MS Winter 2017 (now Wildlife Biologist with Alaska Department of Fish and Game)
Over the past five years I have been involved in various wildlife projects throughout the Western United States. I began working with small mammals and pumas while pursuing my Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies at the University of California Santa Cruz. After completing my degree, I spent the next three years deploying GPS collars to track the survival, feeding behavior and reproductive success of pumas in central California. I have also worked with wolves, golden eagles, black swifts and other wildlife throughout Montana, Wyoming and Colorado. I am broadly interested in carnivore ecology, behavioral ecology and conservation efforts.
As a Masters student in the Levi lab, I will be investigating the ecological role of bears in the dispersal of a variety of fruiting plant species in Southeast Alaska. The tremendous amounts of fruit consumed by bears results in seed filled scats throughout the landscape, which may provide a feasible foraging resource for small mammals during times of food scarcity and an important form of seed dispersal. Understanding the interspecific interactions between bears and small mammals will aid in a better understanding of the potential cascading effects of bears on small mammal populations and how it may impact avian predators and mesopredators.