UC Davis Wildlife and Fish Ranked No. 1 in Nation

Department faculty recognized for top scholarly performance

By Kat Kerlin

Faculty in the UC Davis Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology were recently ranked No. 1 in the nation for research productivity and impact.

Brian Todd of the UC Davis Department of Willdife, Fish and Conservation Biology found that turtles at Sequoia National Park still carry agricultural pesticides from past decades in their bodies. Credit: Brian Todd/UC Davis

Brian Todd of the UC Davis Department of Willdife, Fish and Conservation Biology found that turtles at Sequoia National Park still carry agricultural pesticides from past decades in their bodies. Credit: Brian Todd/UC Davis

The distinction came from an analysis of 33 research-extensive universities in the United States belonging to the National Association of University Fisheries and Wildlife Programs.

The study, conducted by Robert Swihart and colleagues at Purdue University was published in May 2016 in the journal PLOS ONE. It provides the first and most comprehensive performance benchmark for researchers in the field of wildlife and fisheries.

The department ranked first among a prestigious group of comparable universities, including Cornell, Purdue, North Carolina State, Colorado State, University of Wisconsin, Texas A&M, and others.

Faculty in the UC Davis Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology have earned notoriety for their research in everything from birds and fish to sharks, turtles and zebras.

“This recognition further reinforces UC Davis’ leading role as a premier institution for research and education in ecology and environmental sciences,” said department chair John Eadie, a professor and avian ecologist. “My hope is that this will encourage the next generation of students to come to UC Davis to share and build on this richness of expertise.”

Nine prolific professors

The study examined eight metrics of scholarly output for 437 tenure-track faculty, including the number of scientific publications produced and scientific impact as measured by the number of times papers had been cited.

Nine faculty were considered in the analysis, including Professors Louis Botsford, Tim Caro, John Eadie, Nann Fangue, Doug Kelt, Peter Moyle, Andrea Townsend, Brian Todd and Dirk Van Vuren.

The study notes that UC Davis, in addition to having the best median ranking across the eight metrics, scored consistently high in all performance measures.

UC Davis is ranked as No. 1 in the U.S. in faculty papers written in the field of ecology and the environment, No. 2 in the world in agriculture and forestry (QS World University Rankings 2016), No. 3 in the U.S. in environment/ecology (U.S. News & World Report’s “2016 Best Global Universities”), and No. 3 in the nation for best graduate schools in the field of ecology and evolutionary biology (U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Graduate Schools 2015).

Kat Kerlin writes about the environment for UC Davis Strategic Communications. Follow her at @UCDavis_Kerlin

 

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