Wendy Palen

Professor, Ecology of Aquatic Communities

Areas of interest

My research program is broadly defined by the ecology of aquatic communities, currently ranging from alpine amphibian populations of the Pacific Northwest, to the river and lake food webs that support salmon populations from California to Alaska. I rely heavily on field-based experimental manipulations to tease apart the mechanistic underpinnings of ecological patterns, from species physiology to food web interactions. However, I am also fundamentally committed to the growing necessity for understanding the dynamics of individuals, populations, and communities at the broad spatial and temporal scales relevant to the conservation and management of aquatic systems. This kind of applied ecological problem-solving requires tailoring a combination of approaches to each particular question; from lab-based physiological assays, behavioral observations, manipulative field experiments, landscape-scale surveys, paleoecological reconstructions, to the quantitative techniques required to draw all of them together.


  • BA, University of Virginia
  • PhD, University of Washington


Future courses may be subject to change.