Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: South Carolina
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

South Carolina Staff Member

Dr. Katherine W. McFadden

K. McFadden (2012)

Assistant Unit Leader


  • Ph D Columbia Universtiy 2004
  • Other Columbia Universtiy 2001
  • MA Columbia University 2001
  • MS Texas A&M University 1999
  • BA University of California, Santa Cruz 1995


Work in my lab includes a combination of field and lab-based ecological research that focuses on both theoretical and applied questions in the areas of community ecology, population ecology, and conservation biology. My research largely relates to the conservation and management of large vertebrates such as carnivores or marine turtles. My research examines the temporal and spatial variation in movement patterns, habitat selection, and population ecology of wildlife. I also work to develop meaningful environmental policy and management recommendations based on my ecological research. While much of my work focuses on endangered and threatened species, I seek to understand the role species play in structuring communities and in maintaining ecosystem function.

Teaching Interest

Wildlife biology and management, conservation biology, population ecology, field methods

Research Interest

Wildlife conservation ecology, species-habitat relationships, population dynamics, disease ecology, foraging ecology

Research Publications Publication Date
Population distribution of green turtles at Palmyra Atoll, Central Pacific: Insights from mtDNA and dispersal modeling. 2013. Naro-Maciel E, Gaughran SJ, Putman NF, Amato G, Arengo F, Dutton PH, McFadden KW, Vintinner E, Sterling EJ. Journal of the Royal Society Interface | Abstract | Download 2014-04-30
Ndu, U., J.S. Lamb, S. Janssen, R. Rossi, Y. Satgé, and P.G.R Jodice. 2020. Mercury, cadmium, copper, arsenic, and selenium measurements in the feathers of adult Eastern Brown Pelicans and chicks in multiple breeding grounds in the northern Gulf of Mexico. Environmental Research Letters 192, 286. | Download 2020-04-30
Lawson, A.J., Clinton T. Moore, Thomas R. Rainwater, Frances M. Nilsen, Philip M. Wilkinson, Russell H. Lowers, Louis J. Guillette Jr., K.W. McFadden, and Patrick G.R. Jodice. 2020. Nonlinear patterns in mercury bioaccumulation in American alligators are a function of predicted age. Science of the Total Environment 707:135103. | Download 2020-03-31
Lamb, J.S., Y.G. Satgé, R.A. Streker, and P.G.R. Jodice. Ecological drivers of Brown Pelican movement patterns, health, and reproductive success in the Gulf of Mexico. U.S. Dept. of the Interior, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, New Orleans, LA. OCS Study BOEM-2020-036. 232 pp. | Download 2020-07-31
Lamb, J.S., Y.G. Satgé, P.G.R. Jodice. 2020. Seasonal variation in environmental and behavioral drivers of annual-cycle habitat selection in a nearshore seabird. Diversity and Distributions. | Download 2019-12-31
Lamb, J.S., Y.G. Satge, P.G.R. Jodice. 2017. Influence of density-dependent competition on foraging and migratory behavior of a subtropical colonial seabird. Ecology and Evolution 2017;00:1–13. | Publisher Website 2017-07-31
Lamb, J.S., Y.G. Satge, P.G.R. Jodice. 2017. Diet composition and provisioning rates of nestlings determine reproductive success in a subtropical seabird. Marine Ecology Progress Series 581:149-164. 2017-09-30
Lamb, J.S., Y.G. Satge, C.V. Fiorello, P.G.R. Jodice. 2016. Behavioral and reproductive effects of bird-borne data logger attachment on Brown Pelicans on three temporal scales. Journal of Ornithology. doi:10.1007/s10336-016-1418-3 2016-12-31
Lamb, J.S., K.M. O’Reilly, P.G.R. Jodice. 2016. Physical condition and stress levels during early development reflect feeding rates and predict pre- and post-fledging survival in a nearshore seabird. Conservation Physiology 4 (1): cow060. doi: 10.1093/conphys/cow060 2016-12-31
Lamb, J.S., D.J. Newstead, L.M. Koczur, B.M. Ballard, C.M. Green, P.G.R. Jodice. 2018. A bridge between oceans: Overland migration of marine birds in a wind energy corridor. Journal Avian Biology e01474 doi: 10.1111/jav.01474 2017-11-30
Lamb, J.S., C.V. Fiorello, Y.G. Satge, K. Mills-Parker, M. Ziccardi, P.G.R. Jodice. 2018. Movement patterns of California brown pelicans following oiling and rehabilitation. Marine Pollution Bulletin 131:22-31 2018-04-30
K. McFadden, T. Lacher and G. Worthy. 2006. Photogrammetric estimates of size and mass in Hawaiian monk seals (Monachus schauinslandi) Aquatic Mammals 32:31-40 | Download 2006-12-31
K. McFadden, S. Wade, E. Dubovi, and M. Gompper. 2005. A serology and fecal parasitologic survey of the critically endangered pygmy raccoon (Procyon pygmaeus). Journal of Wildlife Diseases 41:615-617 | Download 2005-12-31
K. McFadden, M. Gompper, R. Medellín and R. Sambrotto. 2006. Feeding habits of endangered pygmy raccoon (Procyon pygmaeus) based on stable isotopes and fecal analyses. Journal of Mammalogy 87:501-509 | Download 2006-12-31
K. McFadden, M. Gompper, D. Valenzuela, and J.C. Morales. 2008. Evolutionary history of the critically endangered Cozumel dwarf carnivores inferred from mitochondrial DNA analyses. Journal of Zoology 276:176-186 | Download 2008-12-31
K. McFadden, D. Vasco, A. Cuaron, D. Valenzuela and M. Gompper. 2009. Conservation and population assessment of the endangered dwarf carnivores from Cozumel Island. Biodiversity and Conservation 19:419-502. | Download 2009-12-31
K. McFadden and S. Meiri. Dwarfism in Insular Carnivores: A Case Study of the Pygmy Raccoon. Journal of Zoology 2013-01-31
K. McFadden and C. Barnes. 2009. The implementation of an ecosystem approach to management in a federal government agency. Marine Policy 33:156-163. | Download 2009-12-31
E. Sterling, K. McFadden, K. Holmes, E. B. Vintinner, F. Arengo, E. Naro-Maciel. Accepted. Ecology and Conservation of Marine Turtles in a Central Pacific Foraging Ground. Chelonian Conservation and Biology 2013-01-31
E. Naro-Maciel, K. Holmes, P. Ersts, N. Bynum, K. McFadden, and E. Sterling. 2009. Globally endangered sea turtles of the Palmyra Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. Network of Conservation and Education Practitioners Module. 2009-12-31
C. Barnes and K. McFadden. 2008. Marine ecosystem approaches to management: challenges and lessons in the United States. Marine Policy 32: 387-392 | Download 2008-12-31
A. Cuaron, M. M. Morales, K. McFadden, M. Gompper and D. Valenzuela. 2004. The status of dwarf carnivores on Cozumel Island. Biodiversity and Conservation 13:317-331 | Download 2004-12-31
A. Cuaron, D. Valenzuela, D. Garcia-Vasco, M. Copa, S. Bautista, H. Mena, D. Martinez-Godinez, C. Gonzalez-Baca, L. Borquez, L. Barraza, K. McFadden and M. Gompper. 2009. Conservation of the endemic dwarf carnivores of Cozumel Island, Mexico. Small Carnivore Conservation 41: 15-21. | Download 2009-12-31
. McFadden, K., A. Gomez, E. Sterling and E.Naro-Maciel. 2014. Potential Impacts of Historical Disturbance on Green Turtle Health in the Unique & Protected Marine Ecosystem of Palmyra Atoll (Central Pacific). Marine Pollution Bulletin 89:160-167 2014-10-31
Name Degree Program Status Completion Date
Azad, Shefali Master's Completed Program 2016-05-20
Sullivan, Susan Master's Completed Program 2015-12-31
Lawson, Abby PhD Completed Program 2019-05-15
Hooker, Katie Master's Completed Program 2014-05-15
Presentations Presentation Date
UPDATE ON THE BIOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ARCHIVAL OF SEA TURTLE TISSUES (BEMAST) PROJECT: SAMPLE ARCHIVE AND CONTAMINANT ANALYSIS Jennifer M. Keller 1 George H. Balazs 2 Marc R. Rice 4 Thierry M. Work 5 Eleanor Sterling 6 Felicity Arengo 6 Kate McFadden 7 Frannie Nilsen3 Brenda Jensen 3 Rebecca S. Pugh 1 Paul R. Becker 1 2014-04-12
Sullivan, S., W. Bridges, K.W. McFadden, J. Mayer, P.G.R. Jodice. G. Yarrow. 2015. Prevalence of Six Viral and Bacterial Diseases in Wild Hogs in South Carolina (2007-2014). The Wildlife Society Annual Meeting. Winnipeg, Manitoba. 2015-10-20
Moore, C. T. 2015. ‘Sustainability’ in the eyes of a decision analyst: three case studies in conservation. 2015 Sustainability Science Symposium at UGA, 23 January 2015, Athens, GA 2015-01-23
Lawson, A.J., and K.W. McFadden. 2014. Optimizing survey designs for complex habitat: evaluating seasonal variation of alligator abundance estimates derived from nightlight surveys in South Carolina. Crocodile Specialist Group Working Meeting, Lake Charles, Louisiana, USA. 2014-05-29
Lawson, A.J., and K.W. McFadden. 2014. Optimizing Alligator Nightlight Survey Designs for Complex Habitat: Evaluating Seasonal Variation in Abundance and Detectability in South Carolina. The Wildlife Society Annual Conference, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Poster Presentation. 2014-10-27
Lawson, A.J., and K.W. McFadden. 2013. South Carolina alligator adaptive management strategies: population dynamics, habitat utilization, and conservation threats. U.S. Geological Survey South Carolina Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Coordinating Committee Meeting, Clemson, South Carolina. 2013-05-14
Lawson, A.J., and K.W. McFadden. 2013. Influence of habitat on American Alligator densities in coastal South Carolina derived from nightlight survey data (1971-2012). The Wildlife Society Annual Conference, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Poster presentation. 2013-10-07
Lawson, A.J., K.W. McFadden, P.G.R. Jodice. 2015. Does harvest pressure influence body size class composition in American alligator populations? The Wildlife Society Annual Meeting. Winnipeg, Manitoba. 2015-10-20
Lawson, A. J., C. T. Moore, P. G. R. Jodice, and K. W. McFadden. 2016. Optimizing American alligator population survey design to improve management decision-making. The Wildlife Society 23rd Annual Conference, 15-19 October 2016, Raleigh, NC. 2016-10-19
Lamb, J., and P. Jodice. 2015. Sex, death, and oil: Conservation implications of individual and geographic variation in Brown Pelican movement patterns. 2nd World Seabird Conference, Cape Town, South Africa. 2015-10-12
Lamb, J., Y. Satge, P.G.R. Jodice. 2015. Variation in Brown Pelican energy provisioning rates across a range of juvenile forage fish availability. Waterbird Society Annual Meeting, Bar Harbor, Maine. 2015-08-15
Lamb, J.*, P.G.R. Jodice. 2015. Should I stay or should I go? Physiology and geography predict individual migratory strategies in the brown pelican. Pacific Seabird Group Annual Meeting, San Jose, California. 2015-02-28
Lamb, J.*, P.G.R. Jodice. 2014. Year-round spatial overlap between energy infrastructure and brown pelican movements in the Gulf of Mexico. International Marine Conservation Congress, Glasgow, Scotland [Poster]. 2014-08-15
Lamb, J.*, P.G.R. Jodice. 2014. Gradients in breeding Brown Pelican forging radius, chick condition, and diet across the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Pacific Seabird Group Annual Meeting, Juneau, Alaska. 2014-02-22
Lamb, J.*, P.G.R. Jodice. 2014. Comparative performance of cellular and satellite transmitters deployed on Brown pelicans in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Pacific Seabird Group Annual Meeting, Juneau, Alaska. 2014-02-22
Lamb, J.*, K. O’Reilly, P.G.R. Jodice. 2016. Longterm physiological responses of nestling seabirds to variation in prey availability and nest conditions. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, Portland, Maine. 2016-01-05
Lamb, J.*, D. Newstead, B. Ballard, L. Koczur, P.G.R. Jodice, M.C. Green. 2014. A bridge between oceans: evidence for use of the Tehuantepec Isthmus by waterbirds during dispersal and migration. Waterbird Society Annual Meeting, La Paz, Mexico. 2014-11-06
Keck, K.R. and McFadden, K.W.M. 2014. Loss of Foundation Tree Species: Consequences for Small Mammals in Forest Ecosystems. Society for Conservation Biology Conference, Missoula, MT. 2014-07-15
Keck, K. R., K. W. McFadden. 2013. Loss of Foundation Tree Species: Consequences for Small Mammal Assemblages in Oak Forests. 20th Annual Meeting, The Wildlife Society, Milwaukee, WI, 5-10 October, 2013. 2013-10-07
Green Sea Turtles and Marine Ecosystem Health: A Case Study From Palmyra Atoll. 2013. K. McFadden and E. Naro-Maciel. International Congress for Conservation Biology, Baltimore, Maryland. 2013-07-22
Effects of Habitat on Small Mammal Diversity and Abundance in Nyungwe National Park, Rwanda. M. Majyambere and K. McFadden. 2013. International Congress for Conservation Biology, Baltimore, Maryland. 2013-07-22
Crawford, T. G., and C. T. Moore. 2014. Toward an integrated population model for support of American alligator harvest decision making. 68th Annual Conference of the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, 19-22 October 2014, Destin, FL. 2014-10-22
Crawford, T. G., and C. T. Moore. 2014. Statewide adaptive management of public alligator harvests using structured decision making and integrated population modeling. 23rd Working Meeting of the IUCN-SSC Crocodile Specialist Group, 26-30 May 2014, Lake Charles, LA. 2014-05-26
Crawford, T. G., and C. T. Moore. 2013. Population modeling and development of decision support tools for public alligator harvest. Georgia Chapter of The Wildlife Society. 5-6 September 2013, Athens, GA. 2013-09-06
Crawford, T. G., C. T. Moore, G. Balkcom, A. M. Brunell, T. Brunjes, J. Butfiloski, C. Carter, H. Dutton, N. Heynen, C. Nix, R. Tharp, G. Waters, and A. Woodward. 2015. Agency approaches to management of public alligator harvest programs in the species' eastern range. Annual Meeting of the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, 1-4 November 2015, Asheville, NC. 2015-11-03
Technical Publications Publication Date
K. McFadden, E. Sterling, K. Holmes and E. Naro-Maciel. 2008. The status of green sea turtles at Palmyra Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. US Fish & Wildlife Report 2008-10-31
C. Barnes, L. Bozzi and K. McFadden. 2005. Exploring an Ecosystem Approach to Management. Ecosystem Research Program, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Ecosystem Goal Team 2005-02-28
A. Veit and K McFadden. 1998. The status of the Hawaiian monk seal at Kure Atoll-1998. Southwestern National Marine Fisheries Annual Report, NOAA 1998-09-30