Search Projects

A red-shouldered hawk viewed through a spotting scope

Petaluma wetland bird diversity

Faculty: Wendy St. John
Partners: Petaluma Wetlands Alliance

We calculated and compared species diversity indices for birds observed by the Petaluma Wetlands Alliance in March surveys between 2010 and 2019. 

Student holding juvenile skink

Effects of microclimate on herpetofaunal diversity

2017 to 2019
Faculty: Wendy St. John, Martha Shott, Nathan Rank
Partners: Center for Environmental Inquiry

Multiple studies that assess suitability of habitat for reptiles and amphibians.

Students taking soil samples

Carbon sequestration in wetlands

2018 to 2019
Faculty: Michelle Goman
Partners: Center for Environmental Inquiry

The amount of organic carbon is a direct indicator of the soil’s ability to sequester carbon dioxide. We study how organic carbon varies with land use and habitat type.


California red-legged frog

California red-legged frog studies

2016 to 2019
Faculty: Derek Girman, Fran Keller
Partners: Sonoma Mountain Ranch Preservation Foundation

We are studying the habitat requirements, and effects of bullfrogs and rainfall on frog movement to help identify factors that could improve California red-legged frog conservation.

California Tiger Salamander

Tiger salamander movement and distribution

2015 to 2019
Faculty: Derek Girman, Jeff Baldwin
Partners: Sonoma County Water Agency, U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife

The California tiger salamander, Ambystoma califoriense. is an endangered species that is endemic to California. To better understand the movement patterns and distribution of this species, we studied the movement of adult salamanders movement between aquatic and upland habitat on the Santa Rosa Plain, and investigated how environmental factors affect reproduction.

Juvenile turtle and calipers

Growth and recruitment in western pond turtles

Faculty: Daniel Crocker

The western pond turtle (Emys marmorata) is listed as a California Species of Special Concern. We are studying factors that influence growth rate, a key variable in maintaining viable populations. 

Juvenile steelhead trout in plastic cups

New device for monitoring steelhead larvae

Faculty: Ali Kujoory
Partners: Trout Unlimited

We created a device to monitor temperature, oxidation reduction potential, and light value of tanks used by Trout Unlimited to raise the trout eggs they provide at schools for programs like "Steelhead in the Classroom".

Ticks in gass vials

Frequency of ticks carrying Lyme disease

Faculty: Nathan Rank, Martha Shott, Melina Kozanitas, Wendy St. John
Partners: Pepperwood Preserve, Center for Environmental Inquiry, Sonoma County Public Health Laboratory

Western black-legged ticks, Ixodes pacificus, are carriers of Lyme disease and can be often found in local grasslands. We assessed ticks from two Sonoma County sites that receive visitors daily: Pepperwood Preserve and Fairfield Osborn Preserve. We found no evidence of Lyme disease at either preserve.

Students taking water samples in creek

Effects of land use on water quality

Faculty: Robin Glas, Wendy St. John, Nathan Rank
Partners: Center for Environmental Inquiry

Macroinvertebrate, bacterial and water quality studies of Copeland Creek

Student placing temperature sensor in creek

Steelhead habitat quality studies

2016 to 2019
Faculty: Wendy St. John, Robin Glas, Martha Shott, Nathan Rank, Jeremy Qualls, Melina Kozanitas
Partners: Sonoma State University, Center for Environmental Inquiry

Phan et al 2016: We investigated the levels of fine sediment at two locations in Sonoma Creek, to assess habitat suitability for s