviculture and Ungulates
Forest Ungulate Research Network
Deer herbivory research projects I am interested in pursuing include:
- the role of herbivore compensatory responses in shifting the outcome of
- land use history, deer, and their
effects on plant species composition and
- trophic cascades following the reintroduction
of top predators
- trajectories of plant communities (and/or relaxation of chemical defense)
release from browsing pressure.
history, ecology, conservation, and management
of Midwestern biodiversity
There is still much to learn
about the ecology of species and habitats throughout the
Midwest. The success of conservation and restoration efforts ultimately
depends on the
extent to which we understand the natural community of which we
are a part. My research
is conducted in the southwestern Ohio region or at the Dairymen's Inc.
property in northern
A few of these research topics include:
- Assessing long-term changes in biodiversity
through resurvey work.
- The ecology, impacts and management of invasive
- Avian and floristic surveys of natural areas
- Design and deployment of biodiversity sensor networks
Interested in conducting ecological research in the tropics? Wright State has partnered
with Operation Wallacea, a network of European and North American academics that
conduct biodiversity and conservation biology research.
Operation Wallacea operates research centers in Indonesia, Madagascar, Honduras, Peru,
Mexico, and elsewhere. Research efforts are designed to produce data for a four-stage
conservation process, including assessing the biodiversity value of a site, monitoring
long-term changes in key taxa, assessing the socio-economic value of the protected areas,
and using data from the first three stages to establish evidence-based, "best practice"
conservation management projects.
My students "plug in" to existing research programs, and are co-advised by
Wallacea scientist. They still develop their own research questions and conduct independent
research, but with in-country logistic support and scientific expertise.