Project title: Identifying causes of population decline
Mentors: Christine Gardiner and Graham Forrester
Abstract: Wildlife populations worldwide have largely been in decline for the past few decades. A popularly accepted theory behind these declines is habitat loss. However, only correlational evidence backs the claims of habitat loss being the main cause of populations decline. Our study took an experimental approach to test this theory. We repeated refuge and population manipulation experiments of the Coryphopterus glaucofraenum done in the 1990s. Comparison of the collected data over the years 2000, 2015, and 2016 reveals increased predation is a possible additional key factor to goby population decline along with habitat loss.