Wildlife trapping field coordinator – Graduate Student Researcher

Yale University
New Haven, CT
2008 – 2012

Wrestling with a flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans)
  • Trapped small mammals and mist-netted birds, examined and collected ectoparasites.
  • Planned study design and logistics; planned travel and acquired necessary tools and equipment within limited budget.
  • Hired, trained, and supervised a team of five field and laboratory technicians.
  • Designed database (Microsoft Access) and wrote R program code for data analysis.

Lyme disease ecology – Field Technician

Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies
Millbrook, NY

Peromyscus leucopus
  • Trapped, handled, identified, and assessed reproductive condition of small mammals. Identified parasitic ticks and life stages. Data collection contributed to long-term studies of the ecology of Lyme disease transmission.
  • Collected ticks by drag cloth.
  • Assayed tick samples for Lyme disease-causing bacterium: dissected ticks and prepared slides for fluorescent antibody analysis by microscopy.
  • Identified seedlings and seeds of the Eastern deciduous forest.
  • Entered data in Microsoft Excel.

Moth ears in a bat-free environment, French Polynesia – Undergraduate Student Researcher

Richard B. Gump Field Station
Mo’orea, French Polynesia

View from Mt. Aorai, Tahiti, one of my collecting sites

View from Mt. Aorai, Tahiti, one of my collecting sites

As part of a semester-long course on the Biology and Geomorphology of Tropical Islands, conducted on the island of Mo’orea (sister island to Tahiti):

  • Designed and conducted an independent field research project, “Geometrid moth systematics and retention of the tympanal organ in the absence of bat predation.”
  • Collected, identified, dissected, measured, and preserved moths.
Cleora spp.

Cleora spp.

  • Generated phylogeny of moths based on morphological characteristics and mapped sizes of the tympanal organ to see if moths endemic to these islands showed evidence of tympanal degradation. No degradation was observed based on diameter of the tympanum.

Costa Rican bats & batflies – Undergraduate Student Researcher

Monteverde Institute
Monteverde, Costa Rica

Sturnira ludovici, Monteverde, Costa Rica

As part of a tropical ecology-focused study abroad program,

  • Designed and conducted an independent field research project, “Cospeciation of parasitic streblid batflies and their microchiropteran hosts.”
  • Mist-netted, identified, marked, and removed ectoparasites from bats. Collected, preserved, and identified batflies.
  • Used microscopic morphological characters to generate a phylogeny of batflies and compared it to the bat host phylogeny. High elevation bat species and their batflies have similar phylogenetic structure, and may have cospeciated in relative isolation.
Strebla hertigi, Monteverde, Costa Rica