Faculty ProfilesDr. Elizabeth Harper
Assistant Professor of Natural Resources Ecology
Specialization: Natural Resources, Wildlife Conservation, Sustainability, Population Dynamics, Ecological Modeling, Wetlands Ecology and Policy, Watershed Management
Year joined Paul Smith's: 2009
Division: Forestry, Natural Resources, and Recreation
Fisheries and Wildlife Science
Bio: I grew up in the suburbs of Kansas City but always found a way to discover wild places near my home. Tracking mammals and catching frogs were some of my earliest experiences with wildlife.
After high school I decided to pursue biology at Middlebury College in Vermont. My interactions with the faculty there gave me the opportunity to gain a wide range of research experience from studies of pollination ecology to coral reefs in Panama.
With support from a Watson Fellowship, I spent my first year after graduation traveling to Thailand, Australia, Tanzania and Venezuela to study frogs and develop amphibian field guides.
I continued my research on amphibians as a Ph.D. student at the University of Missouri where I studied the effects of forestry practices on amphibian population dynamics. This project led to a post-doctoral position at SUNY-ESF where I developed computer simulations of amphibian population dynamics and became involved in a second post-doctoral position modeling the population dynamics of Fremont cottonwood populations in California's Central Valley.
Since joining the faculty here at Paul Smith's College, I have enjoyed the opportunity to bring my research experience into the classroom. Our unique setting in a 6 million acre protected area provides a stunning landscape in which to teach about and understand the world around us. I love that I can walk my students out the door for an afternoon lab of mammal trapping or wetland mapping.
Interests & Activities: I am currently collaborating with the Center for Adirondack Biodiversity, housed on the Paul Smith's campus, to conduct research on climate effects on mink frogs in the Adirondack Park. I also continue to collaborate with colleagues from SUNY-ESF and the University of Idaho on computer simulations of population dynamics and natural resource use.
|2007||Ph.D.||University of Missouri||Ecology and Evolutionary Biology|
BIO 210 General Ecology
FWS 101 Introduction to Fisheries and Wildlife Labs
FWS 105 Introduction to Wildlife Management
FWS 470 Wildlife Management
SUS 101 Ecological Foundations of Sustainability
|2012||Patrick, D. A., Harper, E. B., Popescu, D. V., Bozic, Z., Byrne, A., Daub, J., LeCheminant, A., and Pierce|
The ecology of the mink frog, Lithobates septentrionalis, in the Adirondack Park, New York, with notes on conducting experimental research. Herpetological Review 43(3): 396-398.
|2011||Harper, E.B., J. Stella, A. Fremier|
Global sensitivity analysis for complex ecological models: A case study of riparian cottonwood population dynamics. Ecological Applications 21(4): 1225 – 1240.
|2011||Patrick, D.A., Shirk, P., Vonesh, J.R., Harper, E.B., Howell, K.M.|
Abundance and Roosting Ecology of Chameleons in the East Usambara Mountains of Tanzania and the Potential Effects of Harvesting. Herpetological Conservation and Biology 6(3): 422-431.
|2010||Harper, E. B., Measey, G. J., Patrick, D. A., Menegon, M., and Vonesh, J. R.|
Field guide to the amphibians of the Eastern Arc Mountains and Coastal Forests of Tanzania and Kenya. Camerapix Publishers International.
|2009||Harper, E.B., J.H.K Pechmann, and J.W. Petranka|
Field enclosures and terrestrial cages. (pg. 203 – 226) In: C.K. Dodd, Jr. (ed.) Amphibian Ecology and Conservation: A Handbook of Techniques. Oxford University Press.
|2009||Semlitsch, R.D., S.M. Blomquist, A.J.K. Calhoun, J.W. Gibbons, J.P. Gibbs, G.J.Graeter, E.B. Harper, D.J. Hocking, M.L. Hunter, Jr., D.A. Patrick, T.A.G. Rittenhouse, B.B. Rothermel, and B.D. Todd|
Effects of timber management on amphibian populations: Understanding mechanisms from forest experiments. BioScience 59(10):853 - 862.
|2008||Rittenhouse, T. A. G., E. B. Harper, L. R. Rehard, and R. D. Semlitsch|
The role of microhabitats in the desiccation and survival of amphibians in recently harvested oak-hickory forest. Copeia 2008(4):807 - 814.
|2008||Harper, E.B., Rittenhouse, T.A.G., and Semlitsch, R.D. |
Demographic consequences of terrestrial habitat loss for pool-breeding amphibians: predicting extinction risks associated with inadequate buffer zone size. Conservation Biology 22(5):1205 – 1215.
|2008||Patrick, D. A., E. B. Harper, M. L. Hunter, Jr., and A. J. K. Calhoun|
Terrestrial habitat selection and strong density-dependent mortality in recently metamorphosed amphibians. Ecology. 89(8):2563 – 2574
|2008||Hocking, D.J., Rittenhouse, T.A.G., Rothermel, B.B., Johnson, J.R., Conner, C.A., Harper, E.B., Semlitsch, R.D.|
Breeding and recruitment phenology of amphibians in Missouri oak-hickory forests. American Midland Naturalist. 160:41 – 60.
|2008||Semlitsch, R.D., Conner, C.A., Hocking, D.J., Rittenhouse, T.A.G., and Harper, E.B.|
Effects of timber harvesting on pond-breeding amphibian persistence: testing the evacuation hypothesis. Ecological Applications. 18(2):283 – 289.
|2007||Harper, E. B., and R.D. Semlitsch.|
Terrestrial stage density-dependence in the complex life cycle of two anurans. Oecologia. 153: 879 – 889.