marine organism-environment interaction


Corey Clatterbuck is a PhD student in the Joint Doctoral Program in Ecology (JDPE) at UC Davis and San Diego State University. At San Diego State, her advisor is Dr. Rebecca Lewison. After spending most of her life hiking around the Appalachian foothills, Corey moved to the west coast in 2008, which has served to expand her ecological interests. Before starting the JDPE, Corey earned her master’s degree studying the incubation behaviors of seabirds, which fostered her interest in conservation of seabird species.


BA Biology and Anthropology; Transylvania University (2008)

MS Biological Sciences; San Jose State University (2013)

Research Interests

I am broadly interested in the conservation of taxa vulnerable to anthropogenic disturbance, particularly climate change, urbanization, habitat loss, and pollution. I use theory from spatial and behavioral ecology to describe threats to wildlife and explore mechanisms of anthropogenic disturbance. As many seabird species are in decline and vulnerable to disturbance, they are an ideal taxa for studying anthropogenic change.

For my PhD research, I study contaminant patterns in a variety of seabird species. As a part of a collaborative project with researchers at San Jose State University, UC Santa Barbara, and Oregon State University, I track and sample western gulls (Larus occidentalis) at five sites in coastal California and Oregon to compare gull contaminant loads with foraging patterns. I also use targeted and non-targeted techniques in analytical chemistry to examine legacy contaminants in seabirds that nest in the Southern California Bight as well as comprehensive organic contaminant loads from the tissues of three North Pacific albatross species. Worldwide, there are numerous restoration and management efforts with the goal of seabird population recovery. The application of my research will influence conservation efforts that focus not only on recovery, but also prevention of population decline of threatened taxa.


About Corey Clatterbuck