OEB brings together more than 75 faculty, providing critical mass needed for effective graduate training. Our faculty are drawn from 10 departments at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and from across the Five College System (Amherst, Hampshire, Mt. Holyoke, and Smith Colleges), as well as from off-campus institutions. OEB faculty are engaged in cutting edge research, with research clusters in four broad areas:

Animal Behavior

Behavioral ecology, communication, learning


Community ecology, population ecology, landscape ecology, conservation biology

Evolutionary Biology

Evolution, phylogenetics, population genetics, molecular evolution

Organismal Biology

Physiology, morphology, paleontology

All OEB faculty are listed below. To help applicants to our graduate program locate a faculty sponsor, the faculty list can be filtered by four broad research areas.  A list of faculty who are activiely seeking graduate students can be found HERE

Name Research Interests
Lynn Adler

Professor, Biology

Ecology and evolution of insect-plant interactions

Jesse Bellemare

Associate Professor of Biological Sciences, Smith College

Plant ecology, biogeography and evolution

Jeffrey L. Blanchard

Associate Professor, Department of Biology

Microbial cellular and community networks; influence of environmental change on the evolution of molecular processes; systems biology; bioinformatics

Bethany A. Bradley

Associate Professor of Environmental Conservation

Biogeography and spatial ecology of terrestrial plant invasions

Jill L. Bubier

Professor Emeritus of Environmental Science, Mount Holyoke College

Carbon cycling in northern wetlands

John P. Buonaccorsi

Professor Emeritus of Mathematics and Statistics

Statistical theory, methods and applcations, Quantitative ecology

Theodore Castro–Santos

Adjunct Assistant Professor of Biology

Biomechanics and Behavior of Migratory Fishes; Bioengineering of Fish Passage Structures

Brian S. Cheng

Assistant Professor, Environmental Conservation

Marine global change ecology and the dynamics of predator-prey interactions

Daniel R. Cooley

Professor of Plant Pathology, Stockbridge School of Agriculture

Epidemiology, ecology and sustainable management of plant diseases

Cristina Cox Fernandes

Adjunct Research Associate Professor and Curator of Fishes, Department of Biology

Ecology and evolutionary diversity of neotropical freshwater fishes, particularly within the Amazon River

Andy J. Danylchuk

Associate Professor of Environmental Conservation

Fish conservation, recreational fisheries, sustainable aquaculture

Kristen M DeAngelis

Associate Professor, Department of Microbiology

Community ecology and physiology of soil microbes, climate change, plant-soil interactions

Stephen DeStefano

Research Professor of Environmental Conservation

USGS Massachusetts Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Leader

Urban and suburban wildlife, forest wildlife, and human-wildlife interactions

Graziella V. DiRenzo

Adjunct Assistant Professor

Department of Environmental Conservation

Assistant Unit Leader of Wildlife

U. S. Geological Survey

MA Cooperative Research Unit

Quantitative ecology, population dynamics, applied ecology

Joseph S. Elkinton

Professor of Environmental Conservation

Population dynamics and biological control of invasive forest insects

John Finn

Professor of Environmental Conservation

Network Analysis of Acoustic Telemetry

Alexander R. Gerson

Assistant Professor, Biology

Integrative ecological physiology of birds, energetics, water balance, bird migration

Barry Goodell

Research Professor, Department of Microbiology

Fungal biochemical mechanisms involved in human disease, and also involved in the degradation of lignocellulose biomass and xenobiotics

Evan Grant

Adjunct Assistant Professor of Environmental Conservation

Research Wildlife Biologist, Conte Anadromous Fish Lab

Ecology and management of amphibian populations and habitat

Curtice R. Griffin

Professor and Department Head of Environmental Conservation

Wildlife ecology and conservation

Rachel Hestrin

Assistant Professor, Stockbridge School of Agriculture

Plant-microbe interactions, biogeochemistry, ecosystem response to change, sustainable agriculture

Martha Hoopes

Professor, Biological Sciences, Mount Holyoke College

Spread dynamics, impacts, and lag times in invasion ecology, as well as metacommunity dynamics, particularly for plants and herbivores.

Peter W. Houlihan

Senior Lecturer in Biology

Animal Behavior, Vertebrate Ecology, and Conservation Biology

Adrian Jordaan

Associate Professor, Environmental Conservation

Ecosystems, modeling, tagging, movement, trophic dynamics, diadromous, marine,
fisheries, historical ecology

Jason M. Kamilar

Associate Professor of Anthropology

Comparative biology of primates and other mammals

David King

Adjunct Research Associate Professor, Environmental Conservation

Research Wildlife Biologist USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station, Amherst

Wildlife ecology and conservation

Lisa Komoroske

Assistant Professor, Environmental Conservation

Conservation genomics and ecophysiology in marine and freshwater ecosystems

Michael L. Lavine

Emeritus Professor, Mathematics and Statistics

Statistical Theory and Methods

Susannah B. Lerman

Adjunct Research Professor, Dept. of Environmental Conservation

Urban and suburban ecology, wildlife conservation, and citizen science

Benjamin Letcher

Adjunct Associate Professor of Environmental Conservation

Section Leader, Conte Anadromous Fish Research Center

Population ecology of stream fishes

Rachel A. Levin

Senior Lecturer, Department of Biology, Amherst College

Plant systematics, biogeography and ecology

Meghan Graham MacLean

Lecturer of Quantitative Ecology, Department of Environmental Conservation

Aboveground carbon consequences of future land use in New England, Carbon accounting of timber from current harvest trends in Massachusetts, Modeling direct and indirect impacts of forest insects and pathogens, and Inclusive pedagogy in quantitative undergraduate biology

Kevin McGarigal

Professor of Environmental Conservation

Landscape ecology, ecosystem management, wildlife ecology

Jill Miller

Professor of Biology, Amherst College

Ecology and evolution of plant reproductive systems, molecular phylogenetic systematics, population and evolutionary genetics, hybridization and speciation

Toni Lyn Morelli

Research Ecologist, Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center; Adjunct Assistant Professor, Dept. of Environmental Conservation

Climate change ecology, montane and boreal wildlife, and decision analysis and translational ecology for climate adaptation  

Keith H. Nislow

Adjunct Associate Professor of Environmental Conservation

Research Fishery Biologist, USDA Forest Service

Ecology and conservation biology of stream fishes and invertebrates

Klaus Nüsslein

Professsor of Microbiology

Microbial ecology of terrestrial and aquatic environments

Adam H. Porter

Associate Professor of Biology

Admissions Committee Chair, OEB

Evolutionary biology; hybridization, introgression & speciation; ecological genetics; evolution of regulatory genetic pathways; computer and mathematical modeling; invasion and range expansion; insects, especially butterflies and moths

Charles Ross

Associate Professor of Evolutionary Biology, Hampshire College

Ecological and evolutionary genetics of hybrid zones and speciation

Allison H. Roy

Research Associate Professor of Environmental Conservation

Freshwater ecology, fish and macroinvertebrates, urban ecology, conservation

Tristram Seidler

Extension Assistant Professor, Biology

Plant ecology, plant diversity, invasive plants, climate change

David A. Sela

Associate Professor, Department of Food Science

Nutrition, human milk, gut microbiome, systems biology, host-microbe interactions/co-evolution, translational research

Paul R Sievert

Research Associate Professor of Environmental Conservation

Conservation biology, physiological ecology and biostatistics

L. David Smith

Professor of Biological Sciences, Smith College

Director of the Environmental Science and Policy Program

Ecology and evolution of marine predator-prey interactions

Michelle Staudinger

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Environmental Conservation

Science Coordinator, DOI Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center

Climate change impacts on coastal biodiversity and trophic relationships

Kristina Stinson

Associate Professor, Environmental Conservation

Plant Ecology, Invasive Plants, Biological Responses to Global Change

Chris Sutherland

Assistant Professor, Environmental Conservation

Population, spatial, statistical and applied ecology

Ethan J. Temeles

Professor of Biology, Amherst College

Foraging behavior; Territoriality; Intra- and Interspecific competition; Resource partitioning; Mutualism; Coevolution;
Sexual dimorphisms and polymorphisms

Paige S. Warren

Professor of Environmental Conservation

Urban ecology, human-environment interactions, animal behavior

Tammy L. Wilson

Research Assistant Professor, Department of Environmental Conservation

USGS Massachusetts Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Assistant Unit Leader

Landscape ecology, spatial ecology, wildlife conservation and management, structured decision-making