Spring Quarter 2017

ECL 290: Recent Advances in Conservation Genetics and Genomics – 69131

Genetic data are increasingly integrated into conservation policy, and novel tools have opened new avenues to ecologists. Genetic tools can be used to manage rare, endangered or exploited species, assess biodiversity, and identify invasive species. What are these tools, and how are they being implemented in a conservation context? This seminar will explore the latest technology in the conservation genetics field including genomic tools, metabarcoding, and environmental DNA (eDNA) monitoring.

ECL 290: Biological Control: Ecology and Applications – 69132

We will read and discuss the soon to be published book (should be available by March 31) on the ecology of biological control, authored by George E. Heimpel and Nicholas J. Mills (Cambridge University Press).  The book discusses biological control and invasion biology; defining successful biological control; negative consequences of biological control; risk assessment; population dynamics; evolution and biological control; augmentative biological control; and conservation biological control (habitat manipulation, and pesticide reduction).

ECL 290: Understanding Stable Isotopes: An Application to Examine Food Webs – 69133

This course discusses approaches and methodologies for applying stable isotopes to examine food web structure and function. After an introduction on stable isotopes and fractionation, classes will likely center around papers that have used stable isotopes to trace food sources, understand temporal and spatial variability in food sources, create food web linkages, and understand biotic/abiotic impacts to food webs in terrestrial, freshwater, and marine systems.

ECL 290: Phylogenies in Ecology: Boon or Pain in the Butt? – 69173

We will examine the nearly-mandatory inclusion of phylogenetic analyses in community-ecology studies today, asking whether referees' insistence on such analyses is justified. How much are they really telling us? Is their popularity really just because they've become relatively cheap and easy to do?

ECL 290: Emerging Issues in Marine Invasion Ecology – 69198

Marine systems experience some of the highest rates and proportions of non-native species across all ecosystems. Coastal habitats have experienced high rates of non-native species introductions through various vectors, including nautical transportation (ballast water and fouling communities), species range shifts, pet trade, and biological control efforts. Coastal habitats, including estuaries, are projected to be substantially affected by climate change, such as rising sea levels, increasing acidity, higher temperatures, lower dissolved oxygen, variable salinity, etc. A synthesis of the impacts of climate change on marine invasions must include an understanding of not simply physiological responses of single species to specific stressors, but also how climate change may influence the broader range of processes, including species interactions (competitive, consumptive, and pathogenic), potential range extensions, changes in source populations from other continents (as compatible zones shift), changing interactions with compaction of tidal zones with sea level rise, alterations of invasive predator-prey dynamics, changes in impacts of invasive pathogens, etc. In this seminar, we will bring together current literature on these topics in addition to other contemporary issues to predict the future of biological invasions in marine systems.

ECL 296: Evolution & Ecology Seminar Series – 69204

This course is comprise of different seminars presented by visiting lecturers, UC Davis faculty, and graduate students, on the topics of Evolution and Ecology. This is a required course for all first year students but is open to outside enrollment as well.

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