Symposia

-All locations are at the Westin La Paloma (Tucson, Arizona) unless otherwise noted-
-Please note all times are listed in Mountain Standard Time (MST)-

-All symposia will be hybrid sessions and available to virtual participants-

SYMPOSIUM I – TRANSFORMING THE DIGITAL FRONTIERS OF MAMMALOGY

  • Date: Saturday, June 18th
  • Time: 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm (MST)
  • Location: Canyon I,III
  • Speakers: Robert Anderson, John Bates, Jocelyn Colella, Noé de la Sancha, Emma Elliott Smith, Stephen Greiman, Jessica Light, and Kelly Speer

The goals of this symposium are to identify and catalyze the next transformative changes in collections-based biodiversity informatics for mammals. Coordinated efforts to achieve greater online availability of high-quality collections-based data are critical for research relevant to major societal issues including zoonotic diseases, invasive and threatened species, and environmental change. The symposium will present provocative ideas, spark conversation, and stimulate new initiatives aimed at realizing the promise of the “Extended Specimen,” a paradigm that emphasizes linkages across many data domains all connected to vouchered material in natural history museum collections. ASM and its members have long played a key role in biodiversity informatics. This includes the development of MaNIS, one of the first online databases to allow a single-query search of multiple natural history museum collections (including georeferenced localities and their uncertainty). Because of this foundation and many ongoing initiatives, mammalian collections again have the potential to play a central role in future advances. Organizers: Robert Anderson, Joseph Cook, Jessica Light, and Eileen Lacey.


SYMPOSIUM II – MAMMAL LIFE HISTORY IN AN ERA OF GLOBAL CHANGE: INSIGHTS FROM NEW TOOLS AND EMERGING DATASETS

  • Date: Sunday June 19th
  • Time: 1:30 to 3:30 pm (MST)
  • Location: Canyon I,III
  • Speakers: Roxanne Beltran, Robert Guralnick, Jeffrey Lane, Bryan McLean, Katarzyna Nowak, and Mafalda Sousa Ferreira

The “Mammal Life History in an Era of Global Change” symposium will highlight new research towards understanding the complex links between core mammalian life history traits and specific dimensions of abiotic environments, including climate, climate variability, and land use change. This interdisciplinary symposium will focus on new research on mammalian life histories; in particular, use of new field and laboratory methods as well as informatics approaches to map the linkages of specific life history traits to the environment. The symposium will highlight recent research projects pioneered by the invited speakers which advance knowledge of how mammal life histories evolve, and which provide critical tests of life history sensitivity in the face of global change. The symposium will engage a variety of meeting attendees who are interested in life history, and will seek to spur meaningful conversations within the ASM community on how to most effectively monitor these phenomena at spatial and taxonomic scales relevant for conservation of mammals. Organizers: Bryan McLean.


SYMPOSIUM III – BIODIVERSITY AND CONSERVATION OF MADREAN PINE-OAK SKY ISLAND MAMMALS IN THE US AND MEXICO

  • Date: Tuesday, June 21st
  • Time: 10:00 to 12:00 pm (MST)
  • Location: Canyon I,III
  • Speakers: Robbie Burger, Jennifer Frey, Melissa Merrick, Gonzalo Pinilla Buitrago, Dakota Rowsey, and Ella Vázquez-Domínguez

This symposium aims to bring together scientists in Mexico and the US to discuss new biogeographic approaches to conservation challenges in Madrean pine-oak sky island biodiversity throughout the region. The Madrean sky islands are an excellent system for testing fundamental hypotheses and practical implications of island biogeography theory. Similarities and differences among the mainland Cordilleras and Madrean archipelago in species composition, habitat, connectivity, climate, latitude, geology, and recent land use history allow for valuable comparative studies that we here aim to spotlight. Studies of the contemporary and historical biogeography of this sky island system are further needed for assessing conservation priorities of the small mammals on these islands. This symposium will: 1) introduce new concepts and tools from biodiversity scaling and species distribution modeling for studying sky island biodiversity, 2) demonstrate the utility of a new Constraint-based model of Dynamic Island Biogeography (CDIB) that applies traits and environmental history to predicting past, present and future distributions of sky island biodiversity, 3) explore biogeographic and population genetic studies of specific subregions and species, and 4) provide a venue for binational discussions and collaborative networking for scientists and conservation practitioners in the US and Mexico. It is our goal that by hosting this symposium in Tucson, Arizona, the nearby shadow of the Madrean sky islands will capture the imagination of ASM 2022 participants, spurring action to understand and conserve these bellwether habitats. Organizers: Robbie Burger, Dakota Rowsey, and Nate Upham.


SYMPOSIUM IV – MAMMAL DIVERSITY IN DYNAMIC LANDSCAPES

  • Date: Tuesday, June 21st
  • Time: 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm (MST)
  • Location: Canyon I,III
  • Speakers: Catherine Badgley, Brooks Kohli, Renan Maestri, Rebecca Rowe, Tara Smiley, and Miriam Zelditch

One of the most striking gradients in mammal diversity today is the concentration of species in topographically complex regions, such as long mountain ranges and large rift valleys. These areas contain most of the hotspots for mammal diversity worldwide (as well as for other well-documented groups, including birds and vascular plants), and contain many small-range endemic mammal species of high conservation concern. Since climate change is occurring faster at high elevations and high latitudes than elsewhere across the world, species in montane regions are experiencing rapid changes to their ecosystems. Thus, understanding the processes that drive the generation and maintenance of diversity in topographically complex landscapes is highly relevant and interdisciplinary, requiring integration of information from mammalogy, biogeography, the fossil record, and earth sciences. This symposium presents diverse perspectives on the ecological and evolutionary processes that underlie the topographic richness gradient. The combination of topics and speakers will feature fundamental biogeographic processes that have shaped mammal diversity on the continents, as well as provide important insights for conservation of mammals in montane regions. Thus, we anticipate it will hold broad relevance and appeal to the ASM membership. The symposium also emphasizes the importance of collaborative research across biological and geological disciplines. Organizers: Catherine Badgley and Rebecca Terry.