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Warren, Paige S.

Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin
Associate Professor
Email: pswarren

Lab website:

Other links:;;;


Primary Interests:

Dr. Warren’s research seeks to understand processes generating and maintaining biological diversity in a world that is becoming increasingly dominated by humans. Research in the lab spans the species, community and landscape levels and focuses on the impacts of urbanization on animals. Rapid urbanization is one of the greatest challenges facing conservation biology, with many cities growing in area faster than in population. In addition, the highly managed nature of a city landscape provides biologists with some unique opportunities to understand both the role of humans in altering patterns of biological diversity and the role of behavior in limiting animal distributions. A guiding principle for Dr. Warren’s research is that the typical indices of urbanization, such as human population density, describe only a portion of the habitat structure that is important for wildlife. Human behaviors, values, and resource consumption levels can influence the habitat and resource availability for birds and other organisms.

Current & Recent Projects:

  • Comparative ecology of cities – what makes an urban biota “urban”? (NSF Research Coordination Network)
  • Socioeconomic status and biotic community composition in residential areas of Phoenix, AZ and Baltimore, MD (Central Arizona Phoenix LTER and Baltimore Ecosystem Study LTER)
  • Untangling interactions among bottom up and top down processes in novel and invaded forest ecosystems (with D. King)
  • Socio-ecological consequences of of urban greening and urban growth in the Boston Metropolitan Area (BMA ULTRA-Ex)
  • Linking urban development and species interactions: implications for the evolution of native species in urban environments (with L. Adler and R. Irwin)
  • Dead and decaying wood as a limiting resource for cavity nesting birds, measuring the impact of arboricultural practices (with B. Kane)


Courses taught:

ECO 622 – Urban Ecology & Evolution (3cr) – Spring in even years

Rapid urbanization is transforming landscapes around the world. This creates an urgent need both for wildlife conservation in cities and for science that addresses the ecology of places where people live. This course surveys current topics in urban wildlife ecology, such as altered biotic community structure, invasive species, altered trophic dynamics, urban evolutionary biology, and urban ecological theories. Other issues and topics are determined by the student composition of the course. Although this is a graduate course, interested undergraduates are encouraged to contact me for more information.

NRC 564 Wildlife Habitat Management (4cr) – Fall
Wildlife-habitat relationships illustrated through basic field zoology and natural history, evolutionary biology, ecological theory, and quantitative tools used to explain ecological processes and their influence on wildlife and their environment. Explores the dynamics and management of various habitats in North America and elsewhere. Topics include wildlife ecology, habitat classification, resource utilization, effects of humans, and management techniques. Prerequisite: NRC 261.

ECO 622 Conservation Biology (3cr) – Spring in odd years


Recent Publications:

Strohbach, M., S. B. Lerman, and P. S. Warren (2013) Are small greening areas enhancing bird diversity? Insights from community-driven greening projects in Boston. Landscape and Urban Planning, pp. 69-79.

Lerman, S.B., P. S. Warren, H. Gan, and E. Shochat (2012) Linking foraging decisions to residential yard bird composition. PlosOne 7(8): e43497

Lepczyk, C. A., P. S. Warren, L. Machabée, A. P. Kinzig, A. Mertig. (2012) Who feeds the birds? A comparison between Phoenix, Arizona and Southeastern Michigan. Studies in Avian Biology, edited series from Cooper Ornithological Society. Series editor: Brett Sandercock. Assoc. Editors for Urban Bird Ecology and Conservation: C. Lepczyk and P. Warren.

Pickett, S.T.A., G.S. Brush, A.J. Felson, B.P. McGrath, J.M. Grove, C.H. Nilon, K. Szlavecz, C.S. Swan, P.S. Warren (2012) The Baltimore Ecosystem Study: Understanding and Working with Urban Biodiversity.  Citygreen.  Issue 4: 68-77.

Warren, P. S., R. L. Ryan, S. B. Lerman, K. Tooke. (2011) Social and institutional factors associated with land use and forest conservation along two urban gradients in Massachusetts. Landscape and Urban Planning 102:82-92.

Lerman S. B. and P. S. Warren (2011) The conservation value of residential yards: Linking birds and people. Ecological Applications 21(4):1327-1339.

Pickett, S.T.A., M.L. Cadenasso, J.M. Grove, C.G. Boone, E. Irwin, P. M. Groffman, S.S. Kaushal, V. Marshall, B.P. McGrath, C.H. Nilon, R.V. Pouyat, K. Szlavecz, A. Troy, and P. Warren.  (2011) Urban ecological systems: Foundations and a decade of progress.  Journal of Environmental Management 92:331-362.

Mayer, P.M., N. Grimm, C. Lepczyk, S. Pickett, R. Pouyat, P. Warren (2010) Urban ecology is already on the research agenda. Nature 467(153).

Shochat, E., S. B. Lerman, J. M. Anderies, P. S. Warren, S. H. Faeth, and C. H. Nilon. (2010) Invasion, competition, and biodiversity loss in urban ecosystems. BioScience 60(3):199-208.



Lepczyk, C. and P. Warren (2012) Urban Bird Ecology and Conservation. University of California Press.


Book chapters and reports

Swan, C.M., S.T.A. Pickett, K. Szlavecz, P. Warren, K.T. Willey. (2011) Biodiversity and community composition in urban ecosystems: coupled human, spatial and metacommunity processes. In Handbook of Urban Ecology by Jari Niemela (ed) Oxford University Press.

Slavecz, K., P. S. Warren, S. T. A. Pickett. (2011) Biodiversity on the Urban Landscape (pp75-101) in Human Population: Its Influences on Biological Diversity, Ecological Studies 214. by R.P. Cincotta, L. Gorenflo and D. Mageean (eds) Springer. Heidelberg, Germany.

Warren, P. S., S. Harlan, C. Boone, S. B. Lerman, E. Shochat, A. P. Kinzig. (2010) Urban ecology and human social organization. Pages 172-201 in Urban Ecology by K. Gaston (ed) Ecological Reviews series Cambridge University Press, Berkeley, CA.

Fuller, T., S. DeStefano, and P. Warren. (2010) Carnivore behavior and ecology, and relationship to urbanization. Pages 13-19 in Urban Carnivores: Ecology, Conflict, and Conservation by S.D. Gehrt, S.P.D. Riley, and B.L. Cypher (eds). Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Maryland.

Page updated: November 17, 2016