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Erin B

- Research Program Mentor

PhD candidate at Texas A&M University

Expertise

Conservation, ecology, wildlife ecology, human-wildlife conflict, zoology, climate change impacts on wildlife/vegetation, animal movement modeling

Bio

I am a research ecologist, and I'm broadly interested in the impacts that disturbance (be it wildfire, invasive species, or human development) have on the landscape and the wildlife that inhabit it. I currently work on quantitative ecology research in the western United States, but have a strong background in international conservation work, including previous work on herbivore grazing patterns in Kenya and research on elephant movement and human-elephant interactions in northern Botswana. I work primarily with ecological models using R programming, across topics of landscape/spatial ecology, animal movement modeling, and spatiotemporal patterns of environmental change. When I'm not making cool maps on my computer, I like to read sci-fi books, try new recipes, and go hiking. I really enjoy the mentoring process and helping students work through the progression of a research project. As a scientist, it is important to start learning the skills and processes that frame how scientific knowledge is built, as well as understanding the many challenges that we face along the way!

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

Where the wild things go

How do certain environmental and/or anthropogenic factors influence animal movement patterns? This project would include developing ecological models based on publicly available movement data for one or more species of interest. Skills gained would be in R programming, GIS, and animal movement ecology.

Friend or foe? Local human-wildlife interactions

As human populations grow and increasingly overlap with wildlife, there are many potential interactions. This project could investigate the social and/or environmental aspects of human-wildlife interactions based on the student's local neighborhood, town, region, or country.

Coding skills

R

Teaching experience

I enjoy mentoring and teaching! I have mentored science and engineering undergraduates at Texas A&M through independent research projects and professional development. I also taught undergraduate freshmen-level laboratory classes in Natural History and Zoology. I love to help students work their way through a research project, from refining a research question, to finding appropriate methods for analysis, to culmination in a paper or presentation (or other medium) for sharing the results.

Credentials

Work experience

Colorado State University (2020 - Current)
Research Affiliate
US Geological Survey (2020 - Current)
Research ecologist

Education

Princeton University
BA Bachelor of Arts (2011)
Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Texas A&M University
PhD Doctor of Philosophy candidate
Ecology & Evolutionary Biology; Applied Biodiversity Science

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