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My name is Ryan Wagner. I am a wildlife biologist, photographer, and science journalist. Currently, I am pursuing a Ph.D. at Washington State University advised by Dr. Jonah Piovia-Scott. I earned my B.S. in Wildlife Biology and Conservation from Ohio University and my M.S. from Ohio State University advised by Dr. Bill Peterman. You can download my CV here [pdf].


My research interests focus on the ecology and conservation of reptiles and amphibians. I have pursued these interests in a number of ways, including studying the impacts of a newly constructed bypass on eastern box turtles, underpass-use by amphibians,  salamander chronic stress, hellbender population status, and snake road mortality. For my master's degree at OSU, I studied a population of common mudpuppy salamanders (Necturus maculosus) impacted by the chemical lampricide TFM. This chemical is used to control the invasive Sea Lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) and is highly toxic to native fish, invertebrate, and amphibian species. I used mark-recapture, eDNA, and population viability analysis to inform best management practices for mudpuppies in the Great Lakes. 


For my Ph.D., I combine field work and statistical modeling to support the conservation and management of remnant Cascades frog (Rana cascadae) populations in northern California’s Lassen Region. I am studying the effects of disease and climate on frog population status. I will be developing and implementing disease treatments, reintroductions, and conservation and management plans for this imperilled frog.

Photography & Journalism

I tell stories about the intimate relationship between humans and the natural environment. These relationships are sometimes symbiotic, other times tenuous. I seek to capture images and write stories that reveal these everyday but often overlooked connections between humans and the world around us. My work has been featured in the Gurdian, Nature, the California Academy of Science's Big Picture Competition, the North American Association of Nature Photographer's Showcase, among others.

Follow me on social media @ryanbwagner

Ryan Wagner
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