Savannah River Ecology Laboratory
(803) 725-7283 office
Brett received his undergraduate degree in Wildlife and Fisheries Conservation from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. While at Umass, Brett was involved with several herp projects including radio-tracking of Blanding’s Turtles and Box Turtles and trapping of Marbled Salamanders. The passion for herpetofauna that Brett learned from the Umass herp crew lead him to travel West in search of more exciting reptiles and research experience. After working with Desert Tortoises, Ridge-nosed Rattlesnakes, Prairie Rattlesnakes, Tiger Rattlesnakes, and various lizard communities he returned East to start a graduate program at Indiana-Purdue University under Dr. Bruce Kingsbury. For his graduate research Brett studied the response of the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake to clear-cutting in Northern Michigan. Several short stints studying Loggerhead Sea Turtles, Mallard Ducks, and Golden-winged Warblers followed completion of his M.S. Brett now happily finds himself at SREL.
Brett’s current research interests include investigating head-starting as a viable conservation management tool, assessing the influence of temperature on reptile habitat selection and spatial ecology, and investigating the influence of anthropogenic land use on reptile populations. At SREL he is currently involved with a head-starting project of the declining Desert Tortoise in California, re-introduction of Gopher Tortoises to Aiken County, investigating contaminant burdens in long-lived reptiles, and surveying for Gopher Tortoises and Flatwoods Salamanders. In his spare time, Brett enjoys birding, chasing his dog around, Finnish Film, and fantasy football.