Josiah Nelson

Why I joined the ECS Ph.D. Program 

I joined the ECS Ph.D. Program because I want the research that I do to directly apply to the conservation of species and their habitat. The Conservation Biology track of the ECS program allows me to do that.

My research

My research is broadly focused on foraging ecology of bats, habitat use of bat species, ecology, and conservation biology. Currently, little more than landscape level habitat associations are known for many bat species. However, understanding how species spatially and temporally utilize habitat within a landscape may be critical for conservation. My primary research focus is the fine-scale foraging habitat associations of ND bat species. Many ecological factors affect the way any given bat species chooses to forage in its environment. To investigate this, I’m conducting acoustic surveys to passively monitor bat activity in various habitats that have been characterized in fine detail. The acoustic study is also coupled with radio telemetry to track bats during foraging bouts. This information can then be assessed through the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to identify habitat selection of individual bats. I’m also continuing a winter study with the goal of identifying and documenting hibernacula, over-winter species presence, winter habitat use, and fall/spring activity periods of bats in Theodore Roosevelt National Park (South Unit).

Peer reviewed publications

  • Nelson, J., Barnhart, P., and Gillam, E. (2012). Development of the over-water mist net support system: a novel ecological research tool. Acta Chiropterologica, 14(2), 491–495.

Presentations

Oral

  • Nelson, J., and Gillam, E. (2012). The “Nixon” Over-water Mist Netting System: A Novel Biological Research Tool. Presented at NDSU Innovation Week, Jan. 2012, Fargo, ND. (Presented by J. Nelson)

Poster

  • Nelson, J., and Gillam E. (2013). Foraging Ecology of Temperate Bats in North Dakota. Presented at the joint meeting of 16th International Bat Research Conference and 43rd North American Symposium on Bat Research , Aug., 2013, San Jose, Costa Rica. (Presented by J. Nelson)
  • Nelson, J., and Gillam, E. (2012). Foraging Ecology of Bats in North Dakota. Presented at the North American Symposium on Bat Research, Oct., 2012, San Juan, Puerto Rico. (Presented by J. Nelson)
  • Nelson, J., Barnhart, P., and Gillam, E. February (2012). Development of “The Nixon” Over-water Mist Netting System. Presented at the joint meeting of the ND Chapter and the MN Chapter of The Wildlife Society, Feb., 2012, Fargo, ND. (Presented by J. Nelson)
  • Nelson, J., and Gillam, E. (2012). The “Nixon” Over-water Mist Netting System: A Novel Biological Research Tool. Presented at NDSU Innovation Week, Jan., 2012, Fargo, ND. (Presented by J. Nelson)
  • Nelson, J., Barnhart, P., and Gillam E. October (2011). Development of “The Nixon” Over-water Mist Netting System. Presented at the North American Symposium on Bat Research , Oct., 2011, Toronto, Canada. (Presented by J. Nelson)

Awards and Honors

  • Speleobooks Award for poster presentation given at the 41st Annual North American Symposium on Bat Research, October 2011
  • United Sportsmen of North Dakota Scholarship, March 2011
  • North Dakota Chapter of the Wildlife Society Undergraduate Award for North Dakota State University, January 2011
  • Dean’s List, North Dakota State University, January 2010, January 2011, December 2011
  • Outstanding Student in Botany, Bismarck State College, April 2009
  • President’s Honor Roll, Bismarck State College, December 2007, December 2008, May 2009