Department of Zoology

Thomas O. Crist
Professor and Director of IES
Ph.D. Utah State University, 1990
landscape ecology, biodiversity, conservation biology, statistical ecology, insect ecology

172 PSN
254 UPH

167F PSN



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Office Hours:
  Monday . . . .
  Tuesday . . . .
  Wednesday . .
  Thursday. . . .
  Friday. . . . . . Others by appt.

Biographical Information:

Thomas Crist is a terrestrial ecologist with research interests in landscape ecology, biodiversity, and conservation biology. Using both experimental and landscape approaches, he examines how habitat fragmentation and edges influence animal movement, population distribution, and community diversity. He also investigates the effects of management practices and land use on forest insect biodiversity at multiple scales, from local habitats to biogeographic regions. The scope of his field studies ranges from old fields and small woodlots to larger parks and preserves. His research incorporates a wide variety of insect groups including ants, beetles, butterflies, and moths. Dr. Crist also has broad interests in the roles of animals in terrestrial ecosystems, including seed dispersal, herbivory, and effects of animals on plant communities and soils.

His research uses a variety of approaches in the field and laboratory. Field methods emphasize experimental manipulations and spatial measures of population and community structure. In the laboratory, he uses spatial analysis, simulation modeling, and geographic information systems to relate field data on animal responses to habitat heterogeneity. Dr. Crist teaches undergraduate courses in ecology and invertebrate zoology, and graduate courses in ecology.

Courses Taught:

  1. Fundamentals of Ecology (ZOO 204)
  2. Invertebrate Zoology (ZOO 312)
  3. Field Methods in Population Ecology (ZOO 437/537)
  4. Population and Community Ecology (ZOO 671)
  5. Graduate Seminar (ZOO 710)

Recent Publications:

  1. Haynes KJ and TO Crist. 2009. Insect herbivory in an experimental agroecosystem: the roles of habitat area, fragmentation, and the matrix. Oikos 118: 1477-1486.

  2. Crowl TA, TO Crist, RR Parmenter, GE Belovsky and AE Lugo. 2008. The spread of invasive species and infectious disease as drivers of ecosystem change in an increasingly connected world. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 5: 238-246.

  3. Diekötter T, KJ Haynes, D Mazeffa and TO Crist. 2007. Direct and indirect effects of habitat structure and matrix composition on species interactions among flower-visiting insects. Oikos 116: 1588-1598.

  4. Hambäck PA, KS Summerville, I Steffan-Dewenter, J Krauss, G Englund and TO Crist. 2007. Habitat specialization, body size, and family identity explain density-area relationships in Lepidoptera in a cross-continental comparison. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 104: 8368-8373.

  5. Crist TO and JA Veech. 2006. Additive partitioning of rarefaction curves and species-area relationships: unifying alpha, beta, and gamma diversity with sample size and habitat area. Ecology Letters 9: 923-932.