Nathan Piekielek

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Ecology & Environmental Sciences PhD
Montana State University
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My dissertation research leverages some of the best NASA remote-sensing technology and ecosystem models to see what we can learn about the two biggest drivers of ecological change within and adjacent to US National Parks, land use and climate change, and their ecological consequences at landscape scales. I address this topic in three chapters. First, I quantify the extent of fragmentation of ecosystem types from pre-European settlement to the present day for 4 protected area centered ecosystems around the country. Two, I explore the biophysical controls of land surface phenology in a focused study area spanning the northern Yellowstone National Park boundary and how human land use modifies these controls. Three, I demonstrate how the spatial and temporal dimensions of forage availability, as influenced by land use and climate, have the potential to affect the seasonal space use of migratory herbivores in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.


MSU IoE Office

Montana State University
605 Leon Johnson Hall
Bozeman, MT 59717
(406) 994-2374
MSU Director: Bruce Maxwell

UM IoE Office

The Universityi of Montana

The University of Montana
Davidson Honors College
Missoula, MT 59812
(406) 243-6058
UM Director: Maury Valett


Montana University System

Montana University System

Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education
2500 Broadway Street
Helena, MT 59620