Principle Investigator:

Dr. Lee FitzgeraldDr. Lee A. Fitzgerald
Professor; Curator – Biodiversity Research and Teaching Collections (BRTC)
PhD 1993, University of New Mexico
Research Focus: Evolutionary ecology and conservation biology of amphibians and reptiles

Lab Personnel:

Erin Buchholtz
PhD Candidate
B.A. 2011, Princeton University, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Research Focus: Landscape ecology of human-elephant conflict in northern Botswana, focusing on connectivity
Kristina Chyn
PhD Candidate
B.S. 2014, Cornell University, Science of Natural and Environmental Systems
Research Focus: Effects of road networks on reptiles and amphibians in insular systems, specifically Taiwan and Australia
Mason Lee

MSc Student

Research Focus:
Mickey Parker
PhD Student
B.S. 2006, Purdue University
Research Focus: Ecological restoration of the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard (Sceloporus arenicolus) in west Texas

Former Postdocs:

  • Dr. Felix B. Cruz CONICET Investigator, National University, Bariloche, Argentina
  • Dr. Gabriela Perotti CONICET Investigator, National University, Bariloche, Argentina

Former Research Associate:

  • Laura R. Laurencio, Research Assistant and ABS webmaster, Texas A&M University

Former Graduate Students:

  • Dr. Danielle Walkup (Ph.D. 2018)
    Dissertation Title: Landscape Fragmentation Disrupts the Structure of Population of an Endemic Habitat Specialist Leading to Local Extinctions
  • Dr. Nicole Angeli (Ph.D. 2017)
    Dissertation Title: Identifying Mechanisms of Persistence for Ground Lizards (Reptilia: Ameiva) in the Caribbean Informed by Habitat, Physiology, and Predation
    Currently working as Chief of Wildlife at the Division of Fish and Wildlife, Department of Planning and Natural Resources, U.S. Virgin Islands (website)
  • Dr. Chris Schalk (Ph.D. 2016)
    Dissertation Title: Community Assembly of Neotropical Frogs Across Ecological Scales
    Currently Assistant Professor of Forest Wildlife Management, Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches, TX (website)
  • Dr. Mike Treglia (M.S. 2010; Ph.D. 2014)
    Thesis Title: A Translocated Population of the St. Croix Ground Lizard: Analyzing its Detection Probability and Investigating Its Impacts on the Local Prey Base
    Dissertation Title: Multi-Scale Conservation in an Altered Landscape: The Case of the Endangered Arroyo Toad in Southern California
    Currently working as a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the University of Tulsa, with Dr. Ron Bonett
  • Dr. Nicole Smolensky (M.S. 2008; Ph.D. 2014)
    Thesis Title: Population Estimation and Effects of Oil and Gas Development on Dune-dwelling Lizards
    Dissertation Title: Biodiversity Conservation in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Case Study of the African Dwarf Crocodiles (Osteolaemus spp.)
    Currently working as Adjunct Faculty at Lone Star College in Houston, Texas
  • Mike Hill
    Currently working for Hawks Aloft, Inc. as a GIS Specialist and Biologist.
  • Rosa Leny Cuellar
    Currently: Director, Kaa-Iya del Gran Chaco National Park, Santa Cruz, Bolivia.
  • Dr. Daniel J. Leavitt (Ph.D. 2012)
  • Thesis Title: Ecological consequences of landscape fragmentation on the lizard community of the Mescalero-Monahans Shinnery Sands
    Currently working as Wildlife Specialist at the Arizona Game and Fish Department.
  • Drew Dittmer (M.S. 2012)
    Thesis Title: Sexual Dimorphism in Sceloporus undulatus complex
    Currently PhD Student at University of Newcastle studying the community ecology of culturally important water holes in Uluru Kata-Tjtuta National Park.
  • Heather Prestridge (M.S. 2009)
    Thesis Title: Amphibian and Reptile Trade in Texas: Current Status and Trends
    Currently working as Assistant Curator at the Texas Cooperative Wildlife Collection at Texas A&M University.
  • Amanda Subalusky (M.S. 2007)
    Thesis Title: The role of seasonal wetlands in the ecology of the American alligator
    Currently in doctoral program at Yale University studying under Dr. David M. Post.
  • David Laurencio (M.S. 2007)
    Thesis Title: Environmental correlates to amphibian and reptile diversity in Costa Rica
    Currently in doctoral program at Auburn University studying under Dr. Craig Guyer. (website)
  • Dr. David Henderson (M.S. 2006) – Non-thesis
    Paper Title: An Introduction to the Mescalero Sands Ecosystem
    Currently Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy and Religion, Western Carolina University (website)
  • Dr. Gage Dayton (M.S. 2001; Ph.D. 2005)
    Dissertation Title: Community assembly of xeric-adapted anurans at multiple spatial scales
    Thesis Title: Abiotic and biotic factors affecting nonrandom distributions of Chihuahuan Desert Anurans
    Currently working as administrative director of the UC Santa Cruz Natural Reserve System.
  • Dr. Dan Saenz (Ph.D. 2004)
    Dissertation Title: Ecological correlates of anuran breeding activity and community structure
    Currently working for the U.S. Forest Service as a Research Wildlife Biologist
  • Margarita Mieres (M.S. 2002)
    Thesis Title: Monitoring and managing the harvest of tegu lizards in Paraguay
    Currently in doctoral program at Texas A&M University studying under Dr. William Grant.
  • Dr. Wade Ryberg (M.S. 2002)
    Thesis Title: Genetic relationships of American alligator populations distributed across different ecological and geographic scales
    Currently working as a postdoctoral research associate in this lab.
  • Claudia Ceballos (M.S. 2001)
    Thesis Title: Native and exotic freshwater turtle and tortoise trade in Texas
    Currently in doctoral program at Iowa State University under Dr. Nicole Valenzuela. (website)
  • Rossy Montaño (Licenciatura 2001: Santa Cruz University, Bolivia)
    Currently Biologist at Wildlife Conservation Society-Bolivia and Curator of Herpetology at Museo de Historia Natural Noell Kempf Mercado, Santa Cruz Bolivia.
  • Dr. Toby Hibbitts (M.S. 2000)
    Thesis Title: Morphological and ecological convergence in two natricine snakes
    Currently Curator of Amphibians and Reptiles at the Texas Cooperative Wildlife Collection at Texas A&M University. (website)
  • Ryan E. Nelson (M.S. 1999)
    Thesis Title: Habitat selection and thermal biology of a large aquatic ectotherm, the alligator snapping turtle (Macroclemys temminckii)
  • Dr. Laura E. Vega, (PhD 1999, Universidad Nacional Mar del Plata, Argentina)
    Currently Vertebrate Lab Coordinator at Universidad Nacional Mar del Plata, Argentina.
  • Christina Morales, (M.S. 1996, UNELLEZ, Venezuela)
    Currently Minister of Environment (Secretaria del Medioambiente), Paraguay.

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