Science and Engineering 601,
Fayetteville, AR 72701
Office: SCEN 630
Phone: (479) 575-2647
FAX: (479) 575-4010
Ph.D. University of Georgia, 2009
Research in my lab focuses on understanding factors that drive population and community dynamics of reptiles and amphibians including inter- and intra-specific interactions, environmental variation, and anthropogenic impacts such as habitat alteration, pollution, and invasive species. Our work uses a combination of observational, experimental, and theoretical approaches to integrate responses from the level of the individual organism to the landscape. Although much of our work is applied, we are also shedding light many basic questions in ecology. We are especially interested in understanding how unique aspects of reptile and amphibian population biology that differentiate them from other vertebrates. Current projects under investigation in the Willson Lab include:
1) Evaluating population-level effects of anthropogenic stressors (pollution, habitat alteration, climate change) on pond-breeding and stream-dwelling amphibians.
2) Understanding the ecology, impacts, and management of Burmese pythons and other invasive snakes
3) Assessing the relative importance of abiotic (environmental stochasticity) and biotic (predator-prey interactions, intra-and interspecific competition) drivers of amphibian and aquatic snake population and community dynamics within isolated wetland ecosystems
Population, Community, and Landscape Ecology; Conservation Biology; Invasive Species Ecology; Herpetology
Lab Website:Click here to go to Dr. Willson's website.
Willson, J. D., W. A. Hopkins, C. M. Bergeron, and B. D. Todd. In press. Making leaps in amphibian ecotoxicology: Translating individual-level effects of environmental contaminants to population viability. Ecological Applications.
Dorcas, M.E., J.D. Willson, R.N. Reed, R.W. Snow, M.R. Rochford, M.A. Miller, W.E. Meshaka, Jr., P.T. Andreadis, F.J. Mazzotti, C.M. Romagosa, and K.M. Hart. 2012. Severe mammal declines coincide with python proliferation in Everglades National Park. PNAS 109:2418-2422.
Willson, J.D. and W. A. Hopkins. 2011. Prey morphology constrains the feeding ecology of an aquatic generalist predator. Ecology 92:744-754.
Willson, J. D., C. T. Winne, and B. T. Todd. 2011. Ecological and methodological factors affecting detectability and population estimation in elusive species. Journal of Wildlife Management 75:36-45.
Dorcas, M. E. and J.D. Willson. 2011. Invasive Pythons in the United States: Ecology of an Introduced Predator. University of Georgia Press.