My research is focused on large-scale conservation planning in both an academic and an applied context. Working at a large scale allows me to integrate principles of reserve design into conservation including shape, size, and distribution of sites; all of which ensure that populations can persist and respond to future conditions. Also, because so much of conservation is about managing people as well as animals, I involve stakeholders and experts in my work.
Currently I’m working as a post-doc with Peter McIntyre at UW-Madison, studying connectivity optimization for Great Lakes migratory fish (aka barrier removal) . I helped put together an online decision support tool called Fishworks that lets you run an optimization on whatever set of barriers you like (Moody et al. 2017). I’m working on two other papers that use the results of the optimizations. The first is distilling the optimization process down into a series of rules of thumb that would allow application outside the Great Lakes context. Also, I’m working with several local groups to figure out how detailed barrier data affects the results of the optimization.
I’ve also worked on several other decision support tools for conservation planning including on distribution models for amphibians and reptiles to inform important herp areas, and on birds doing multi-state/multi-habitat prioritization for conservation actions.
I still have a huge fondness for my MSc and BSc study species (seabirds) and stable isotope analysis. Now I just have to figure out how to integrate SIA and large-scale conservation. And get back out to a seabird island.