EBIO student's Honors Thesis submissions from past years are archived here with abstracts from the student's respective papers. Peruse several of the submissions to get a sense of the area's of study our students delve into for their Honors Thesis projects.

Landscape Patterns of Litter Decomposition in Alpine Tundra - H. A. O'Lear and T. R. Seastedt - 1994

Effects of Mobile Tree Islands on Soil Carbon Storage in Tundra Ecosystems - Sheridan J. Pauker and T. R. Seastedt - 1996

Effects of Sequestered Iridoid Glycosides on Prey Choice of the Prairie Wolf Spider, Lycosa carolinensis - Demetri Hilario Theodoratus and M. Deane Bowers - 1998

Effects of Soil Nitrogen Reduction on Nonnative Plants in Restored Grasslands - K.J. Reever Morghan & T. R. Seastedt - 1999

Phylogeny of hammerhead sharks (Family Sphyrnidae) inferred from mitochondrial and nuclear genes -  Douglas D. Lim, Philip Motta, Kyle Mara, Andrew P. Martin - 2010

Beyond immunity: quantifying the efects of host anti-parasite behavior on parasite transmission -  Elizabeth W. Daly & Pieter T. J. Johnson - 2011

Land Use and Wetland Spatial Position Jointly Determine Amphibian Parasite Communities - Richard B. Hartson,  Sarah A. Orlofske,  Vanessa E. Melin,  Robert T. Dillon Jr., and Pieter T. J. Johnson - 2011

Effects of fuels reductions on plant communities and soils in a Piñon-juniper woodland - M.R. Ross, S.C. Castle, N.N. Barger - 2012

Investigating the dispersal routes used by an invasive amphibian, Lithobates catesbeianus, in human-dominated landscapes - Anna C. Peterson & Katherine L. D. Richgels & Pieter T. J. Johnson & Valerie J. McKenzie - 2012

Incorporation of an Introduced Weed into the Diet of a Native Butterfly: Consequences for Preference, Performance and Chemical Defense - Angela Knerl & M. Deane Bowers 

Quantifying the biomass of parasites to understand their role in aquatic communities - Jason Lambden & Pieter T. J. Johnson - 2013

Conceptual Revision and Synthesis of Proximate Factors Associated with Age-Related Improvement in Reproduction - Rachel J Bradley & Rebecca J. Safran - 2014

Patterns and ecological predictors of age-related performance in female North American barn swallows, Hirundo rustica erythrogaster  R. J. Bradley & J. K. Hubbard & B. R. Jenkins & R. J. Safran - 2014


A group of wallabies poses for the camera.

The Effects of Provisioning on Behavior of the Allied Rock-Wallaby (Petrogale assimilis) - Melina Roth - 2015

Jan. 8, 2016

Abstract Wildlife provisioning, the feeding of wild animals, is often a component of wildlife tourism in Australia -- tourism provides an important revenue source for the economy and is forecast to continue and grow. Therefore, the study of wildlife provisioning is necessary to understand and minimize its adverse effects. My...

Map depicting a sample distribution of species in the Middle East and Asia.

How Do Absence Data Predict the Performance of Species Distribution Models? - Rebecca Pederson - 2015

Jan. 8, 2016

Abstract Species distribution maps are a fundamental data source for ecologists and evolutionary biologist that connect more broadly into policy, management, and society. These maps are not unfamiliar to the general public, often found in field guides and park brochures. Today, species distribution mapping and modeling can be done at...

Field containing different-colored patches of vegetation.

Effects of Carbon Quantity and Plant Diversity on Pathogen Suppression by Soil-borne Streptomyces - Nuttapon Pombubpa - 2015

Jan. 8, 2016

Abstract Members of the genus Streptomyces are some of the best candidates for biological control of soil-borne pathogenic bacteria. Antibiotic production by Streptomyces is thought to be crucial for this strain’s ability to compete with other closely related soil microorganisms. Furthermore, Streptomyces is able to not only inhibit the growth...

An alert pika atop a rock.

Behavioral Baselines and Modeling in a Changing Climate: Relating Temperature to the Summertime Behavior of the American Pika (Ochotona princeps) in the southern Rocky Mountains of Colorado - Meghan Wiebe - 2015

Jan. 8, 2016

Abstract Small mammals that make use of sub-surface microclimates may be able to adapt quickly to a warming climate by altering the level and timing of certain surface activities. For example, energy-intensive territorial defense or foraging activities might be shifted to cooler times of day. This hypothesis was explored using...

Two baboons observe their surroundings.

A Study of the Relationship between Habitat and Behavior in Papio anubis - Madison Beran - 2015

Jan. 8, 2016

Abstract Fragmentation, the division of continuous habitats into smaller patches of lower total area, isolated from each other by a matrix of dissimilar habitats, is an ever-increasing process that results in wild animals and people living in closer proximity with one another. Closeness of wild animals to people presents challenges...

Humpback limia swimming.

Female preference and courtship behavior of Limia nigrofasciata - Katie Holz - 2015

Jan. 8, 2016

Abstract The humpback limia ( Limia nigrofasciata ) is a sexually dimorphic (with males and females with different physical features), livebearing fish from the Family Poeciliidae that is endemic to (occurs exclusively to) Lake Miragoane in Haiti. My thesis assesses the role of fish size and courtship behavior of male...

Is Territory Switching Adaptive? Effects of Predation on Within-Season Nesting Dispersal in Barn Swallows, Hirundo rustica erythrogaster - Kyle Donahue - 2015

Jan. 8, 2016

Abstract Many animals are territorial during the breeding season. The defense of a particular territory is often dynamic, leading to a pattern of territory switching during, or between, successive breeding attempts. Territory establishment and defense are viewed as costly behaviors, and questions remain about the potential factors leading to, as...

Honeybees in a hive.

Behavioral Syndromes in Individual Honeybees (Apis mellifera) - Amelia Weller - 2015

Jan. 6, 2016

Abstract Behavior can be defined as a response to a stimulus due to an individual’s unique genotype and environment. As behaviors are expressed across contexts and over time it becomes personality. While personality has been studied extensively in vertebrates, it is only beginning to be investigated in insects. Considering the...

Map of the Bay Area zooming in to show parasites within a tadpole within a pond.

Endohelminths from avian hosts in the San Francisco Bay Area of California, USA - Emily R. Hannon - 2015

Jan. 6, 2016

Abstract Parasites can influence important ecosystem characteristics, such as biomass, biodiversity, food webs, and species interactions. Parasites of birds, in particular, offer a unique opportunity to test questions about parasites with complex life cycles (those that require more than one host for completion) and how host life history traits affect...

Ecological Drivers and Species Interactions of Whirling Disease - Julie Allyson Byle - 2014

Jan. 8, 2014

Abstract Whirling disease is on the rise since its introduction in the United States in 1958 and is a health problem both in fisheries and in wild populations of salmonids. Prevalence of the disease is dependent on ecological context and interactions among multiple other species, including algal species such as...