I am an ecologist and zoologist working on the first year of my doctoral degree in the Interdepartmental Doctoral Program in Anthropological Sciences (IDPAS) at Stony Brook University. I have recently focused my research in tropical rainforest habitats. I completed my Master of Research degree in Tropical Forest Ecology at Imperial College London in October of 2017, and my Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology at the University of St Andrews in June of 2016. My research interests thus far have focused primarily on the topics of animal-plant interactions, dispersal ecology, ecosystem engineering, and biostatistics. I am originally from Long Island, New York.
Recent Research Experience
Madagascar My masters thesis entitled "Does anthropogenic disturbance affect the diversity and size of seeds dispersed by lemurs?" was completed in August of 2017. For this research project I collected faecal samples from four diurnal lemur species in Ranomafana National Park across a gradient of anthropogenic disturbance. I also led a short pilot study to a newly discovered isolated rainforest fragment to collect ring-tailed lemur faecal samples. I extracted the seeds from the faeces in order to better understand Lemur catta diet and seed dispersal. This research is exciting as it is one of the first studies of L. catta in a tropical rainforest environment (this species ordinarily inhabits dry deciduous forests, spiny bush, and scrublands). I have presented some of this research at the inaugural meeting of the Malagasy Primatological Society in Tamatave, Madagascar in December of 2017, and again at the International Primatological Society’s 27th Annual Congress in Nairobi, Kenya in August of 2018.
Malaysian Borneo The Stability of Altered Forest Ecosystems (SAFE) project is one of the world's largest ongoing ecological experiments. I took part on a 3-week field course which involved the taxonomic ID of plants, vertebrates, and invertebrates, and involved hands-on experience designing, collecting, and handling ecological, biogeochemical, and biodiversity data. I received valuable experience conducting research in both the secondary and primary rainforest environments.
South Africa For myundergraduate dissertation research at the University of St Andrews, I collected data in the Greater Kruger National Park on African elephant (Loxodonta africana) damage to woody plants. Trees and shrubs were identified to the species, and damage to them by elephants was scored through time to investigate their role as ecosystem engineers in the bushveld.