Elizabeth Forys, Ph.D.

Professor of Environmental Science & Biology

Environmental Studies 109

Degrees

Ph.D. University of Florida, Wildlife Ecology & Conservation, May 1995.

“Metapopulations of marsh rabbit: a population viability analysis of the Lower Keys marsh rabbit (Sylvilagus palustris hefneri).”

M.S. University of Virginia, Environmental Sciences/Ecology, 1990.

“The effect of immigration on island colonization and population persistence of Oryzomys palustris on the barrier islands of Virginia.”

B.A. University of Virginia, Environmental Sciences, 1988.

Elizabeth Forys

I am interested in how to preserve declining and rare species. Much of my current research focuses on beach-nesting birds and the use of GIS to better understand and manage these threatened species.

Positions Held Following Award of Doctoral Degree

9/05- present Professor of Environmental Sciences and Biology, Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, Florida 33711.

9/01-8/05 Associate Professor of Environmental Sciences and Biology, Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, Florida 33711.

6/96-8/01 Assistant Professor of Environmental Sciences and Biology, Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, Florida 33711.

1/95-5/96 Endangered Species Biologist, Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission, Marathon Key, Florida 33050.

Grant Support Activities

American Bird Conservacy.  $8,235.  2016.  Protection, monitoring, and outreach for beach-nesting birds in Pinellas County, Florida.  I am the PI.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.  $30,487.  2015-2017. Use of Conditioned Taste Aversion to Decrease Shore and Seabird Egg Predation by Fish Crows.  I am the PI.

American Bird Conservacy.  $7,500.  2015.  Protection, monitoring, and outreach for beach-nesting birds in Pinellas County, Florida.  I am the PI.

American Bird Conservancy.  $17,250.  2014.  Protection, monitoring, and outreach for beach-nesting birds in Pinellas County, Florida.  I am the PI.

American Bird Conservancy.  $5,050.  2013.  Use of technology to deter disturbance to birds.  I am the PI.

Audubon of Florida.  $9,500.  2011.  Adaptive Management of Disturbance to Red knots and other shorebirds:  SW Florida.  I am co-PI with Marianne Korosy.

National Fish and Wildlife Federation.  $50,000, 2009-2011.  Improved management of Southwestern Florida’s city and county beaches for beach-dependent birds.  Julie Wraithmell is the Principal Investigator and I am a Co-Investigator.

Together Green (a partnership between the Audubon Society and Toyota).  $9,000.  2009.  Protecting Beach Nesting Bird Summer Habitats in Lower Tampa Bay Area.  I wrote the grant, David Kandz and Barb Howard of St. Petersburg Audubon helped administer it.

Eckerd College , Summer Undergraduate Research Program,  $5,100, 2009, Least Tern banding project.

National Science Foundation, $1,663,761, 2007-2010:  The Influence of Oceanographic and Biological Processes on the Distribution of Cetaceans on the West Florida Shelf.  David Mann, University of South Florida, is Principal Investigator and I am a Contributing Investigator.

Nongame Program, Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission.  $29,713.   2005-2009  Can education help make Florida municipal beaches more suitable for beach nesting birds?  I am Principal Investigator. Alison Ormsby and Monique Abrams are Contributing Investigators.

Eckerd College Natural Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research Program, $5,000, 2005, Study of Least Tern Predation.

Gulfstream Environmental Research Trust, $2,600, 2005, Beach nesting bird monitoring.  With Monique Abrams, St. Petersburg Audubon Society

Eckerd College Natural Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research Program, $5,000, 2004, Study of Least Tern Predation.

Tampa Bay Estuary Program, $3,500, 2003-2004.  Least Tern Conservation & Public Education, with Monique Abrams, St. Petersburg Audubon Society.

Sandpiper Technologies.  $2,500, 2003, Assessing the success of replacing fallen Least Tern chicks back onto rooftop nesting areas. This equipment grant was with Elizabeth DeVries, Eckerd student.

United States Fish and Wildlife Service , $18,100, 2000-2003.  Recovery actions for the Lower Keys marsh rabbit (Sylvilagus palustris hefneri) and the silver rice rat (Oryzomys palustris natator).  I was the Principal Investigator.

Lancy Foundation, National Conference for Undergraduate Research.  $25,000, 2001,  A Proposal for Summer Support of Exceptional Undergraduates under the Auspices of the National Conference for Undergraduate Research (NCUR):  Water Scarcity in the Tampa Bay Area – renewal.  Bill Kelly, Eckerd College, and I were both Principal Investigators.

Lancy Foundation, National Conference for Undergraduate Research.  $24,500, 1999, A Proposal for Summer Support of Exceptional Undergraduates under the Auspices of the National Conference for Undergraduate Research (NCUR):  Water Scarcity in the Tampa Bay Area – renewal.  Bill Kelly, Eckerd College, and I were both Principal Investigators.

Audubon Society of Florida.  $3,000, 1999, Population ecology of the ornate diamondback terrapin in Tampa Bay, Florida.  I was the Principal Investigator.

Department of Defense, $64,300, 1997-1999.  The effect of red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta) on gopher tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus) at Camp Shelby, Mississippi. Deborah Epperson, Mississippi Natural Heritage Program, was the Principal Investigator.  I was a Contributing Investigator.

Department of Defense.  $40,000, 1997-1999.  Spatial analysis of the effect of red imported fire ants on the Florida Grasshopper sparrow.  Craig Allen, University of Floirda, was the Principal Investigator, I was a Contributing Investigator.

Howard Hughes Program for Student-Faculty Research .  1996-1998. $66,000.    An integrated approach to assessing the social behavior and habitat use of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Boca Ciega Bay.   John Reynolds, Eckerd College, was the Principal Investigator.  I was a Contributing Investigator.

Nongame Program, Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission.  $14,000, 1996-1998.  The potential for negative impacts by red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta) on listed herpetofauna, mammals, and invertebrates in the lower Florida Keys.  I was the Principal Investigator.  Craig Allen and Dan Wojcik were Contributing Investigators.

Southwest Florida Water Management District.  $5,000, 1997, Eckerd College’s Xeriscape Garden and Public School Video.  I was the Principal Investigator.

The Nature Conservancy .  $1,000, 1995, The impact of fire on red important fire ant densities on Nature Conservancy property in the Lower Keys.  I was Principal Investigator.

United States Fish and Wildlife Service $2,500, 1992.  Recovery of the Lower Keys marsh rabbit.  I was Principal Investigator.

The Nature Conservancy, $500, 1992.  Impact of a prescribed burn on the mammalian fauna in the Keys.   I was Principal Investigator.

Refereed Publications

Forys, E. A., P. Hindsley, M. P. Miller*, J. B. Wilson, L. N. Margeson, D. W. Margeson.  2016.  Can Video Cameras Decrease Human Intrusion into a Closed Natural Area?  Natural Areas Journal.  36:500-506.

Forys, E. A., A. N. Clift*, and A. A. Salsky*. 2016.  Productivity of Ospreys (Pandion haliaetus) nesting in highly urbanized Pinellas County, Florida.  Florida Field Naturalist.  41:1-10.

Forys, E. A, D. Hopkins, P. Ingham, M. Miller*, and L.  Gluckman*.  2015.  Do Effigies Deter Fish Crows hunting in a Black Skimmer Colony? Southeastern Naturalist.  14:  635-640

Simard P., C. C. Wall, J. B. Allen, R. S. Wells, S. Gowans, and E. A. Forys.  2015.  Dolphin Distribution on the West Florida Shelf Using Visual Surveys and Passive Acoustic Monitoring.  Aquatic Mammals 41:  167-187.

Cosentino, B. B. J., Marsh, D. M., Jones, K. S., Apodaca, J. J., Bates, C., Beach, J., E. A.  Forys… and A. Willey.  2014.  Citizen science reveals widespread negative effects of roads on amphibian distributions.  Biological Conservation.  180:  31-38.

Forys, E. A., A. Poppema-Bannon*, K. Krajcik* and W. A. Szelistowski.  2013.  Roof-nesting Least Terns Travel to Forage in Brackish/Marine Waters.  Southeastern Naturalist.  12:  238-242.

Yancy*, M. R. and E. A. Forys.  2010.   Black skimmers (Rynchops niger) forage when light levels are low.  Waterbirds.  33:  556-559.

Ormsby, A. A. and E. A. Forys.  2010.  Beach user perceptions of beach-nesting birds in Pinellas County, Florida.  Human Dimensions of Wildlife.  15: 119-128.

Simard, P., Hibbard*, A., McCallister*, K., Frankel, A., Zeddies, D., Sisson, G., Gowans, S., Forys, E. and D. Mann.  2009.  Depth dependent variation of the echolocation pulse rate of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncates).   Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. 127:568-578.

LaFever, D. H., Schmidt, P. M., Perry, N. D.,  Faulhaber, C. A.,  Lopez, R. R., Silvy, N. J. and E. A. Forys.  2008.  Use of a population viability analysis to evaluate human-induced impacts and mitigation for the endangered Lower Keys marsh rabbit.  Human-wildlife Conflicts.  2:260-269.

Forys, E. A. and M. Borboen-Abrams.  2006.  Roof-top selection by Least Terns in Pinellas County, Florida. Waterbirds. 29:407-524.

Forys, E. A. and C. R. Allen.  2005.  The impacts of sprawl on biodiversity:  the ant fauna of the Lower Florida Keys.  Ecology and Society (formerly called Conservation Ecology).  10: 25. [online] URL: http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol10/iss1/art25/

Forys, E. A., Abrams, M. and S. J. King.  2005.  Cooper’s hawk predates on Least Tern chicks on a rooftop in Pinellas County, Florida.  Florida Field Naturalist.  33: 53-54.

Mazzocchi*, A. B.  and E. A. Forys.  2005.  Nesting habitat selection of the Coastal Least Tern.  Florida Field Naturalist.  33:  71-80.

Wyatt*, J. L.  and E. A. Forys.  2005.  Conservation Implications of Predation by Cuban Treefrogs (Osteopilus septentrionalis) on Native Hylids in Florida.  Southeastern Naturalist.  3:695–700.

DeVries*, E. A.  and E. A. Forys.  2004.  Loss of tar and gravel rooftops in Pinellas County, Florida and potential effects on Least Tern populations.  Florida Field Naturalist.  31:1-6.

Forys, E. A., Kelly, W. B. and D. T. Ward*.  2003.  Invasion Biology on your campus:  investigating the red imported fire ant in the Southeastern United States.  American Biology Teacher.  2003:  53-55.

Forys, E. A., and C. R. Allen.  2002.  Functional group change within and across scales following invasions and extinctions in the Everglades ecosystem.  Ecosystems 5:339-347.

Forys, E. A., Allen, C. R. and D. P. Wojcik. 2002.  Influence of the proximity and amount of human development and roads on the occurrence of the red imported fire ant in the lower Florida Keys.  Biological Conservation 108:27-33.

Herrington*, K. L. and E. A. Forys.  2002.  Distribution and abundance of dolphin watching companies in Florida.  Florida Scientist 65:  273–280

Forys, E. A., Quistorff*, A., Allen, C. R. and D. P. Wojcik.  2001.  The likely cause of extinction of the tree snail (Orthalicus reses reses SAY).  Journal of Molluscan Studies. 67: 369-376.

Forys, E. A., A. Quistorff* and C. R. Allen.  2001.  Potential fire ant  (Hymenoptera:  Formicidae) impact on the endangered Schaus swallowtail (Lepidoptera:  Papilionidae).  Florida Entomologist.  84:254-258.

Allen, C. R., Forys, E. A., Rice, K. G. and D. P. Wojick.  2001.  Effects of fire ants (Hymenoptera:  Formicidae) on hatching turtles and prevalence of fire ants on sea turtle nesting beaches in Florida. Potential fire ant threat to sea turtles.  Florida Entomologist.  84:250-254

Wojcik, D. P., Allen, C. R., Brenner, D. A., Forys, E. A., Jouvenaz, D. P., and R. S. Lutz.  2001.  Red imported fire ants:  impact on biodiversity.  American Entomologist 47:16-23.

Forys, E. A.  1999.  Food habits of the Lower Keys marsh rabbit (Sylvilagus palustris hefneri).  Florida Scientist 62:106-110.

Allen, C. R., Forys, E. A. and C. S. Holling.  1999.  Body Mass Patterns Predict Invasions and Extinctions in Transforming Landscapes.  Ecosystems 2:114-121.

Forys, E. A. and S. R. Humphrey.  1999.  The importance of patch attributes and context to the management and recovery of an endangered lagomorph.  Landscape Ecology 14:177-185.

Forys, E. A. and C. R. Allen.  1999.  Biological invasions and deletions: community change.  Biological Conservation 87:341-347.

Forys, E. A. and S. R. Humphrey.  1999.  Use of population viability analysis to evaluate management options for the endangered Lower Keys marsh rabbit.  Journal of Wildlife Management 63:251-260.

Forys, E. A. and S. R. Humphrey.  1997.  Comparison of 2 methods to estimate density of an endangered lagomorph.  Journal of Wildlife Management 61:86-92.

Forys, E. A. and S. R. Humphrey.  1996.  Home range and movements of the Lower Keys marsh rabbit in a highly fragmented environment.  Journal of Mammalogy 77:1042-1048.

Forys, E. A. and N. D. Moncrief.  1994.  Gene flow among island populations of marsh rice rats (Oryzomys palustris).  Virginia Journal of Science 45:3-11.

Forys, E. A. and R. D. Dueser.  1993.  Inter-island movements of rice rats (Oryzomys palustris).  American Midland Naturalist 130:408-412.

Memberships

  • Colonial Waterbird Society
  • Florida Academy of Scientists
  • Ecological Society of America
  • Society for Conservation Biology
  • The Wildlife Society

Classes Taught

  • Introduction to Environmental Studies
  • Introduction to Environmental Biology
  • Conservation Biology
  • Environmental Studies Senior Research and Exam Class
  • GIS for Environmental Studies
  • Environmental Internship (winter term class)
  • Research in the Florida Keys (winter term class)
  • Field Ornitholgoy (winter term class)