Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources
Co-advisor: Dr. Jeff Hepinstall-Cymerman
Co-advisor: Dr. Elizabeth King
Lab Website (Dr. Jeff Hepinstall-Cymerman Spatial Lab)
Lab Website (Dr. Elizabeth King)
Ecosystem services and conservation of bats in transboundary agricultural landscapes.
My general interest is in bat conservation and ecology. More specifically, I am interested in studying how bats provide vital ecosystem services (such as pest control and pollination) in agricultural landscapes and how farmers can incorporate bats into their management strategies. I am currently working with the conservation of threatened and endangered nectar-feeding bats that pollinate agaves in Mexico, which we use for products like tequila and mezcal. In my work, I am seeking to understand the social, political, and economic contexts of agave harvest, management, and use, both on a national scale (looking at tequila and mezcal production) and on a more local scale in northeast Mexico (where agaves are harvested for local consumption). I am also conducting foraging studies of the bats to determine their foraging requirements. The ultimate goal of my research is to understand what types of conservation strategies (e.g. bat-friendly agave management) might work best in different areas, and to understand how we can implement these strategies.
This research is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.