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I'm proud to say that the first paper of my dissertation has been published in Ecology Letters! We showed that changes in elk density alter habitat selection (density-dependent habitat selection), changing the balance of the food-safety tradeoff and resulting in redistribution of the population. You can read it (Open Access) here!

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Brian J. Smith with Racer


Welcome! Thank you for your interest in my work.

I am a PhD candidate studying Ecology in the Department of Wildland Resources at Utah State University. I am co-advised by Drs. Dan MacNulty and Tal Avgar, and I am a part of USU's Ecology Center.


My dissertation research focuses on tying animal movements and space use to population demography. I work on elk in the Northern Range of Yellowstone National Park, and I'm interested in how the pressures of density-dependence and predation risk influence elk behavior, and how those responses, in turn, affect elk survival and reproduction.

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