Our research group thinks about applied questions related to the distributions of animals, the composition of animal communities, and how animals are responding to global change, such as the introduction of invasive species and rising sea levels.
The lab is led by Paul Taillie, who recently joined the faculty in the UNC-Chapel Hill Department of Geography and the Environment in July 2022 as an assistant professor. Thus, the "lab" is very new and very small (its just me so far). But please get in touch if you're interested in joining the lab as an undergraduate, grad student, or postdoc.
My research and teaching broadly aim to address the implications of global change for biodiversity conservation. As a problem solver, I'm especially excited by applied questions that address real-world problems. Previously, this work has spanned a variety of spatial scales, focal systems, and taxa, including mountains, coasts, forests, wetlands, fire, hurricanes, birds, bats, voles, and rats. Most recently, I'm really excited about coasts and islands because of the unique animals they support, but also because of their vulnerability to rising sea levels. Methodologically, I try to harness the benefits of well-designed field studies, rigorous analytical tools and data science principles, emerging technologies for monitoring elusive wildlife (e.g. camera traps), and remotely-sensed earth observation data (e.g., satellite imagery).
If any of these topics are interesting, get in touch!
In The News!
Paul chatted with WCHL about how coastal wildlife are responding to climate change and the importance of coastal wetlands.
Paul's research from his postdoc was featured in Wired Magazine Link
In our latest study from the Flordia Keys, we document in unprecedental detail how species are shifting upslope in response to rising sea level. Using radiotelemetry to track an endangered rodent through swamps at night, we compared the elevational range of this species between 2004 and 2021. While many recent studies are documenting these types of shifts for plants, it has proved much more difficult for animals. Our results provide some of the first concrete examples of how animals are shifting upslope, and what that means for their conservation.
Here's a quick video of an engangered silver rice rat being released into a dwarf mangrove swamp in the Florida Keys after being captured and fitted with a telemetry collar.