Behind the Science: Research Reports

Research by Conservancy scientists helps inform others working on conservation issues.

Conservancy scientists play a dual-role in advancing conservation science: developing cutting-edge research and tools, and communicating their results to a wider audience. Recent reports written by Conservancy scientists will help others in conservation biology and beyond learn from our hits and misses.

(Reports are listed according to publication year, then alphabetically by lead author. Nature Conservancy authors are in bold.)


Fleming, G.M., J.M. Wunderle, Jr., and D.N. Ewert. 2016. Diet preferences of goats in subtropical broadleaf scrub and implications for habitat management. Tropical Ecology 57(2):279-297. http://data.fs.usda.gov/research/pubs/iitf/ja_iitf_2016_Fleming001.pdf 



Agostini, V.N., S.W. Margles, J.K. Knowles, S.R. Schill, R.J. Bovino, and R.J. Blyther. 2015. Marine zoning in St. Kitts and Nevis: a design for sustainable management in the Caribbean. Ocean & Coastal Management, 104:1-10.

Allan, J.D., S.D.P Smith, P.B. McIntyre, C.A. Joseph, C.E. Dickerson, A.L Marino, R.G. Biel, J.C. Olson, P.J. Doran, R.S. Rutherford, J. E. Adkins, and A.O. Adeyemo. 2015. Using cultural ecosystem services to inform restoration priorities in the Laurentian Great Lakes. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 13: 418–424.

​Cross, M.D., K.V. Root, C.J. Mehne, J. McGowan-Stinkski, D. Pearsall, and J.C. Gillingham. 2015. Multi-scale responses of Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus catenatus) to prescribed fire. The American Midland Naturalist, 173:346-362.

Ewert, D.N.K.R. Hall, R.J. Smith, and P.G. Rodewald. 2015. Landbird stopover in the Great Lakes region: Integrating Habitat Use and Climate Change in Conservation. Studies in Avian Biology 47:17-46.

Fleming, G.M., J.M. Wunderle, Jr., D.N. Ewert, and J.J. O’Brien. 2015. Functional attributes of two subtropical shrubs and implications for the distribution and management of endangered bird habitat. Journal of Plant Ecology

​Gantz, C.A., D.R. Gordon, C.L. Jerde, R.P. Keller, W.L. Chadderton, P.D. Champion, and D.M. Lodge. 2015. Managing the introduction and spread of non-native aquatic plants in the Laurentian Great Lakes: A regional risk assessment approach. Management of Biological Invasions, 6(1):45-55. 

​Mcleod, E., S.W. Margles Weis, S. Wongbusarakum, M. Gombos, A. Dazé, ‎ A. Otzelberger, A. Hammill, V. Agostini, D. Urena Cot, and M. Wiggins. 2015. Community-based climate vulnerability and adaptation tools: a review of tools and their applications. DOI: 10.1080/08920753.2015.1046809.

Neeson, T., M.C. Ferris, M.W. Diebel, P.J. Doran, J.R. O’Hanley, and P.B. McIntyre. 2015. Enhancing ecosystem restoration efficiency through spatial and temporal coordination. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 112:6236-6241.

Sampath, P. V., H-S. Liao, Z. K. Curtis, P. J. Doran, M. E. Herbert, C. A. May, and S-G. Li. 2015. Understanding the Groundwater Hydrology of a Geographically-Isolated Prairie Fen: Implications for Conservation. PLoS ONE 10(10): e0140430. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0140430.

​Shepard, C., B. Gilmer, J. DeQuattro, S.W. Margles Weis, A. Blejwas, and R. Bendick. 2015. Charting restoration: Gulf restoration priorities and funded projects five years after Deepwater Horizon. Washington DC: The Nature Conservancy.

Sparks, E.L., J. Cebrian, C.R. Tobias, and C.A. May. 2015. Groundwater nitrogen processing in northern Gulf of Mexico restored marshes. Journal of Environmental Management 150:206-215.

Wang, C. M. L.A. Riseng, K.E. Mason, E.S. Wehrly, J.E. Rutherford, C. McKenna, Jr, L.B. Castiglione, D.M. Johnson, D.M. Infante, S.P. Sowa, M. Robertson, J. Schaeffer, M. Khoury, J. Gaiot, T. Hollenhorst, C. Brooks, and M. Coscarelli. 2015. A spatial classification and database for management, research, and policy making: the Great Lakes aquatic habitat framework. Journal of Great Lakes Research,41(2):584-596


Agostini, V.N., and S.W. Margles. 2014. Marine Fisheries, social vulnerability and risk. Coasts at Risk: An Assessment of Coastal Risks and the Role of Environmental Solutions, 49-58. A joint publication of United Nations University - Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS), The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the Coastal Resources Center (CRC) at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography.

Barnes, M.A., C.L. Jerde, M.E. Wittmann, W.L. Chadderton, J. Ding, J. Zhang, M. Purcell, M. Budhathoki, and D.M. Lodge. 2014. Geographic selection bias of occurrence data influences transferability of invasive Hydrilla verticillata distribution models. Ecology and Evolution, 4, 2584–2593. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ece3.1120.

Barnes, M.A., C.R. Turner, C.L. Jerde, M.A. Renshaw, W.L. Chadderton, and D.M. Lodge. 2014. Environmental conditions influence eDNA persistence in aquatic systems. Environmental Science and Technology, 48(3): 1819-1827.

Chadderton, W.L. 2014. Application of environmental DNA detection methods in management of aquatic invasive species: Lessons learnt from an impending Asian carp invasion of the Laurentian Great Lakes, USA. Eds. W. Fulton and K. Hall. Forum Proceedings: Carp Management in Australia — State of Knowledge. Melbourne, June 19–20, 2012. 42-46.

Davis, M., D. Brown, H. Robertson, and W.L. Chadderton. 2014. How well does LCDB2 map wetlands in the Wellington region? DOC Research and Development Series, 341: 21p.

Ewert, D.N., C.L. Roy, G.J. Soulliere, and R.J. Pierce. 2014. Stakeholder input for revision of the Upper Mississippi River and Great Lakes Region Joint Venture Landbird Habitat Conservation Strategy. Upper Mississippi River and Great Lakes Region Joint Venture Technical Report No. 2014-1.

Fleming, G.M., J.M. Wunderle, Jr., D.N. Ewert, and J.J. O’Brien. 2014. Estimating plant biomass in early-successional subtropical vegetation using a visual obstruction technique. Applied Vegetation Science 17:356-366.

Fore, J., S.P. Sowa, D. Galat, G. Annis, D. Diamond, and C. Rewa. 2014. Riverine threat indices to assess watershed condition and identify primary management capacity of agriculture natural resource management agencies. Environmental Management 53(3):567-82.

​Handler, S., M.J. Duveneck, L. Iverson, E. Peters, R.M. Scheller, K.R. Wythers, L. Brandt, P. Butler, M. Janowiak, P.D. Shannon, C. Swanston, A.C. Eagle, J.G. Cohen, R. Corner, P.B. Reich, T. Baker, S. Chhin, E. Clark, D. Fehringer, J. Fosgitt, J. Gries, C. Hall, K.R. Hall, R. Heyd, C.L. Hoving, I. Ibáñez, D. Kuhr, S. Matthews, J. Muladore, K. Nadelhoffer, D. Neumann, M. Peters, A. Prasad, M. Sands, R. Swaty, L. Wonch, J. Daley, M. Davenport, M.R. Emery, G. Johnson, L. Johnson, D. Neitzel, A. Rissman, C. Rittenhouse, and R. Ziel. 2014. Michigan forest ecosystem vulnerability assessment and synthesis: a report from the Northwoods Climate Change Response Framework project. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-129. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station. 229 p.

Januchowski-Hartley, S.R., M. Diebel, P.B. McIntyre, and P.J. Doran. 2014. Predicting road culvert passability for migratory fishes. Diversity and Distributions 20: 1414–1424. doi: 10.1111/ddi.12248

Sieracki, J. L., J.M. Bossenbroek, and W.L. Chadderton. 2014. A spatial modeling approach to predicting the secondary spread of invasive species due to ballast water discharge. PLoS ONE, 9(12):e114217. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0114217.

Smith, S.D.P., P.B. McIntyre, B.S. Halpern, R.M. Cooke, A.L. Marino, G.L. Boyer, A. Buchsbaum, G.A. Burton Jr., L.M. Campbell, J.J.H. Ciborowski, P.J. Doran, D.M. Infante, L.B. Johnson, J.G. Read, J.B. Rose, E.S. Rutherford, A.D. Steinman, and J.D. Allan. In press. Rating impacts in a multi-stressor world: A quantitative assessment of 50 stressors affecting the Great Lakes. Ecological Applications. http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/14-0366.1

Sowa, S.P. 2014. IMDS: Informing the logistics of the conservation enterprise. Michigan State of the Great Lakes 2013, Office of the Great Lakes, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, 23.

Tucker, A.J. and C.E. Williamson. 2014. The invasion window for warmwater fish in clearwater lakes: the role of ultraviolet radiation and temperature. Diversity and Distributions, 20, 181-192.

Wittmann, M.E., C. L. Jerde, J.G. Howeth, S.P. Maher, A.M. Deines, J.A. Jenkins, G.W. Whitledge, S.R. Burbank, W.L. Chadderton, A.R. Mahon, J.T. Tyson, C.A. Gantz, R.P. Keller, J.M. Drake, and D.M. Lodge. 2014. Grass carp in the Great Lakes region: establishment potential, expert perceptions, and re-evaluation of experimental evidence of ecological impact. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 71, 992–999.

Wunderle, J.M., Jr., P.K. Lebow, J.D. White, D. Currie, and D.N. Ewert. 2014. Sex and age differences in site fidelity, food resources tracking and body condition of wintering Kirtland’s Warblers (Setophaga kirtlandii) in The Bahamas. Ornithological Monographs 80:1-62.