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Carnivore behavioral adaptations needed to give them a future in the Anthropocene, featuring Roland Kays, Ph.D., NC Museum of Natural Sciences, NC State University  
General Event Information
Event Category:
FREE * contact the Venue listed below for ticketing information  
Dates and Times:
February 12, 4:00PM-5:00PM; (Reception at 3:30 across from the lecture hall)
The persistence of wildlife species into the Anthropocene will depend on their ability to survive, and thrive, in an environment much different than what they adapted to through millions of years of evolution. The same human actions driving many species towards extinction (direct hunting, competition for prey, and habitat degradation) also act as strong evolutionary selection today. Given enough time and natural variation, evolution might select animals that can survive with humans, as has been seen in countless fast-breeding microbes. But can carnivores adapt fast enough to avoid extinction? Carnivores typically reproduce slowly, and are considered highly sensitive to human disturbance because they need large areas and their predatory nature gets them into conflict with people. The history of carnivores and people in the 19th & 20th centuries reflect this, with steady declines around the world. However, the last decade has brought remarkable examples from showing that carnivores can rapidly adapt to the realities of the modern era, especially through behavioral evolution. Changes in activity period, habitat use, and use of movement corridors have allowed many species to minimize their interactions with people, while changes in diet have permitted some to thrive in newly created, anthropogenic niches. These cases show the success of carnivore protection programs not only in halting numerical declines, but also in providing the time and natural variation needed for populations to evolve and adapt.
Venue Information
: Room 017, Southwest Forest Science Complex (Building 82), Northern Arizona University  
200 East Pine Knoll Drive  
Zip Code:
United States 
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Presenting Organization
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Ticketing Information