Kelly Klingler

Lecturer of Wildlife Conservation

NRC Undergraduate Advisor


Office: Holdsworth 216

Phone: 413-545-4723

Primary Interests 

Kelly’s academic interests are focused on conservation genetics, molecular ecology, as well as non-invasive wildlife monitoring, ecology, and management. As a mentor, educator, and researcher, she hopes to cultivate a classroom culture that enables all students to experience a sense of belonging in the life sciences. In her teaching, Kelly emphasizes an active-learning, team-based approach often facilitated by involvement in Course Undergraduate Research Experiences (CUREs) for research projects at both local and national scales. In addition, she is actively learning how to develop and incorporate contemplative and service-learning pedagogies into her teaching. 

Kelly is currently a faculty fellow in the 2023-2024 Instructional Innovation Fellowship and previously completed the 2021-2022 Community Engagement and Service Learning program. 

Kelly serves as a faculty mentor for the Forsythe-Grange Mentoring program which provides scholarships and individual mentoring for first-generation college students, Pell-eligible, and/or underrepresented students. 

Kelly serves as the Faculty Advisor for the UMass Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society (Email: ; Follow us on Instagram at @umasswildlife.) 

Courses Taught 


NRC 564: Wildlife Habitat Management 


NRC 211: Wildlife Sampling and Identification 

NRC 261: Wildlife Conservation 

NRC 240: Quantitative Ecology  

NRC 567: Vertebrate Ecology 

Research Projects 

Conservation genetics and genomics projects 

  • Population connectivity of the American pika (Ochotona princeps 
  • Population genetics of Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) in the Great Basin. 

Non-invasive Wildlife Population and Ecological Monitoring: 

  • Detection and estimation of wildlife diversity across campus and conservation areas within the town of Amherst through the UMass Amherst Wildlife Camera Trapping Project. This work incorporates student-led data collection and analysis integrated within NRC coursework. 
  • Reducing bird-window collision monitoring on the UMass Amherst campus. This project has been initiated by undergraduate students with daily sampling being conducted by students as part of their coursework or through their affiliation with the student chapter of The Wildlife Society.  
  • Using temperature loggers to characterize the fine-scale microclimates of habitat patches for comparison with patterns of occupancy in the American pika (Ochotona princeps). 

Sustainable EweMass 

  • Bringing together social scientists, natural scientists, humanists, and farmers, Sustainable EweMass is a collaborative, cross-campus, interdisciplinary project using sheep as a touchpoint for thinking about the past, present, and future at UMass Amherst and beyond 
  • This project offers an opportunity for students, faculty, staff, and the broader community to collectively explore the multiple dimensions of land management and animal husbandry, their environmental and social impacts, and issues of social justice, community and access to the natural world 
  • Click here for more info: 

Selected Publications & Professional Reports 

KB Klingler, LB Nichols, E Hekkala, JAE Stewart and MM Peacock. 2023. Life on the edge – a changing genetic landscape within an iconic American pika metapopulation over the last half century. Peer J, doi forthcoming.  

 Beever, E. A., Wilkening, J. L., Billman, P. D., Thurman, L. L., Ernest, K. A., Wright, D. H., …Klingler, KB & Wilson, K. C. 2023. Geographic and taxonomic variation in adaptive capacity among mountain-dwelling small mammals: Implications for conservation status and actions. Biological Conservation, 282, 109942. 

 Borokini, IT, KB Klingler, MM Peacock. 2021. Life in the desert: The impact of geographic and environmental gradients on genetic diversity and population structure of Ivesia webberi. Ecology and Evolution  

 Peacock MM and KB Klingler. 2021. Wild LCT Population Monitoring: Genetic Evaluation of LCT Recovery in the Truckee River, California/Nevada. Final Report to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Region 6, Reno, Nevada, Contract Agreement # F16AC00006 

Dunham-Cheatham SM, KB Klingler, MV Estrada, and MS Gustin. 2021. Using a next-generation sequencing approach to DNA metabarcoding for identification of adulteration and potential sources of mercury in commercial cat and dog foods. Science of the Total Environment. 

Klingler, KB, Parchman T, Ray C, Jahner J and MM Peacock. 2020. Genomic variation in the American pika: signatures of geographic isolation and implications for conservation. BMC Evolutionary Biology. 

Westover, ML, K Lizewski, KB Klingler, and F Smith. 2020. Isotopic niche of the American pika (Ochotona princeps) through space and time. Canadian J of Zoology. 

Dunham-Cheatham, SM, KB Klingler, MM Peacock, M Teglas, and MS Gustin. 2019. What is in commercial cat and dog food? The case for mercury and ingredient testing. Science of the Total Environment. 

Nichols, LB, KB Klingler, and MM Peacock. 2016. American pikas extirpated from Masonic Mining District. Western North American Naturalist. 

Wilkening, JL, C Ray, N Ramsay, and K Klingler. 2015. Alpine biodiversity and assisted migration: The case of the American pika (Ochotona princeps). Biodiversity Conservancy International.