“Extinction rates soar, and the texture of life changes.

Elizabeth Kolbert, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History

To a great extent humans dominate current ecological and evolutionary processes. As a consequence there is a growing slice of biodiversity that is forever lost to extinction. At the same time, another slice of biodiversity rides the wave of globalization expanding its presence and influence across the globe. These dual trends profoundly transform global biodiversity, producing ecological and evolutionary outcomes that are only just beginning to come into focus.

Our group documents and explores this transition in biodiversity using a variety of inter-disciplinary research techniques, seeking to apply our insights to the task of conserving and sustainably managing valuable ecosystems.

Our research in the News



Oliver Stringham’s dissertation research on why owners release their exotic pets has been the subject of several news articles, including these appearing in the Australian Broadcast Company News and Cosmos Magazine.

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As part of a group of ecologists and environmental economists, we produced an overview of how the trade in exotic pets can often lead to the establishment of invasive vertebrate animals within Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. The topic has made some press headlines in Mongabay.com, Popular Science, and our home-town newspaper. PC: Adam Toome

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Where will the brood parasitic pin-tailed whydah establish in North America?  Rob Crystal-Ornelas' dissertation research provides key insights into the answer as highlighted in Science and published in The Condor.  Rob's research has also made it to the New York Times!

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Mike Allen’s dissertation research explores the interaction between climate, agriculture, and biodiversity conservation. Tune in here for an overview of his work related to the USDA graduate student climate adaptation partnership (Photo:  Matthew Sileo).


Jeff Brown’s dissertation research on the role of urban protected forests in biodiversity conservation is making the news. Here he, and former lab members, show that decades after being set aside for conservation, a rare New Jersey old growth forest has experienced some massive changes in bird diversity.