I am a carnivore ecologist, author, and photographer. I was born and raised in central Vermont, and I have lived throughout the American west and New Zealand. I was awarded my Ph.D. in Conservation Biology from Victoria University of Wellington in 2014, for my dissertation entitled The Ecology and Behaviour of Pumas (Puma concolor) in Northern California. I also completed post-doctoral research at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and the Santa Cruz Puma Project.
I am currenty an assistant research professor with the Illinois Natural History Survey and Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois. I am also the curator of the University’s mammal collection, and an associate editor for journal of the IUCN Felid Research Group.
My research focuses on the ecology and behavior of carnivores. My current research focused on:
a) population estimation and dynamics of carnivores
b) scent marking behavior in solitary felids
c) interspecific interactions among carnivores
d) the effects large carnivores have on their ecosystems
My graduate research focused on pumas, including their feeding ecology, communication, and effects on the scavenger community. I completed a 2-year post-doc with Chris Wilmers and the Santa Cruz Puma Project, and another 2-year post-doc with Tim Van Deelen focused on population monitoring methods for black bears and bobcats.
I am currently collaborating with projects focusing on:
- Pumas in California with Chris Wilmers
- The carnivore guild in Japan with Shinsuke Koike and Akino Inagaki
- Urban canids in Madison, Wisconsin with David Drake and Morgan Farmer
- European lynx and brown bears in eastern Europe with Miha Krofel
- Tigers and the carnivore community in Sumatra
- Leopards in Namibia with Miha Krofel and Ruben Portas
- Caracals in South Africa with Laurel Serieys
- Brown bears on Kodiak Island with Shannon Finnegan
I spend most of my spare time exploring wild areas, long-distance running, or photographing animals. I have published over 80 peer-reviewed scientific articles. As a photographer, I specialize in documentary and action photographs of North American wildlife. More photos can be found on my Photography Site and my first photography book was published in 2010.