Sky Island Biodiversity and Conservation

 

A webinar series & discussion featuring diverse speakers addressing the conservation and management of sky island biodiversity in the U.S. and Mexico.

Included on this page: information and bios for the speakers featured in the three-week workshops, PDF slides for the presentations, and recordings of each workshop's presentations.

Thank you for all who joined this webinar series!

 

Sky Island Biodiversity and Conservation

Biogeographic insights of species traits and environmental history for conservation and management of sky island biodiversity in the U.S. and Mexico

Co-hosted by the University of Arizona’s Bridging Biodiversity and Conservation Science Program, The City College of New York of CUNY and the National Science Foundation.

Los materiales para esta serie de seminarios web semanales y discusiones también se proporcionan en español.

pagina en español

Goal: To extend new biogeographic insights to sky island biodiversity to conservation practitioners. To understand and develop transnational science to address conservation challenges in the region.

Summary: This webinar series aims to bring together academic scientists, agencies, NGOs, and conservation practitioners among other stakeholders in Mexico and the Southwestern U.S. borderlands to discuss new biogeographic approaches and conservation challenges to sky island biodiversity. We will begin by introducing new advancements in a Constraint-based Dynamic Island Biogeography (CDIB) model and its utility in predicting past, present and future biodiversity of sky island systems.

This workshop will:

  1. introduce new concepts and tools from biodiversity scaling and species distribution modeling for studying sky island biodiversity,
  2. gain understanding of the utility of the CDIB model and conservation challenges from stakeholders and practitioners and studies of specific regions and species,
  3. co-production of knowledge in advancing the basic and applied utility of the CDIB model and tools through collaborative networking and discussion sessions,
  4. outline a collaborative synthesis paper on applications of CDIB to conservation in the region.

For more information about the grant: NSF grant to study 'sky-island' mammals of the Sierra Madre Oriental of Mexico


April 16, Session 1: Introduction

2-4 PM EST, 1-3 PM CDMX, 11 AM-1 PM PST/Arizona

Paulo Quadri, Moderator, Sky Islands Alliance
Climate-induced reversal of tree growth patterns in tropical sub-alpine pines

Erica E. Johnson, City College New York
Coupling species distribution models with machine learning classification analyses for predictive vegetation mapping

View the PDF presentation

Robbie Burger, University of Arizona
A constraint-based model of dynamic island biogeography in the face of global change

View the PDF presentation

 

Watch the recording

Meet the speakers

Paulo Quadri Barba is the Conservation Director at Sky Island Alliance. His research has focused on three major topics: (1) the eco-physiological responses of high-elevation tree species to climate change and their implications for refugia conservation and management, (2) multi-scale geographic and institutional factors influencing the local economic impacts of protected areas, and (3) design and evaluation of conservation and restoration strategies in fragmented and climate-threatened landscapes. He has also collaborated in research exploring the links between invasive species, ecosystem degradation, and the emergence of zoonotic diseases.

Erica Johnson is a PhD student at the City University of New York. Erica has participated in many research projects, both in academic and non-profit settings, seeking to integrate field work and landscape ecology. Currently, she is interested in the biogeography of diseases under global change. Her Ph.D. research focuses on understanding how landscape may influence biotic interactions among parasites and hosts and their potential implications for human health.

Robbie Burger is a Bridging Biodiversity and Conservation Science Postdoctoral fellow at the University of Arizona. In the fall of 2021, he will be starting as assistant professor at the University of Kentucky. Robbie is a macroecologist. His research combines theory and data from field studies and large datasets to: i) uncover general rules underlying biodiversity, and ii) to use these "macroecological rules'' as a framework to address practical issues in global change, biodiversity conservation and human ecology.


April 23, Session 2: Sky Island Biodiversity

2-4 PM EST, 1-3 PM CDMX, 11 AM-1 PM PST/Arizona

Ella Vázquez-Domínguez, Instituto de Ecología, UNAM
Landscape genomics of the rodent Peromyscus melanotis on a highland temperate forest

View the PDF presentation

Jessica Pérez Alquicira, Universidad de Guadalajara-Cátedras CONACYT
The influence of climatic transitions at the end of Pleistocene on the distribution of genetic diversity and breeding system of Oxalis alpina 

View the PDF presentation

John Wiens, University of Arizona
Climate-driven extinction shapes Sky Island biogeography

Alicia Mastretta Yanes, National Commision for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (CONABIO)
Long-term in situ persistence of biodiversity in tropical sky islands

 

Watch the recording

Meet the Speakers

Dr. Ella Vázquez is a molecular ecologist at the Instituto de Ecología, UNAM, working on population and landscape genetics and genomics, phylogeography, hybridization, invasive species, and conservation of endangered species and natural resources. Her research mainly focuses on vertebrates in ecosystems ranging from tropical forests to deserts and from skyland to oceanic islands.

Jessica Pérez Alquicira is a full-time professor at Universidad de Guadalajara-Cátedras CONACYT, since 2016. Her main field of research is in population genetics and phylogeography, focusing mainly on plants including the Agave, Physalis, Guadua and Brahea genera.

John J. Wiens is a Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Arizona. He is interested in evolution, ecology, biogeography, and phylogenetics, especially the origins of biodiversity patterns and responses of species to climate change. He strives to address topics that span all (or most) living organisms, but his favorite study systems are reptiles and amphibians.

Alicia Mastretta-Yanes is a researcher in Mexico’s National Commision for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (CONABIO). Broadly, her research aims to incorporate evolutionary processes into the conservation and management of Mexican biodiversity. Her research covers topics ranging from the effect of topography and climate fluctuations in shaping population genetic structure, to the genetic implications of domestication and human management of crops, crop wild-relatives and trees.


April 30, Session 3: Conservation challenges to sky island systems

2-4 PM EST, 1-3 PM CDMX, 11 AM-1 PM PST/Arizona

Alberto Búrquez, Ecología de la Biodiversidad, UNAM-Hermosillo
Sapling mortality from hotter drought threatens pine forest persistence across Megamexico

View the PDF presentation

Melissa Merrick, University of Arizona, San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Island treasures: threatened forests and endemic squirrels of the Madrean Archipelago

View the PDF presentation

Angelina Martinez-Yrizar, Instituto de Ecologia, UNAM, Hermosillo, Mexico
Resilience of ecosystems to extreme climatic events

View the PDF presentation

 

Meet the Speakers

Alberto Búrquez currently works at the Instituto de Ecología, Department of Ecology of Biodiversity, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Alberto does research in Ecology, Evolutionary Biology and Ethnoecology. His current projects include: 1) Columnar cacti: ecology, evolution, societal services. 2) Effects of extreme events on vegetation, and 3) drought and freezing resistance in Neotropical plants at the edge of distribution.

Melissa Merrick is an associate director of recovery ecology for the southwest hub at the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance and an adjunct assistant research professor at the University of Arizona. Her research primarily focuses on the ecology of vertebrates of conservation concern. She incorporates natural history, population dynamics, space use, habitat selection, behavioral ecology and landscape connectivity to understand how animals respond to their environment, including impacts of disturbance and invasions.

Angelina Martínez-Yrízar is a researcher at the Instituto de Ecología, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico. Her research interests have centered in understanding the structure and functioning –biomass, primary productivity, litter decomposition and nutrient cycling of water-limited ecosystems in Mexico. She also studies the effect and ecosystem response to extreme climatic events (frosts, drought and hurricanes) and the vulnerability of ecosystems to land-use and climate change.


Flyers for the April 2021 workshops

sky island conservation flyer_compressed.pdf

sky island conservation flyer_compressed.pdf

view | download 227.23 KB

IslasdelCielo_flyerCorrected.pdf

IslasdelCielo_flyerCorrected.pdf

view | download 13.48 MB