Postdoctoral Researchers

  • Maria Rosa Darrigo: Rosinha came to UF with a Science Without Borders Postdoctoral Fellowship. Her research focused on how vairation in avian dispersal ability influenced H. acuminata demography in fragmented landscapes.
  • Paul Gagnon: Paul did research on the demography of plants in fragmented landscapes. He is now a faculty member in the Department of Biology at Murray State University (website).
  • Heather Passmore: Heather was a postdoc investigating the effect of forest fragmentation in central Amazonia on the structure of ant-plant mutualist networks. She is currently a consultant.
  • Thiago Izzo: worked with us on the ecology of ant-plant mutualisms. He is now a Professor at the Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso (Brazil).

Graduate Students

  • Ernane Vieira Neto, Ph.D. in WEC. Ernane completed his BS and MS degrees at the Universidade Federal de Uberlandia. His PhD was on factors influencing the demography and dynamics of leaf-cutter ants (Atta).
  • Fabiane Mundim, Ph.D. WEC. Fabiane completed her Master’s thesis at the Universidade Federal de Uberlandia, where she studied the consequences of hervbivory by leaf-cutter ants for Cerrado tree phenology and reproduction.
  • Ana Cecilia Silva. M.A. Student in Latin American Studies.  Ana Cecilia completed her BA in Anthropology at the University of Florida with a minor in German. He MA thesis was on how Brazilian’s attitudes regarding extensive executive power influence support for affirmative action,
  • Paulo Rubim, Ph.D.  UFSCar-Brazil ( Paulo completed his BS and MSc at UNESP where he studied the phenology of Atlantic forest tree species. His Ph.D. was on factors influencing Heliconia acuminata distribution and reproduction at multiple spatial scales.
  • Cris Follman Jurinitz, Ph.D. in Ecology Universidade de São Paulo (2012). Cris studied tree demography in primary and regenerating Atlantic rain forests. I co-advised Cris with Alexandre Oliveira
  • Christine Lucas, Ph.D. in WEC (2010) (website). Christine did her research on how flooding and disturbance from cattle ranching influence the regeneration of Varzea forests in the Brazilian Amazon. She is currentlya postdoc in Uruguay
  • Stella Copeland, M.S. in WEC (2009). Stella’s thesis was on how nitrogen enrichment and simulated changes in precipitation influenced two Cerrado grasses. Current Position: Postdoc, Susan Harrison’s Lab at UC Davis (website).
  • Gwen Iacona, M.S. in WEC (2008). MS Thesis Research: Seedling establishment along productivity gradients in Longleaf pine savannas. Current position: PhD Student, University of Tennessee.
  • Alana Vaz Ferreira, M.S. in Biology, U. Federal de Uberlandia (2007). MS Thesis research: Seed predation by ants, birds, and rodents in Brazil’s Cerrado. Current Position: State Police, Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • Ian Fiske, M.S. in WEC (2006). MS Thesis Research: Sampling in plant demographic studies and implications for matrix model projections. Current position: Resource Modeling Analyst for Nextera Energy Resources in Juno Beach, FL
  • Matt Trager, M.S. in SNRE (2006). MS Thesis research: Effects of nutrient manipulation on ant-plant mutualisms. Current position: US Forest Service .
  • Maria Beatriz Nogueira Ribeiro, M.S. in Ecology, USP (2005). MS Thesis Research: Plant regeneration in Amazonian secondary forests.
  • Antônio Aguiar Neto, Ph.D. in WEC [on leave].  Antônio earned his BS and MS degrees at Brazil’s Universidade Federal de Pernambuco. He is interested in the population dynamics of trees in the Atlantic rain forests of Brazil’s northeast.

Technicians & Field Assistants

  • Emilia Zoppas de Albuquerque. Ant-Plant Project, Manaus. Emilia joined us after completing her BS and MS at UNISINOS. She is studying how herbivory influences the mutualist ant colony structure abd preparing for her PhD at USP.
  • Tyler Webner & Shannon Moore, SSTP Program. Tyler and Shannon spent a summer in the lab as part of UF’s SSTP Program for outstanding high school students interested in research careers. They studied (1) how edge effects influence the growth and reproduction of tropical plants and (2) a study of ecosystem bia in the tropical research. They also became experts in international soccer since their tenure overlapped with the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
  • Irina Skinner, BS in WEC (2009). Irina was a CALS University Scholar in our lab. Her sentior thesis was on the effect of nutrient enrichment on wiregrass, with field work conducted at the Ordway-Swisher Biological Station. Find out more about Irina at her website.
  • David M. Lapola, BDFFP Intern (2001). Current position: following an MS at INPE and a PhD student at the Max-Planck Institut, Lapola is now a faculty member at UNESP.
  • Olavo Nardy, BDFFP Intern & Senior Thesis Student (1999)
  • Sylvia Heredia, BDFFP Intern (2001). Current Position: Ph.D. student at UC Riverside.
  • Laura Vivian Barbosa, Cerrado Plant Demography Project, Uberlandia. Laura has a BS and MS from the Universidade Federal de Uberlandia. Her interests are in decomposition, nutrient cycling, and Cerrado biogeochemistry.

Sabbatical Visitors and Exchange Scholars

  • Camila Castanho, Postgraduate Scholar (2006). Camila recently completed her Master’s degree at the Universidade de São Paulo, and came here in Spring 2006 to learn new techniques in ecosystem ecology.
  • Alexandre Oliveira, Sabbatical Visitor (2006). Alexandre is a faculty member at the Universidade de São Paulo. He is a forest ecologist and is interested in plant demography who conduced sabbatical research here in Spring 2006.
  • Ariadna Valentina Lopes. Sabbatical Visitor (2007). Ariadna is a faculty member at the Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, where she specializes on plant reproductive biology. Learn more about her research href=””>here.