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Catherine Lindell

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Catherine Lindell is an Associate Professor in the Integrative Biology Department at Michigan State University with a joint appointment at the Center for Global Change and Earth Observations. Her work combines theoretical and applied approaches to the study of the behavior and ecology of birds and the roles of birds in the functioning of ecosystems. One line of research investigates patterns of bird activity and interspecific interactions in agricultural systems and how this activity and interactions influence ecological functions and community structure. Another research objective is to determine how to make managed landscapes more hospitable for species that contribute significant ecosystem services. A second line of research investigates bird interactions with abiotic and biotic components of tropical forest restoration systems. Birds are important mediators of various ecosystem processes that facilitate restoration, including seed dispersal, pollination, and consumption of herbivorous insects. Thus, understanding why some restoration strategies attract more birds than others, and the mechanisms underlying these patterns, will help guide future restoration efforts. Dr. Lindell collaborates with social scientists to understand economic and social components of ecological functions performed by birds in managed ecosystems. She earned her B.A. from Yale in American Studies and a Ph.D. from Harvard in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology.

Research areas: Managed ecosystems, tropical biology, birds, agriculture, restoration

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