This week I attended the meeting for the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB) in Austin, TX. SICB always provides a great opportunity to share ideas with a really diverse crowd of scientists and thinkers and catch up with friends and colleagues. I presented results from a project started by Amy Kostka, an undergraduate … Continue reading SICB 2020 Reflections
Many studies of stress ecology rely on determining an organism’s levels of relevant hormones, such as cortisol and corticosterone (CORT). While these hormones have many functions, organisms often increase levels of these hormones to allow them to respond effectively to stressful conditions. But this hormonal response poses its own challenge for scientists! Capturing an animal, restraining … Continue reading Quick on the (Blood) Draw: Measuring Reptile Hormone Levels
Whew! It has been a whirlwind two months getting settled into my new position as a Visiting Assistant Professor at Davidson College. I just finished my third week of teaching Integrating Concepts in Biology II (Bio 114), an intro course sequence focused on some of the key, central ideas in biology (like information, evolution, and … Continue reading Back in the Classroom Again!
The Evolution meetings are not my normal conference “home” (that honor generally goes to SICB and JMIH). However, my inaugural visit to Evolution in Guarujá Brazil in 2015 was a blast. So, with Evolution 2019 being so close in nearby Providence, I decided to make a second appearance. The meeting was, of course, a chance … Continue reading Evolution 2019 Round Up
Artificial light at night (or ALAN) is a relatively new phenomenon on the Earth. It’s only been around for the past 120 years or so, since humans developed widespread electric lights. While light at night can cause many problems for natural organisms (higher risk of predation, disruption of sleep, etc.), some organisms can take advantage … Continue reading Antiguan Anoles Use Light at Night
Back in September of last year, Janie Barbato, an amateur herpetologist, dropped me a note on iNaturalist asking me to check out one of her observations of a bark anole (Anolis distichus). She had noticed that her observation was the northernmost in Florida on iNaturalist and was wondering if I knew about bark anoles moving … Continue reading Collaborating with the Public
This past weekend I had the wonderful opportunity to attend a mini-symposium for recipients of NSF Postdoctoral Research Fellowships in Biology (PRFB) at the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. The focus of the symposium was the future of biological collections, addressing both how we should support and use collections to best effect. While most … Continue reading Discussing the Future of Biological Collections
For the past seven years or so, I’ve started the new year the same way, by attending the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB). Conveniently, the meeting is usually held in a somewhat warm (or at least not frigidly cold) location, and this year’s meeting in Tampa did not disappoint. Aside … Continue reading SICB 2019: Starting the Winter in Florida
Assessing the impacts of invasive species can be difficult. One major reason for this is that, in the case of many biological invasions, we lack appropriate sampling or data from before the invasion. In most cases, we don't know an invasive species is going to arrive, or what aspects of ecology it might impact in the … Continue reading New Paper out in Global Change Biology!
Finding a broad yet rigorous definition of stress in biological systems has been a major challenge. In our new paper led by Marco Del Giudice, we use a systems biology approach to address how control theory may shed light on the concept of stress and suggest extensions of this approach, including for studies of global change.