The WHAPA Lab: Home to Quite Possibly the most Famous Graduate Students in the World

(Certainly the Most Beloved)

Current Students

Christine Proctor

co-advised with Dr Mike Vaughan and Dr Dean Stauffer

Red Wolf Movement and Habitat Use in the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge

Anne Hilborn, 2017

The effect of individual variability and larger carnivores on the functional response of cheetahs. Twitter: @AnneWHilborn

Erin Poor, 2018

jointly with the GeoSpatial Programme

A multiscale analysis and quantification of human impacts on Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae) habitat in Riau, Sumatra. Twitter: @ee_poor

Ben Augustine, 2017

Improving Density Estimation of Wildlife Populations with Noninvasive Sampling using Spatial Partial Identity. Twitter: @BenCAugustine

Chris Rowe, 2017

The influence of habitat features and co-occurring species on puma (Puma concolor) occupancy across eight sites in Belize, Central America. Twitter: @chrisrowebot

Chris Satter, 2016

Estimating population density and survival of ocelots in six study sites over multiple years in Belize, Central America. Twitter: @chrissatter1

Lindsey Rich, 2016

Monitoring and Conserving Wildlife Communities across Northern Botswana

Dana Morin, 2015

Spatial Ecology and Demography of Eastern Coyotes in Western Virginia

Asia Murphy, 2015

The Biodiversity Mirage: the Effects of Habitat Degradation and Exotic Predators on Ground-Dwelling Forest Birds, Tenrecs and Lemurs in Northeastern Madagascar. Twitter: @am_anatiala

Zack Farris, 2014

Impacts of Fragmentation on the Malagasy Carnivore Community

Kanchan Thapa, 2014

Tiger Conservation in the Terai Arc Landscape, Nepal

Mamadou Daha Kane, 2014

Estimating abundance, density, and occupancy of lion, leopard and serval in the Niokolo Koba National Park in Senegal

David Montague, 2014

Diet and Feeding Ecology of the Coyote in Western Virginia

Bernardo Mesa, 2014

Assessment of Anthropogenic Impacts Trough Non-Invasive Glucocorticoid Measurements on Belizean Jaguar (Panthera onca goldmani) Populations

Claudia Wultsch, 2013

Non-Invasive tracking of jaguars (Panthera onca) and co-occurring feline species in Belize by genotyping feces and remote camera trapping

Sunarto, 2011

co-advised with Dr Mike Vaughan

Ecology of Tigers and Their Prey in Riau, Sumatra

Mike St Germain, 2012

Bat Habitat Ecology Using Remote Acoustical Detectors at the Army National Guard Manoeuvre Training Center--Fort Pickett, Blackstone, Virginia

Catherine Tredick, 2011

co-advised with Dr Mike Vaughan

Ecology of black bears in Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Arizona: Managing bear-human conflict in a changing environment

Greg Batts, 2008

An assessment of Quality Deer Management on a Private Hunt Club in the Virginia Piedmont

Miranda Davis, 2009

Co-Varying Predator Densities and Mesopredator Release of the Ocelot across Five Study Sites in Belize

Jeff Kaminski (1971--2004), 2006

Disturbance Effects on Small Mammal Communities in a Managed Appalachian Forest

Adam Dillon, 2005

Ocelot Density and Home Range in Belize, Central America: Camera-Trapping and Radio Telemetry

Peter Laver, 2005

Cheetah of the Serengeti Plains: A Home Range Analysis

Kate Wright Kelly, 2005

co-advised with Dr Carola Haas

Model Validation and Improvement using New Data on Habitat Characteristics Important to Forest Salamanders, and Short-Term Effects of Forestry Practices on Salamander Movement and Population Estimates

Dr. Marcella Kelly is a Professor in the Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation (FWC) in the College of Natural Resources and Environment (CNRE) at Virginia Tech. Her research focuses on estimating demographic parameters for difficult-to-track large, forest-dwelling carnivores in order to promote biodiversity conservation. Dr. Kelly uses remotely-triggered cameras and non-invasive genetic sampling over large landscapes to determine population size or density, population trends over time, survival rates, sex ratios, and genetic population structure and connectivity. She also used GPS collaring, critter-cam collaring, and captive animal holding to study space use, resource selection, foraging ecology, and behavior. Her research has resulted in over 100 peer-reviewed scientific papers on population densities and trends for numerous large- and medium-sized tropical cats, space use and demography of coyotes, bobcats, and bears, and feeding ecology of numerous carnivore species. Dr. Kelly is also a member of the IUCN Cat Specialist Group responsible for reviewing the threatened and endangered status of multiple felid species.

Robert Alonso

Coyotes, Bobcats, Bears, and a crate of ACME® TNT

Chris Satter

Co-Advised with Dr Michael Cherry

Pigs, Piggies, Piglets.

Pork, Pork Pie, Pork Pie Hats


Christian Thomaz Osorio Popiolek

No Idea at Present!

Vance Nepumoceno

Slow-cooked brisket. Home Fries. Cold Brew. Sweet!

Rob Nipko

Unicorns and Rainbows. For a fact

Njambi Phillys Gichuru

Ethiopian terrestrial mammals, where they go, and what they do. Plus, when they do it

Darby McPhail

Determining the frequency of Puma-Jaguar fistfights, and the resulting effects on Felid dental health

Brogan Holcombe

Black Bears. Where they go. What they eat when they get there. How they spend their leisure time

In the Process of Floating Around Somewhere

Completed Students

David McNitt, 2019

Spatial Ecology of Bobcats (Lynx rufus) in the Appalachian Mountains of Western Virginia. Twitter: @DavidCMcNitt

Bernardo Mesa, 2018

Assessment of Physiological Challenges in Overwintering Black Bears (Ursus americanus): Active Gestation, Neonatal Growth, and Skeletal Muscle Conservation. Twitter: @mesa_bernardo