2016 Annual Meeting
Asheville, NC | April 3-7, 2016
2016 Annual Meeting
Asheville, NC | April 3-7, 2016
The Opening Plenary will be on the topic of “Corridors and Connectivity,” and will be equally divided into two presentations, one describing the benefits and one describing the disadvantages.
Daniel Simberloff is a biologist and ecologist, Nancy Gore Hunger Professor of Environmental Studies at the University of Tennessee, and Editor-in-Chief of the journal Biological Invasions. Simberloff studied under scientist and author E.O. Wilson, with whom he collaborated on experimental studies to assess the theory of island biogeography, and coauthored the papers that earned them the Ecological Society of America’s George Mercer Award in 1971. Though the island biogeography theory led to the idea of constructing wildlife corridors to increase species movement and conservation, Simberloff has criticized the notion and called for conservation strategies to be based on relative costs and benefits. Simberloff is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences has served on the Board of Governors of The Nature Conservancy, the federal Invasive Species Advisory Committee, and the editorial boards of Biodiversity and Conservation, Oecologia, Biological Invasions, BioScience and Ecology. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1969.
Nick Haddad is a research scientist and the William Neal Reynolds Distinguished Professor within the Department of Biology at North Carolina State University. For 22 years, he has studied how plants and animals use corridors. Much of his research has focused on large, controlled experiments that have enabled him to determine how corridors work to increase plant and animal dispersal and maintain populations and biodiversity. Increasingly, his research has turned to natural corridors within landscapes in need of conservation, and he has focused on the consequences of corridors for conservation of rare and endangered species across large landscapes. Haddad serves as a site moderator of Conservation Corridor, which provides tools, resources, and digests to connect science and conservation. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Georgia in 1997.
This plenary session will cover the development of new, effective inventory and monitoring techniques for bats as well as the current status, extent, and effects of White Nose Syndrome on bat populations across the eastern United States.
Susan Loeb is a research ecologist with the U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station whose current research includes the ecology of threatened and sensitive species such as the Indiana bat and Rafinesque’s big-eared bat and the effects of forest management practices on habitat use and community structure. Loeb develops and tests methods to monitor bat populations across the landscape and was instrumental in developing the North American Bat Monitoring Program (NABat)—a multi-agency effort designed to address the lack of large-scale, long-term monitoring data for all 47 bat species shared among the United States, Canada, and Mexico facing stressors such as White Nose Syndrome, forest loss and fragmentation, wind energy development, and climate change. In February 2014, Loeb received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Southeastern Bat Diversity Network, honoring her decades of research on bat ecology and conservation. In 2010 and in 2008, Loeb received the U.S. Forest Service Wings Across the Americas Bat Conservation Award. She received her Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis in 1987.
This presentation will describe experiences and early results from the North Carolina Urban/Suburban Black Bear Study, designed to map strategies for managing bear populations that use developed areas. Ultimately this will lead to better coexistence of black bears and humans.
Nick Gould is an ecologist with emphases in animal space use, behavioral ecology, and human-wildlife interactions. He leads the North Carolina Urban/Suburban Black Bear Study, a collaborative project between North Carolina State University and the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission and the first study of its kind in the southeastern United States. Gould and his research team are collecting data on survival rates, causes of mortalities, and movements and activity patterns of bears in urban/suburban areas in Asheville, North Carolina, where human and bear habitats increasingly overlap. Using collars equipped with GPS devices, the researchers are studying and modeling the bears’ travel corridors and determining locations and characteristics of den sites. Results from their five-year study will assist the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission in developing science-based management strategies for bear populations. Gould has held positions with Hayden-Wing Associates, LLC, Colorado State University in partnership with the U.S. Navy, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, and the University of Wyoming. He is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Wildlife Biology at North Carolina State University.
This plenary session will reflect on working at the interface between quantitative landscape ecology and modeling and practical problems associated with large-scale ecology over broad areas associated with military installations that face unique ecological responsibilities, challenges, and opportunities.
Jim Westervelt has worked in landscape research since 1979 with the Construction Engineering Research Laboratory (CERL), which is part of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Engineer Research and Development Center and co-located with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Some of Westervelt’s research areas have involved the design, development, and application of the GRASS GIS; urban growth modeling; alternative regional development futures; species-specific individual-based simulation modeling; modeling of megacity dynamics; system-dynamics modeling of conflict areas; optimal allocation of spatial resources; and most recently, forecasting climate change impacts on military installation mission capacities. He has held adjunct and visiting researcher positions at the University in the departments of Urban and Regional Planning, Agriculture and Consumer Economics, and Geography. He has published widely across the various research endeavors and has collaborated with many academic and government researchers across the country. Westervelt’s most recent book, Ecologist-Developed Spatially Explicit Dynamic Landscape Models, is an invitation for ecologists to capture their understandings of natural systems in landscape models and contains examples from models developed by his students. He received his Ph.D. in regional planning from the University of Illinois.