Dr. Diana Lafferty, NMU-Biology / Wildlife Ecology & Conservation Science Lab
Mismatch in seasonal coat color provides a striking visual metaphor for how climate change may affect Earth’s biodiversity. As such, snowshoe hare serve as an exciting ecological model for investigating the genetic basis for seasonal coat color change and for examining the morphological, physiological, and behavioral responses of a seasonal coat color changing species to ongoing climate change.
More about Dr. Lafferty:
As the director of the Wildlife Ecology and Conservation Science (WECOS) Lab at Northern Michigan University, Dr. Lafferty synergizes her research, mentoring, teaching and extension efforts to maximize participation by diverse people in authentic science to advance our understanding of how wildlife populations–and their associated communities and ecosystems–respond to human-mediated global change. In this pursuit, Dr. Lafferty’s research is taxonomically (American black bear, brown bear, Japanese wild boar, snowshoe hare) and geographically (Alaska, Michigan, North Carolina, Japan) diverse. In addition, she often integrates macro and micro-ecological perspectives using a mix of natural history observations, field-based monitoring, myriad laboratory techniques, statistical modeling and bioinformatics analyses to answer ecological questions for the purpose of contributing to meaningful conservation outcomes.