Speaker: Dr. Phil Allman, PhD, Assoc. Professor of Vertebrate Zoology, FGCU
To learn more about Gopher tortoises are long-lived reptiles that occupy upland habitat throughout Florida including forests, pastures, and yards. They dig deep burrows for shelter and forage on low-growing plants. Gopher tortoises share these burrows with more than 350 other species, and are therefore referred to as a keystone species. Conservation of gopher tortoises depends not only on the efforts of FWC and other conservation groups, but also on Florida's citizens. There are many ways to co-exist with these gentle land tortoises.Come here Phil Allman talk about these docile creatures.
Phil is an organismal biologist with research interests in evolutionary biology, ecology, and conservation biology. He maintains a local research program that investigates habitat use, life history, and demography in fragmented populations of threatened gopher tortoises. He also co-direct a long-term sea turtle research and conservation program in Ghana (West Africa). And more recently, my lab has started exploring the habitat use and demography of critically endangered hingeback tortoises in Ghana's rainforest. The lab works with a team of local and international colleagues that utilize molecular and ecological tools to better understand population dynamics of threatened and endangered species so that best management practices can be developed. I welcome undergraduate and graduate students that are interested in pursuing ecological studies on protected species.