brittany.barker [at] oregonstate.edu
I investigate how past and current environmental perturbations like climate change, fires, and the introduction of non-native species have influenced animal and plant population dynamics. My work is conducted on a variety of empirical systems, including insects, frogs, and plants. My passion for conserving biodiversity has motivated me to combine elements of basic and applied research in my research program.My current research supports the development of science-based, ecologically-informed site and spatialized models that can help agricultural decision makers with managing and monitoring pests, their crop hosts, and their natural enemies. The implications of my work include but are not limited to detecting invasive species before they can establish and spread, reducing abundance of pests before they cause widespread damage, releasing biological control agents in locations which optimize pest pressure, and increasing growers’ reliance on beneficial species over chemical pest control methods. My previous research has focused on 1) combining and analyzing remote sensing and ecological data sets to measure patterns and drivers of vegetation change through time; and 2) characterizing and identifying the types and sources of genetic variation that shape the movement and demographics of plant and animal populations.