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Lab PI

Jake Ferguson (Hufflepuff)

headshot I enjoy both developing ecology theory, using models to solve management and conservation problems, and getting out in the field to explore nature. I am especially keen on understanding how animal populations experience and handle uncertainty in their environment. One of the joys of doing quantitative ecology is that I’ve been fortunate to work on a wide range of problems and systems. My favorite part of the job is working with students and helping them achieve their academic and professional goals.

Data scientist

Pamela Rueda‐Cediel is working on characterizing the properties of animal population dynamics.

Postdoc researcher

Franz Simon is the properties of complex dynamical systems subjected to variability in their environment.

Graduate students

Erin Salano (Ravenclaw)

headshot Erin obtained her BS in wildlife conservation and management from the University of Arizona, which is an hour and a half from Phoenix, the city where she was born and raised. Erin spent almost 3 years working in AZA accredited zoological facilities and in animal shelters, her time there is what ultimately led her to make the leap into Grad school. Taking the knowledge and experience she acquired in animal welfare and through her education, Erin decided she wanted to explore the effect feral cats have on native Hawaiian fauna by conducting stable isotope analysis. It is crucial to her that she incorporate the practice and idea of decolonizing conservation biology in her research by being concious respectful of the ‘aina, Kanaka, and the culture/traditions of Hawai’i. Currently, her plans are to finish grad school and pursue employment through a government agency such as the USFWS.

On her free time Erin partakes in equestrian sports and Mexican folkloric dance. She also enjoys listening to music, cooking, spending time with her dog, shopping, and chatting with her family back home.

Tania Rojas (Ravenclaw)

headshot Tania obtained her BS in Civil Engineering from the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru and her MS in Environmental Science & Policy from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Wisconsin. In the last 5 years, she has worked as a consultant on projects to characterize the river geomorphology and ecosystem services in Amazonian and coastal wetlands in Peru, to develop protocols to monitor water quality and quantity in the Amazon basin, and to synthesize biodiversity data for conservation portfolios. She has also participated in the implementation of participatory monitoring and citizen science in these regions in collaboration with several organizations, such as The Nature Conservancy and Wildlife Conservation Society. Her research focuses on ecosystem assessment, quantitative ecology, and eco-geomorphology to explain relationships between ecosystem functionality and landscape dynamics. She has experience working with GIS-based tools to characterize landscape ecology and using stable isotopes to describe food webs in aquatic systems. Currently, she decided to explore theoretical models and advanced quantitative techniques to understand species interactions and community composition, including the environmental mechanisms that drive them. Her future plans include working on the formulation of programs and initiatives that reinforce science as foundational to decision-making to help preserve the integrity and functionality of ecosystems. In her spare time, Tania enjoys doing yoga, reading, and painting in watercolor. Her art covers botanical, animal, and food subjects.

Past lab members

Laura Jiménez was a postdoc working on the design of optimal surveys based on optimal foraging principles and on applied statistical modeling of Hawai’i fisheries data with the HIMARC project.

Aubtin Rouhbakhs (Gryffindor) was an MSc student at UH Manoa working on the group size dynamics of foragers.