Ecology and conservation biology.

 
A young Grasshopper Sparrow surveys its hayfield habitat in central New Jersey.

A young Grasshopper Sparrow surveys its hayfield habitat in central New Jersey.

About me

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I’m an ecologist and conservation biologist, and currently a PhD candidate in Ecology and Evolution at Rutgers University under Drs. Julie Lockwood and Joanna Burger. My research is concerned with how and why animal populations change in time and space, especially as applied to the societal challenges of conservation and biological invasions. I study these problems with a mix of fieldwork, experiments, and quantitative tools including large public data sets, time series analysis, structural equation modelling, and conceptual systems frameworks (e.g., causal modelling, social-environmental systems). Read more about my Research here →.

I value natural history observation as a source of evidence, hypotheses, and inspiration, and I love sharing my enthusiasm for discovery with students and the public. My main venues for this are an undergraduate Ornithology course which I’ve taught for 4+ years, mentoring and fieldwork with students, and leading public birding & ecology walks. I also enjoy ‘exploring’ and visualizing public data relevant to conservation issues, and sharing the results with students, researchers, and others (e.g., see here, and the Code section above). In my free time, I enjoy hanging out with my kids, hiking, skiing, camping, birding, growing food, and playing music.

A ‘meta-model’ showing potential causal relationships among factors affecting Grasshopper Sparrow populations. Icons in the figures are from  The Noun Project  (Anton, S. Demushkin, G. Furtado, Hamish, Humantech, P. Rozenberg).

A ‘meta-model’ showing potential causal relationships among factors affecting Grasshopper Sparrow populations. Icons in the figures are from The Noun Project (Anton, S. Demushkin, G. Furtado, Hamish, Humantech, P. Rozenberg).

 

“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.”

— G. Bernard Shaw, Playwright

 

Feel free to contact me with ideas or anything else! michael.allen@rutgers.edu