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Blake Massey

Graduate Student (PhD)

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Blake Massey is currently a PhD student in the Environmental Conservation Department at the University of Massachusetts. Blake earned his MS degree in Wildlife Conservation from the University of Massachusetts in 2005 and his BA in Biology from Vanderbilt University in 1999.

Blake’s dissertation focuses on the movement ecology of bald eagles in relation to wind energy facilities. Wind energy has significant overall environmental benefits compared to most fossil fuel based technologies, but failure to properly assess potential ecological effects may result in unexpected outcomes and intolerable mortality levels for eagle populations. Current methods to predict wind facilities’ effects prior to construction have been limited because of knowledge gaps in bald eagle ecology, including breeding territory size, resource selection, and behavioral adaptations to wind turbines. Blake’s research will address these uncertainties by developing a spatially-explicit, individual-based model using GPS telemetry data and GIS datalayers to model and simulate the underlying behavioral mechanisms breeding eagles are most likely to employ when navigating their landscape. Support for Blake’s research is provided by a National Science Foundation Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) fellowship in Offshore Wind Energy Engineering, Environmental Science, and Policy.

For more information, please contact:
Dr. Kevin McGarigal
Department of Environmental Conservation
University of Massachusetts
304 Holdsworth Natural Resources Center
Box 34210, Amherst, MA 01003
Fax: (413) 545-4358; Phone: (413) 577-0655
Email: mcgarigalk@eco.umass.edu

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