CHAMPAIGN – Eric Schauber, an animal ecologist currently at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, has been selected as the next director of the Prairie Research Institute’s Illinois Natural History Survey. Schauber will begin his appointment on July 1, 2018.
“I am excited to build and work within a truly integrated research program aimed at describing and understanding biological communities in Illinois and beyond,” said Schauber. "This information is crucial if we are to document, predict, and manage changes in the natural world that sustains us and is enjoyed by so many people."
At Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Schauber is a wildlife ecologist in the Cooperative Wildlife Research Laboratory and is a professor and the director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Zoology. He earned a PhD in ecology from the University of Connecticut, a master’s degree in wildlife science from Oregon State University, and a bachelor’s degree in wildlife biology from the University of Massachusetts.
Schauber's research tackles a broad suite of questions mainly centered around populations of mammals. Topics range from documenting factors that influence where foxes, coyotes, and other carnivores are found across southern Illinois to understanding how marsh rice rats move between wetlands. One main focus of Schauber’s research has been studying contacts within and between social groups of white-tailed deer, and using that information to understand and manage how diseases spread in the deer population.
“The research and applied science activities of the Illinois Natural History Survey are a tremendous asset to the people and environment of Illinois, and Dr. Schauber’s leadership will ensure that impact continues,” said PRI executive director Mark Ryan.
About the Illinois Natural History Survey
One of the divisions of the University of Illinois’ Prairie Research Institute, the Illinois Natural History Survey has been the guardian and recorder of the biological resources of Illinois since 1858. Its more than 200 scientists and technicians investigate the diversity, life histories, and ecology of the plants and animals of the state; publish research results so those resources can be managed wisely; and provide information to the public in order to foster an understanding and appreciation of our natural heritage. For more information, visit inhs.illinois.edu.