Mickey Parker (EEB student, Fitzgerald Lab) will be defending his dissertation proposal this Friday at 9 am in WFES 236 and everyone is invited to attend the public portion of the proposal defense.
Title: Improving Translocation Outcomes for Habitat Specialist Species: Population Restoration of Sceloporus arenicolus in West Texas.
Use of conservation translocations to combat biodiversity loss has been steadily increasing since the 1960s, and this is projected to continue, especially in highly populated and biodiverse countries. While much of the narrative surrounding the current biodiversity crisis is focused on extinctions, population declines and range reductions are important sources of biodiversity loss and present opportunities to restore populations using conservation translocations. Research that can contribute to improving the outcomes of conservation translocations is critical for reversing biodiversity loss in the Anthropocene. My dissertation will build upon ongoing research centered on a conservation translocation of an extreme habitat specialist, the dunes sagebrush lizard (Sceloporus arenicolus), in West Texas. The aim of research is to improve success rates of reintroductions and other types of conservation translocations by examining the effects of interspecific interactions (particularly those between specialist and generalist species), habitat fragmentation, and life history on translocation outcomes, using the lizard communities of the Mescalero-Monahans Sandhills as a study system.