Courses taught

Class observes fish marking
Wildlife Ecology and Research (BIO 407)
My goal in this course is to provide students with hands-on experience and exposure to a wide range of wildlife research methods for field studies and data analysis as well as core elements of wildlife ecology which will help prepare them for technical jobs with wildlife and natural resource agencies and graduate school programs.  We cover study and sampling designs, wildlife capture techniques, marking and tracking animal movements, habitat use and selection, fragmentation and disturbance, wildlife diseases, and conservation and management issues.  OIT is well placed in the upper Klamath Basin to explore a fantastic diversity of habitats and wildlife species just out our back door.

Photo: Students observe USGS fisheries biologists tagging endangered Lost River Suckers along the WIlliamson River while Dave Hewitt (USGS) explains how this capture-recapture data using remote antennas is used to estimate survival.
Students at Crater Lake National Park
Crater Lake Ecology
As part of the Summer Institute at Oregon Tech, I am offering a series of intensive summer field courses at OIT.  In summer 2014 our focus was Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths).  We studied ecology, biology, and field research methods of lepidoptera.  Students also participated in the 2014 Lepidoptera BioBlitz, a citizen science event at Crater Lake National Park as assistant trip leaders working directly with experts and national park staff.  As part of the course we spent a week camping in Crater Lake National Park and exploring the diversity of ecosystems that occur there through the "lens" of butterflies.  Future courses will focus on a range of different taxa.

​Photo: ​OIT students, graduate students from Southern Oregon University, national park staff, and other regional scientists identify butterfly species during the 2014 Lepidoptera BioBlitz at Crater Lake National Park.  Photo by David Grimes.
Bahama Parrots

Conservation Biology
Winter 2015 I will be teaching Conservation Biology, a new course at Oregon Tech.  Conservation Biology is the science and practice that seeks to understand biological diversity, the factors that are threatening it, and ways we can manage, protect, and restore it.  Topics we study include ecosystem services, habitat loss and fragmentation, overharvesting, invasive species, climate change vulnerability and adaptation, fire ecology and forest management, endangered species and extinction, and conservation planning and practice.  We will have guest lectures by professionals from a wide range of disciplines and backgrounds. 

Photo: Endangered Bahama Parrots endemic to Abaco Island where they have been devastated by habitat loss, invasive species, and collection for the pet trade.  Photo by Jherime Kellermann
Students measure plant density
Principles of Biology (BIO211 & 212)
This series of courses offered during fall and winter terms introduces students to key topics in biology and ecology.  In BIO211 students explore biodiversity, the history of life on earth over the past 4 billion years, Darwinian evolution, and the origins of land plants and animals.  We then take a phylogenetic tour through the biodiversity of Earth from tunicates to primates.  In BIO212 we begin with and introduction to genetics, then progress through behavioral ecology, community ecology, landscape and ecosystem ecology, biosphere, global change, restoration ecology, and conservation biology.  Lectures in both courses are complimented by labs that explore the biology of organisms and their ecology both inside the lab and outdoors. 

Photo: Students in BIO212 measure plant distributions in the hills behind OIT campus during a lab.
Neural tube of mouse embryo
Developmental Biology (BIO352)
In this course we explore primarily vertebrate development  from the point of fertilization, through embryonic and post-embryonic development to senescence.  We explore the complex roles and interactions of genetics, epigenetics, proteins, bacteria and microbes, and the environment.  We examine how teratogens such as endocrine disruptors are affecting the development of humans and wildlife and their relationships to cancer and other diseases. 

Photo: Neural tube differentiation and formation in a mouse embryo marked with fluorescent proteins.