I am a Wildlife Research Assistant at the University of Georgia working under Drs. Tracey Tuberville and Kurt Buhlmann of UGA's Savannah River Ecology Lab (SREL). I am also co-advised by Dr. Clinton Moore, from the Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit. My master's thesis will focus on improving existing methods for head-starting Mojave Desert Tortoise hatchlings (Gopherus agassizii), in the effort to bolster recruitment in this threatened species. My study site is the Mojave National Preserve, CA.
I first got involved with wildlife when I started volunteering at the Louisville Zoo at age 12. These early interactions with captive animals gave me a lasting passion for wildlife biology and conservation. I recently completed a B.S. in Biology with a concentration in ecology at the University of Louisville (May 2014). As an undergrad, I studied territorial behavior in fish, worked as a field technician on a large mammal ecology project, and performed wildlife hazard mitigation.
I am specifically interested in manipulative methods such as reintroduction, head-starting, and habitat restoration. I plan to develop holistic, ecology-based management strategies that use both ecosystem and single-species based approaches (i.e., ecosystem restoration followed by reintroductions). Although on the ground, active biodiversity management is my primary focus, I am also generally interested in quantitative ecology and in applying rigorous statistical evaluations to my experimental management treatments.