Lab website: blogs.umass.edu/warrenecologylab
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)
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
Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin
Kane, B.C.P., P.S. Warren, and S.B. Lerman (2015). Tree risk assessment and the occurrence of cavity-nesting birds in residential landscapes. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening 14: 1137-1146.
Schmidt, P., S. Caspers, P. Warren, and K. Witte (in press). First steps into the wild – Exploration behavior of European bison after the first reintroduction in Western Europe. PlosOne.
Cheng, C., R. Ryan, P.S. Warren, and C. Nicolson (accepted, pending revision). Visualization and scenario planning: Working with stakeholders to achieve the multiple benefits of sustainability. Landscape and Urban Planning (special issue).
Rega, C., C. Nilon, and P.S. Warren (2015). Avian abundance patterns in relation to the distribution of small urban greenspaces. Journal of Urban Planning and Development (Special issue on Green Infrastructure), (10.1061/(ASCE)UP.1943-5444.0000279), A4015002.
Strohbach, M. W., A. Hrycyna†, and P. Warren (2014). 150 years of changes in bird life in Cambridge, Massachusetts from 1860 to 2012. Wilson Journal of Ornithology 126:192–206.
Ryan, R.L., P. S. Warren, C. Nicolson, C. Cheng, R. Danford and M. Strohbach (2014). Scenario Planning for the Boston Metropolitan Region: Exploring Environmental and Social Implications of Alternative Futures. Landscape Architecture China (http://www.la-bly.com/news/show_news.aspx?news_id=163).
Aronson, M., F. La Sorte, C. Nilon, M. Katti, M. Goddard, C. Lepczyk, P. Warren, N. Williams, S. Cilliers, B. Clarkson, C. Dobbs, M. Heblom, J. Louwe Koojimans, I. MacGregor-Fors, U. Mortberg, S. Siebert, P. Werner, I. Kuehn, M. McDonnell, and J. Sushinsky (2014). A global analysis of the impacts of urbanization on bird and plant diversity reveals key anthropogenic drivers. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 281:20133330. (http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2013.3330).
Irwin, R.E., P.S. Warren, A.L. Carper, and L.S. Adler (2014). Natural selection in urban environments: the role of plant-animal interactions. Oecologia 174:803–815.
Carper, A., L. Adler, P. Warren, and R. Irwin (2014). Effects of suburbanization on forest bee communities. Environmental Entomology 43(2): 253-262.
Danford, R.S., C. Cheng, M. Strohbach, R. Ryan, C. Nicolson, and P. Warren (2014). What Does It Take to Achieve Equitable Urban Tree Canopy Distribution? A Boston Case Study. Cities and the Environment 7(1):Article 2. (http://digitalcommons.lmu.edu/cate/vol7/iss1/2).
Lepczyk, C. and P. Warren (2012) Urban Bird Ecology and Conservation. University of California Press.
Book chapters and reports
Arnold, E., M.W. Strohbach, and P.S. Warren (2014). Allergenic potential of street trees in Boston, Massachusetts. Pp. 115–141 in Human-Environmental Interactions in Cities – Challenges and Opportunities of Urban Land Use Planning and Green Infrastructure by N. Kabisch, N. Larondelle, A. Reeve, M. Artmann (eds.) Cambridge Scholars.
Strohbach, M.W., Peterson, Nils, and P.S. Warren (2014). Urban Wildlife Science in Coupled Human-Natural Systems in Urban Wildlife Science: Theory and Practice by R. McCleery, C. Moorman, and N. Peterson (eds.) Springer, pp.33-53.
Shanahan, D.F., M.W. Strohbach, P.S. Warren, and R.A. Fuller (2014). Living in urban environments: Novel responses to novel challenges in Avian Urban Ecology by D. Gil and H. Brumm (eds.) Oxford University Press.
Public Outreach Publications
Kane, B., P. Warren, S. Lerman (2016). Risk Trees and Cavity-Nesting Birds. Arborist News April Issue (pp.24-25).
M. Strohbach, P. Warren, and A. Hrycyna (2014). “Saturday, April 28th, 1866: Saw the first chimney swallow today” 150 years of bird observation in western Cambridge. Bird Observer 42(4):202-2013.