Andrea Easter-Pilcher, PhD

Andrea Easter-Pilcher, PhD
Dean, School of Arts and Sciences
Professor, Conservation and Wildlife Ecology, Department of Life Sciences
Phone: (473) 444-4175 ext. 3615


Click here to view complete Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Easter-Pilcher received a BA in Cultural Anthropology from Bowdoin College, Brunswick, ME, a MSc in Wildlife Biology from University of Montana, Missoula, MT, and in 1993 earned a PhD in Conservation Biology with a supporting doctoral field in Statistics from Montana State University, Bozeman, MT. In 1995, Dr. Easter-Pilcher was awarded a Postdoctoral Research Appointment in Wildlife Ecology from Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN.

Dr. Easter-Pilcher is currently a faculty member at St. George’s University, Grenada. Prior to her appointment at St. George’s University, Dr. Easter-Pilcher held the position of Professor of Wildlife and Conservation Ecology, Department of Environmental Sciences, University ofMontana-Western (UMW) where she chaired the department for two years.

While at UMW, Dr. Easter-Pilcher developed a very successful wildlife biology and conservation ecology program for undergraduate students. Dr. Easter-Pilcher developed several new courses to enhance the new wildlife biology and conservation ecology program including a field-based wildlife biology course, a conservation biology course with a field component, a natural resource issues course, and a general wildlife course for non-science majors. Dr. Easter-Pilcher worked closely with UMW mathematicians and was able to build into the wildlife biology and conservation ecology curriculum, math courses such as stochastic modeling and deterministic modeling.

Dr. Easter-Pilcher has significant field expertise in study design, sampling of ecological systems and multivariate ecological data analysis and these methodologies are key components of her upper level courses.

Dr. Easter-Pilcher is an advocate of student internships and undergraduate research and has co-authored several publications with her undergraduate students in refereed scientific journals. In addition, several of her students have presented their research at professional meetings.

Dr. Easter-Pilcher’s past and current professional research has specifically focused upon restoring and maintaining biodiversity (species and ecosystems), habitat and population ecology, and management of both threatened and non-threatened vertebrate species (including grizzly bears in Montana, beavers in Montana and Russia, Adelie penguins in Antarctica, and species impacted by white-tailed deer in Indiana). She has been effective at obtaining research grants for an array of conservation ecology projects (in addition to the FIPSE grant mentioned below) including funding for a project to assess ecosystem changes effected by the re-introduction of beavers into the 10,000 hectare Volga-Kama National Nature Preserve in Tatarstan, Russia. Dr. Easter-Pilcher has since been invited by her Russian colleagues to collaborate on a population ecology study of white-tailed eagles (Red Data Book listed), some of which reside in the Volga-Kama National Nature Preserve. Dr. Easter-Pilcher has recently initiated a long-term collaborative research project in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) with a park biologist and other colleagues. They are monitoring the return of beavers to the northern range of YNP and hope to delineate the subsequent changes in biodiversity within riparian ecosystems across that landscape. The return of beavers to the riparian ecosystems in YNP seems to be driven by the return of wolves (reintroduced in 1995) and the changes in elk and bison browsing and grazing patterns that have ensued post reintroduction of that top predator.

Dr. Easter-Pilcher has scientific publications in several peer-reviewed scientific journals and books including: BioScience, Folia Zoologica: International Journal of Vertebrate Zoology, Canadian Journal of Zoology, The Wildlife Society Bulletin, The International Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR): Antarctic Biology in a Global Context; Beaver Protection, Management, and Utilization in Europe and North America; and Proceedings of the First Euro-American Beaver Congress.

Dr. Easter-Pilcher has been a reviewer for BioScience, Society of Conservation Biology and the United States Department of Agriculture Conservation Project (as regional species expert), Journal of Wildlife Management, and the Journal of Arid Environments among others.

Areas of Interest
Conservation and Wildlife Ecology, Restoration and Maintenance of Biodiversity, Ecology of Rare Vertebrate Species, Statistical Methodology and Quantitative Analytical Techniques Related to Ecological Research, Experiential Teaching and Learning
Selected Publications

Patterson, D.L., A.L. Easter-Pilcher, and W.R. Fraser. 2003. The Effects of Human Activity on Long-Term Changes in Adelie Penguin Populations at Palmer Station, Antarctica. in A.H.L. Huiskes, W.W.C. Gieskes, J. Rozemaet et al. The International Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR): Antarctic Biology in a Global Context, Leiden, The Netherlands, Buckhuys Publishers: 301-307.

Gorshkov, Y.A., D.Y. Gorshkov, A.L. Easter-Pilcher (PI), B.K. Pilcher. 2002. First results of beaver (Castor fiber) reintroduction in the Volga-Kama National Nature Zapovednik (Russia). Folia Zoologica: International Journal of Vertebrate Zoology (Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic) 51:67-74.

Gorshkov, Y.A., A.L. Easter-Pilcher (PI), B.K. Pilcher, and D. Gorshkov. 1999. Ecological restorationby harnessing the work of beavers. In P.E. Busher ad R.M. Dziecidowski, eds, Beaver Protection, Management, and Utilization in Europe and North America.

Swihart, R.K., H.P. Weeks, Jr., A.L. Easter-Pilcher (Co-PI), and G.R. Parker. 1998. Nutritional condition and fertility of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) from areas with contrasting histories of hunting. Canadian Journal of Zoology 76:1932-1941.

Easter-Pilcher, A.L. 1996. Implementing the Endangered Species Act: Selecting species to list as endangered or threatened. BioScience 46(5): 1-26.

Selected Projects

Roberts, S. and A.L. Easter-Pilcher (co-authors). 2001. Facilitating Learning Through Immersion Scheduling. Fund for Improvement of Post-Secondary Education (FIPSE) and University of Montana-Western

Easter-Pilcher A.L. 1997-1998. Alternatives for wetland restoration: Reintroduction of a native species to the Volga-Kama National Preserve in Kazan, Russia. Montana Space Grant Consortium (NASA) Charles and Anne Morrow Lindbergh Foundation

Easter-Pilcher, A.L. and S. Roberts (co-authors). 1996. Chemistry and biology of the Beaverhead River in the Dillon area. SEAMS (Service Learning) Grant

Easter-Pilcher, A.L., G.R. Parker, H.K. Weeks, R.K. Swihart. 1995. Impact of white-tailed deer on forest ecosystems: A landscape perspective. Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), Martin Foundation, National Rifle Association, Northern Indiana States Power

H.K. Weeks, A.L. Easter-Pilcher, R.K. Swihart, G.R. Parker. 1995. Avian responses to woodland habitats differentially impacted by deer. IDNR Nongame and Endangered Wildlife Program