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Advisor: Tracy Rittenhouse
Jenny’s research interests are in wildlife management and conservation. Inparticular, she is most interested in themanagement of game species in a changing landscape. Her previous work focused primarily on fawn mortality and chronic wasting disease monitoring, however her experience spansmany different taxa including black bear, Canada geese, sea ducks, small mammals and invasive species. She is excited to work collaboratively and merge research and management to solve many of the problems we face today.
With funding from CT DEEP, her masters project will focus on finding the best way to estimate white-tailed deer abundances in Connecticut’s deer management zones. She will modify an existing sightability model for the Connecticut landscape. Much of southern New England suffers from inconsistent snow, a key player in the effectiveness of traditional visual aerial surveys. Jenny plans to investigate how land cover, animal behavior, group size, and topographic aspect influence thesightability model as a way to increase its future accuracy at estimating deerabundances. She will also incorporate a camera study to not onlyestimateabundance using unmarked individuals,but to understand how deerabundances vary with respect to areasopen and closed to hunting pressure. This study will provide state biologistswith comparable estimates ofabundance using two different techniques that vary in effort, cost and time, assisting them in their decision abouthow to efficiently and accurately estimate deer abundance in CT.