High Tech with a Human Touch
PRUETT, Christin L
Biological Sciences Department, College of Science
B.S. Southwest Baptist University 1991
M.S. Texas A&M University-Kingsville 1998
Ph.D. University of Alaska Fairbanks 2002
Assistant Professor, Florida Institute of Technology, 2008-present
Research Associate, University of Alaska Museum, 2004-present
Postdoc, Sutton Research Center, Univ. Oklahoma, 2006-2008
Postdoc, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, 2004-2006
Postdoc, Texas A&M University, 2002-2004
I have three primary areas of research:
1. Song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) as a model in evolutionary ecology and conservation biology. Song sparrows are one of the most geographically variable birds in North America with numerous subspecies described. Birds found along the coast of Alaska show amazing variability in body size. I am working with researchers at the University of British Columbia, University of Oklahoma, University of Georgia, and University of Alaska Museum studying the genetics and ecology of these populations to understand the evolution of island gigantism.
2. The effects of glaciations on high-latitude biodiversity. There is a surprising amount of intraspecific variation in birds found in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska and the neighboring Commander Islands of Russia. I am working with collaborators in Russia and Alaska examining the population genetics of landbirds found throughout these islands. We have found signals in the genetic data that support the existence of glacial refugia in these areas.
3. How grassland birds are impacted by climate change and habitat fragmentation. Prairie-chickens (Tympanuchus) and other grassland birds are of conservation concern throughout the Great Plains of North America primarily due to habitat fragmentation. Understanding the possible negative effects of wind energy development and climate change on the persistence of populations is of primary importance in the conservation of prairie birds. I am working in association with researchers at the University of Oklahoma and the Sutton Avian Research Center on these studies.
Pruett, C. L., J. A. Johnson, L. C. Larsson, D. H. Wolfe, and M. A. Patten. 2011. Low effective population size and survivorship in a grassland grouse. Conservation Genetics 12: 1205-1214.
Pruett, C. L., S. M. Tanksley, M. F. Small, J. F. Taylor, and M. R. J. Forstner. 2011. The effects of range expansion on the population genetics of white-winged doves in Texas. American Midland Naturalist 166: 415-425.
Pruett, C. L., T. N. Turner*, C. M. Topp, S. V. Zagrebelny, and K. Winker. 2010. Divergence in an archipelago and its conservation consequences in Aleutian Island rock ptarmigan. Conservation Genetics 11:241-248.
Pruett, C. L., M. A. Patten, and D. H. Wolfe. 2009. Avoidance behavior by prairie grouse: implications for wind energy development. Conservation Biology 23:1253-1259.
Pruett, C. L., M. A. Patten, and D. H. Wolfe. 2009. Its not easy being green: Wind energy and a declining grassland bird. BioScience 59:257-262.
Patten, M. A., and C. L. Pruett. 2009. The Song Sparrow, Melospiza melodia, as a ring species: patterns of geographic variation, a revision of subspecies, and implications for speciation. Systematics and Biodiversity 7:33-62
Pruett, C. L., P. Arcese, Y. Chan, A. Wilson, M. A. Patten, L. F. Keller, and K. Winker. 2008. The effects of contemporary processes in maintaining the genetic structure of western song sparrows (Melospiza melodia). Heredity 101: 67-84.
Pruett, C. L., P. Arcese, Y. Chan, A. Wilson, M. A. Patten, L. F. Keller, and K. Winker. 2008. Concordant and discordant signals between genetic data and described subspecies of Pacific coast song sparrows. Condor 110:359-364.
Pruett, C. L., and K. Winker. 2008. The effects of sample size on population genetic diversity estimates in song sparrows. Journal of Avian Biology 39:252-256.
Pruett, C. L. and K. Winker. 2008. Evidence for cryptic northern refugia among high- and temperate-latitude species in Beringia A response to Stewart and Dalen (2008). Climatic Change 38: 23-27.
Pruett, C. L., and K. Winker. 2005. Northwestern song sparrow populations show genetic effects of sequential colonization. Molecular Ecology 14: 1421-1434.
Pruett, C. L., and K. Winker. 2005. Biological impacts of climatic change on a Beringian endemic: Cryptic refugia in the establishment and differentiation of the rock sandpiper (Calidris ptilocnemis). Climatic Change 68: 219-240.
*undergraduate student at Florida Tech.