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Organismal and Environmental Biology at CNU

Julie Taylor

Interests and Contact Info

Evolutionary biology, Ecology, Paleoecology, Mass extinctions, Biodiversity


I am currently a Junior at Christopher Newport University working on my Bachelor's degree in Organismal Biology. I started working in the Lattanzio lab as a freshman research assistant. While helping in Arizona during the summer of 2015, I was very interested in the correlation between dominance and boldness in the lizards we study. That led to my first undergraduate publication investigating how differences in dominance and boldness in individuals shapes species interactions and population dynamics in the wild. I returned to Arizona in the summer of 2016 to conduct another independent project. For this study, I am interested in how populations of the same species that exploit different microhabitats differed in their performance. In addition, I am interested in how that performance affects their survival in their natural environment. I was fortunate to be able to present my findings on my first project in July 2016 at the Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists and will be presenting my current study at the January 2017 Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology conference.

In the near future, I hope to pursue a Master's degree and eventually a Ph.D. in the field of Biology. For my Master's I would like to investigate primitive Earth and the species that once dominated it. Specifically, my interests include biodiversity preceding and following mass extinction events, the evolution of new body plans following the famous "Cambrian Explosion," and general paleoecology.


Julie at the 2016 JMIH Conference!

A sonoran racer at the field site!


Upper Salt River, E of Phoenix.