Our Team

Michel Kohl – PI

Dr. Kohl is an Assistant Professor of Wildlife Management and Wildlife Extension Specialist in the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources. His research broadly focuses on spatial ecology, the fitness consequences of spatial behavior, and the implications of those behaviors for the conservation and management of wildlife.  For more details, his C.V. can be found here.

Michel is originally from the Ft. Peck Sioux and Assiniboine Reservation of northeastern Montana. Since leaving home, he has worked on a diverse range of species including bison, elk, wolves, cougars, sage-grouse, forest grouse, white-tailed deer, and most recently, black bears.

Fun Fact: Michel graduated with a whopping 6 kids in his high school class!

Current Students

Jennifer Brown (MS Student)

Jen will be joining us in Fall 2021 to study spatial and temporal changes in resource selection of black vultures. She will also be evaluating the effects of USDA Wildlife Services actions on vulture-livestock depredation.

Originally from Coventry, RI, Jen graduated with her B.S. in wildlife science from SUNY-ESF in 2021. Since graduation she has worked on mapping suitable habitat for ruffed grouse in New York State with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.

Fun Fact: One of Jennifer’s favorite pastimes is stargazing!

Cat Carter (MS Student)

Cat joined our group in Fall 2020 to study the impacts of a new dog hunt on black bear movement, home range, and demography in the North Georgia mountains. Deploying GPS collars and both hunting dogs and bears, this is the first study of its kind in the southeastern United States.

Originally from Thompson’s Station, TN, Cat graduated with her B.S. in Wildlife Management from the University of Tennessee in 2019. Since that time she had been working with the Georgia Division of Wildlife Resources as a black bear technician helping get her MS project up off the ground.

Fun Fact:

Summer Fink (PhD Student)

Summer will be joining us in Fall 2021 as both a Warnell Graduate Fellow and National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow to study human-wildlife interactions, coyote space use, and mesocarnivore occurrence across Atlanta, Ga. She will be using her results to create and distribute outreach materials to communities across Atlanta.  

Originally from Boydton, VA, Summer graduated with her B.S. in Fisheries and Wildlife Science from the University of Georgia in 2018. Prior to joining our group, she was a Lead Technician with the Urban Coyote Research Project in Chicago, Illinois. Her work in Chicago has helped lay a strong foundation for her graduate work at UGA.  

Fun Fact: Her favorite field snack is a peanut butter and pickle sandwich (sweet petites ONLY).

Casey Morrow (MNR Student)

Casey joined the lab group in Fall of 2020 to pursue a Master of Natural Resources. Over the next year, she will be working on a variety of extension and outreach projects including developing educational material for urban wildlife in Georgia and on the rabbit disease, RHDV2, that is rapidly spreading across the United States.

Casey joins us from down the street in Watkinsville, GA. She received her B.S. in Biology and a minor in Spanish from UGA in 2018. Since then, she worked as a lab technician in the field of genomics. Casey wishes to utilize her degree to pursue a career in wildlife conservation.

Fun Fact: Casey has been horseback riding for over 20 years, with ~15 years of competitive riding and training experience.

Collin Richter (MS Student)

Collin is an MS student co-advised by Dr. Michel Kohl and Dr. Tracey Tuberville (SREL). He started his work with the Kohl Lab in January of 2021.  His research focuses on the survival and movement of head-started Mojave Desert tortoises as well as the effects of Common Raven (Corvus corax) predation on juvenile tortoise recruitment. Collin’s research interests include movement and spatial ecology, as well as conservation and recovery of imperiled species.

Collin is from Canton, Michigan and obtained his BS in Zoology from Northern Michigan University in 2017. After graduation, Collin worked for the Martin Lab at Warnell, studying Northern Bobwhites and gopher tortoises, and spent a year assisting in rattlesnake research on Jekyll Island, GA. He plans to pursue a PhD after he finishes his MS.

Fun Fact: Collin owns a 21-year old leopard gecko named Spot

Lavendar Harris (Senior Undergrad)

Lavendar is a Fisheries and Wildlife major and Vice President of the Wildlife Society Student Chapter.  She joined the Kohl lab in the summer of 2021 to assist with deploying wildlife cameras to track wildlife in Athens Clarke County (ACC) as part of the UWIN study. For my Senior Thesis I will be expanding on this project and evaluating the impacts of urbanization on the abundance, distribution, and diel activity of wildlife across ACC.

She is originally from Covington, GA and was homeschooled since the 2nd grade. I hope to use my degree from UGA to pursue a career in mammalogy and wildlife conservation.

Fun Fact: Before coming to UGA, Lavendar worked on set of The Vampire Diaries spinoff Legacies as a “Salvatore Student”.

Daniel DeRose-Broeckert (Senior Undergrad)

Daniel joined the Kohl lab in the Fall of 2021 to work on his undergraduate thesis that focuses on nuisance wildlife removals within Atlanta, GA, by gathering data from commercial nuisance wildlife trappers, as well as the Georgia DNR’s Urban Wildlife Unit. This data will be used as part of our larger study evaluating human-wildlife interactions across Atlanta, GA.

Originally from Senoia, GA, Daniel graduated cum laude with an A.S. from Gordon State College in 2021, and has been pursuing a B.S. in Fisheries and Wildlife Management at Warnell and volunteering with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, banding geese and doves, trapping invasive feral hogs and doing habitat work on various Wildlife Management Areas. Daniel plans to pursue a M.S. degree in the future and is very passionate about conservation within the Southeastern United States.

Fun Fact: Daniel spent nine months above the Arctic Circle in Norway while serving in the Marine Corps.

Past Students

Ben Carr (B.S. 2021)
Thesis Title: Wildlife Behavioral Response to a Global Pandemic
Ben is currently taking some time off from school, working as the North Georgia Black Bear Intern with Georgia DNR.

Calvin Ellis (B.S. 2020)
Thesis Title: Evaluating Elk (Cervus canadensis) Sightability in Eastern Kentucky
After completing his undergrad, Calvin quickly returned to school to pursue his M.S.. For his thesis, he will be studying mule deer ecology at Texas A&M – Kingsville under the guidance of Drs. Mike Cherry and Levi Heffelfinger.

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