Dr. Andrea Litt, Assistant Professor in the Ecology Department, and her doctoral advisor, Dr. Robert Steidl, were selected by The Wildlife Society as recipients of the Wildlife Publications Award - Outstanding Monograph, for "Interactive effects of fire and nonnative plants on small mammals in grasslands." Wildlife Monographs 176:1-31. The formal announcement and presentation of the award occurred during the society's Award Ceremony on October 15th during their 19 Anual Conference in Portland, Oregon. Congratulations!

KXLF news coverage has included a story about The Jack Creek Preserve Foundation land and conservation education center near MSU. This nonprofit group is opening up 4,600 acres of land to MSU students and faculty for use as a natural laboratory. Dr. Bob Garrott, Department of Ecology and Director of the Fish and Wildlife Management Program in the department, has been a leader in working with Scott Fossel, the treasurer of the foundation and multiple MSU departments.

matandiko MSU

Dr. Wigganson Matandiko


Dr. Wigganson Matandiko has completed his first year as a PhD student in the Department of Ecology. The former ZAWA Head of Veterinary Services was awarded the prestigious Fulbright scholarship in 2011. Wigganson is co-advised by MSU Professor Dr. Scott Creel and ZCP CEO Dr. Matt Becker, affiliate assistant professor, and his research focus is on large mammal predator-prey dynamics and disease ecology in Zambia. In addition to his Fulbright Dr. Matandiko is supported through the National Science Foundation (NSF) as part of an initiative evaluating the direct and indirect impacts of large carnivores on ecosystems and the effects of carnivore removal. Zambian Carnivore Programme Quarterly Newsletter, 1st July 2012, includes additional information about the research program and connections to MSU.

"The Madison" newspaper featured the research of Jan Boyer, a graduate student ih the CooperativeFisheries Research unit of the Department of Ecology on May 17. Her study is part of the effort to understand the life cycle of native Mountain Whitefish and monitor their population with cooperation from fishermen.

MSU-Ecology was very well represented at the Montana Chapter of The Wildlife Society Meetings in Great Falls this past spring semester.  This was one of the best years we have ever had for participation. There were approximately 30 undergraduate and graduate students attending as well as 3 faculty. Fourteen oral presentations on the schedule were from our department participants. These included one faculty member, undergraduates, current MS and PhD students, and recently graduated BS students. Four graduate students also presented posters. Eleven current Ecology Department faculty were coauthors on these presentations as well as one emeritus faculty. 

Our department received a significant portion of students awards:

Best undergraduate student presentation: Elizabeth Flesch
Best MS graduate student presentation: Megan O'Reilly
Best poster presentation: Daniel Bachen
Best poster presentation: Shana Dunkley

Elizabeth Flesch was presented the Montana Chapter's Annual Wynn Freeman Award during the conference.

Dan Bachen also won a research scholarship sponsored Counter Assault, a company that manufactures bear spray products.

Dr. Robert Garrott, faculty sponsor, was enthusisastic about the participation. "Everyone had a great time, was informed and inspired by the speakers and presentations, and made lots of professional connections.  Many thanks to all the faculty that helped make this a great event for our students and encouraged your students to participate.  This meeting is the highlight of the academic year for most students who participate and it is great for our department to be so well represented at this conference which was attended by over 200 natural resource professionals and academics from Montana and the surrounding region. Many thanks to the Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society officers who did the lion's share of logistics organization to get everyone to the meetings and to all the department faculty."

The Bozeman Chronicle featured the research of Dr. Robert Garrott, director of the Fish and Wildife Ecology and Management Program, in the OutThere section in February. This research is helping to address the concern that introduced mountain goats may threaten native bighorn sheep in ecosystems surrounding Yellowstone National Park. You may want to follow this link for a brief YouTube video about the project: http://www.gyamountainungulateproject.com/videos.html.

Forty top seniors and their faculty or staff mentors were chosen to be recognized with the 30th Annual Awards for Excellence. Elizabeth Flesch, Fish and Wildlife Management Option, from Bettendorf, Iowa, and Amanda Zellar, Organismal Biology Option, from Billings, MT, will be honored at the banquest sponsored by the MSU Alumni Foundation and the Bozeman Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday, Feb. 21. Elizabeth selected Ecology professor, Dr. Robert Garrott, to attend as her mentor. The full list of students and their mentors is provided by MSU News Service with details about the presentation.

Gregg Treinish was recently recognized as one of "30 under 30" by the Christian Science Monitor as a "Modern Explorer" (p. 25). Gregg earned his second degree, the B.S. in Biological Sciences, Ecology and Evolution Option, from the Department of Ecology in 2010. In 2008 he was named "Adventurer of the Year" by National Geographic Society for his 7,800-mile trek of the Andes Mountains. He is making a difference with his Bozeman based organization, Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation. We are excited about his accomplishments. Larkin Guenther, who graduated with the same degree in December, 2011, has joined his staff as Executive Assistant. We encourage you to learn more about his organization.