Smith Fellows
Smith Fellow


Due to the combined threats from an invasive pathogen, mountain pine beetle, and climate change, whitebark pine is currently being assessed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service for listing under the Endangered Species Act. I aim to expand on this ground-breaking effort by applying cutting-edge science to measure and predict the current and future threats to whitebark in the Sierra Nevada. Specifically, I will 1) develop predictive models to predict possible distribution shifts with climate change, 2) determine whether the Southern Sierra will remain the only known refugium for whitebark. Working in collaboration with conservation practitioners and scientists from the University of California, US Forest Service (USFS), the National Parks Service (NPS), and the US Geological Survey (USGS) will ensure that this research will inform science-based management of this keystone species.

Follow Joan on Twitter: @dudney_joan