Jessica Mahoney

Why I joined the ECS Ph.D. Program

I wanted to study animal behavior and ecology with a focus on conservation and management.

My research

My research areas are animal behavior, such as mate choice, parental care, and predator-prey interactions, and animal stress physiology. My thesis research focuses on how female red-winged blackbirds respond both behaviorally and physiologically to perceived threats during the breeding season. Specifically, I want to know what reproductive trade-offs females make in the presence of a perceived risk such as an avian predator, a brood parasite, or seasonal time constraints. In addition, I want to know how females respond physiologically in terms of stress response to the same risks, and what trade-offs females make between reproductive choices and self-maintenance.

Conference publications

  • Mahoney, J., Reed, W., and Linz, G. (2014) Behavioral and Physiological Response of Female Red-winged Blackbirds to Perceived Risks. In the 2014 National Sunflower Association Research Forum Conference , Jan. 8-9, 2014, Fargo, ND, National Sunflower Association.


  • Mahoney, J., Reed, W., and Linz, G. (2014) Behavioral Response of Female Red-winged Blackbirds to perceived Threats. Presented at the poster session of the Annual Meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, Jan. 3-7, 2014, Austin, TX. (Presented by J. Mahoney)