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Ecology Research

Dahlonega Campus

Main Research Goals

  • Wildlife ecology and management
  • Ecology and evolution of parasitoid wasps and their looper hosts (in collaboration with Dr. Margaret Smith)
  • Assessing the impact of study abroad programs

Potential Roles for Students

Students will help with the following:

  • Conduct hormone and metabolite assays
  • Behavioral assays
  • Habitat assessments

Students will gain hands-on experience with the following:

  • Data collection and analysis
  • Sample collection
  • Various laboratory techniques such as ELISAs and colorimetric assays

Main Research Goals

Ecotoxicology - impact of pollution on fish at the biochemical and behavioral levels.

Potential Roles for Students

  • Fish swimming and feeding studies
  • PCR 
  • Western blot for liver enzymes that detoxify pollutants

Main Research Goals

To better understand the behavioral ecology of chimpanzees living in a natural park with increasing anthropogenic pressures, and to better understand how we can mitigate these threats to their conservation.

Potential Roles for Students

  • Long-term chimpanzee conservation database management
  • Individual project development

Relevant Publications

Main Research Goals

Research in my lab focuses on the behavioral and physiological responses of animals (specifically box turtles) to environmental stressors and what effects these responses have on growth, reproduction and survival.

Potential Roles for Students

Students will help with the following:

  • Conduct hormone and metabolite assays
  • Behavioral assays
  • Habitat assessments

Students will gain hands-on experience with the following:

  • Data collection and analysis
  • Sample collection
  • Various laboratory techniques such as ELISAs and colorimetric assays

Main Research Goals

Ecology and conservation of local wildlife populations.

Potential Roles for Students

We do a lot of field work primarily focusing on wildlife collection/trapping techniques.

In the lab we produce ArcGIS maps, analyze data, and create figures.

Aside from the research aspect, a lot of time is spent trying to improve students' resumes, apply to graduate programs and internships, and prepare them for their next step after UNG.

Relevant Publications

Gainesville Campus

Main Research Goals

Wildlife ecology research primarily focused on resource use (such as habitat, spatial parameters, and thermal conditions), physiology, behavior, and disease of amphibians and reptiles (herpetology).

Potential Roles for Students

  • Field research
  • Animal handling
  • Data collection
  • Data entry
  • Data analysis
  • Presentations at conferences (local, regional, and national)

Main Research Goals

My research focuses on using molecular techniques to understand the relationships between organisms and their environment. I study both native organisms and invasive species.

Potential Roles for Students

  • Sample organisms in the field (plankton netting, fishing, trapping, plant sampling)
  • Use standard molecular techniques in the lab (DNA extraction, PCR, sequencing)

Main Research Goals

Entomology.

Potential Roles for Students

  • Collecting, rearing and identifying insects and plants
  • Cultivating microorganisms
  • Extracting metabolites and nucleic acids from insects, plants and microorganisms, and using analytical techniques to measures these compounds
  • Data entry and analysis
  • Constructing and presenting posters and talks to present at conferences
  • Preparing manuscripts for publication

Main Research Goals

My current collaboration with Dr. Hyslop includes ecology research focused on resource use (such as habitat, spatial parameters, and thermal conditions), physiology, behavior, and disease of amphibians and reptiles, especially with turtles. I have interests in examining fecal bacteria presence as well. I also have students that work on skeletal reconstruction from mammalian road kill remains.

Potential Roles for Students

  • Field research
  • Animal handling and sample collection
  • Data collection
  • Data entry
  • Data analysis
  • Presentations at conferences (local, regional, and national)

Relevant Publications

Somers A, Matthews C, LaVere A. The Box Turtle Connection: Building a Legacy.

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