Graduate Students

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Emily Urquidi

I have been in the BREE lab for over a year, and it has been a wonderful experience. During my undergrad, I worked on a project that used community science to study Southern Pacific Rattlesnake (Crotalus oreganus helleri) hunting behavior. For my graduate work I will be studying how urbanization affects how native lizards compete with invasive lizard species. I will be focusing on Western Fence Lizards (Sceloporus occidentalis) and Italian Wall Lizards (Podarcis sicula). I'm excited to see what we find in our study!


Stephanie Ruck

Interests include studying how environmental variables influence organismal behavior, physiology, and evolution. Previous and current experience includes working with federal agencies to collect data on herpetofauna of Southern California to better inform conservation management decisions. For her Master’s thesis, she will be studying the behavioral response of lizards to wildfire cues as well as the selection pressures populations may face from such disturbances. 


Elmer Gutierrez

Elmer was an undergraduate student in our lab and manages our campus coverboard project. He will be joining the lab in the fall (2022) as a grad student. His thesis project is to be determined!

Undergraduate Students


Alexis Gonzalez

Research: Does human disturbance stress out lizards?


Bayley Stevens

Research: The effect of urbanization on the size of male sexual signals in Western Fence Lizards


Joey Guerrero

Research: Fluctuating asymmetry as a measure of stress in disturbed environments in Western Fence Lizards