William and Ingrid Rea Assistant Curator of Bird Conservation
Dr. Chase D. Mendenhall is an ecologist and evolutionary biologist with degrees from the University of Wyoming and Stanford University. Mendenhall’s research emphasizes the role cooperation plays in the natural world to create cells, build bodies, and determine behaviors that challenge traditional narratives of what it means to be an individual, a male, a female, or part of a family or group. Using novel mathematical frameworks, Mendenhall incorporates altruism and cooperation into existing theories of natural selection. His research uses cooperative behavior birds evolve to successfully raise offspring to empirically test hypotheses.
Mendenhall is also an expert on extinctions, especially how they play out differently on islands compared to mainland continents. Some of his research has examined the benefits of colonization and extinctions in different places. For example, bees and birds colonizing a countryside can pollinate crops and eat pests. Conversely, rat, cat and some insect extinctions on oceanic archipelagos rescues rare ecosystems and benefits the people.
- Thomas Robert Malthus penned an essay on population growth in 1798 that mathematically demonstrated the relationship between food and human population. Malthus …
- Darwin once predicted the existence of a pollinator after examining the star-shaped flower of the orchid Angraecum sesquipedale, a flower whose nectar …
- Exclamations like this are common among bird biologists, especially when face-to-face with a Pileated Woodpecker or a ferocious Chickadee. Decades of Jurassic …
- How are birds like dinosaurs? Assistant Curator of Birds, Chase Mendenhall, and Urban Bird Conservation Coordinator, Jonathan Rice, introduce the bird collection …
- by Chase Mendenhall In the wake of a tragedy that took the lives of 11 people in Pittsburgh, we reflect on the …
- by Chase D. Mendenhall The best way to prevent extinctions is to protect wildlife habitats. In a world where only 13% of …
Research Publications 2017 – 2010
Oliveira, G, E Dorfman, N Kramar, CD Mendenhall, and NE Heller (2020) The Anthropocene in natural history museums: A productive lens of engagement. Curator 63 (3): 333-351.
Mendenhall, CD, VG Hayes, JR Margolis, and E Dorfman (2020) Diversifying displays of biological sex and sexual behaviour in a natural history museum. Museum International 72 (1-2): 152-161.
Mendenhall, CD (2020) Countryside biogeography: Conceptualizing where life lives in the Anthropocene. Journal of Biogeography 47 (8): 1846–1848.
Mendenhall, CD and BML Morrison (2020) Hummingbird–plant interactions are more specialized in forest compared to coffee plantations. Diversity 12(4), 126-140.
Crall, JD, J Brokaw, SF Gagliardi, CD Mendenhall, NE Pierce, and SA Combes (2020) Wind drivestemporal variation in pollinator visitation in a fragmented tropical forest. Biology Letters 16 (4): 1-6.
Sekercioglu, CH, CD Mendenhall, F Oviedo Brenes, JJ Horns, PR Ehrlich, and GC Daily (2019) Long-term declines in bird populations in tropical agricultural countryside. PNAS 116 (20):
Mendenhall, CD and AM Wrona (2018) Improving tree cover estimates for fine-scale landscape ecology. Landscape Ecology 33 (10): 1691–1696.
Barnosky, AD, EA Hadly, P Gonzalez, D Ackerly, K Alex, E Biber, J Blois, J Brashares, G Ceballos, E Davis, G Dietl, R Dirzo, H Doremus, J Eronen, M Fortelius, H Greene, J Head, J Hellmann, T
Hickler, S Jackson, M Kemp, P Koch, C Kremen, M Lawing, E Lindsey, C Looy, C Marshall, CD Mendenhall, A Mulch, A Mychaljliw, C Nowak, P Polly, U Ramakrishnan, J Schnitzler, K
Das Shrestha, K Solari, L Stegner, M Stegner, N Stenseth, M Wake, and Z Zhang (2017) Merging paleobiology with conservation biology to guide the future of terrestrial ecosystems. Science 355 (6325): 1-10.
Lichtenberg, EM, CD Mendenhall, and B Brosi (2017) Foraging traits modulate stingless bee community disassembly under forest loss. Journal of Animal Behavior 86 (6): 1404-11416.
Frank, HK, LO Frishkoff, CD Mendenhall, GC Daily, and EA Hadly (2017) Phylogeny, traits and biodiversity of a Neotropical bat assemblage: responses to deforestation are not conserved among close relatives. American Naturalist 90 (2): 200-212.
Frank, HK, CD Mendenhall, S Judson, GC Daily, and EA Hadly (2016) Uppsalagy and Evolution 6 (14): 4898-4909.
Sekercioglu, CH, SR Loarie, F Oviedo Brenes, CD Mendenhall, GC Daily, and PR Ehrlich (2016) Tropical countryside riparian corridors provide critical habitat and connectivity for seed dispersing forest birds in a fragmented landscape. Journal of Ornithology 156 (1): 343-353.
Seppelt, R, M Beckmann, S Ceauşu, AF Cord, K Gerstner, J Gurevitch, S Kambach, S Klotz, CD Mendenhall, HRP Phillips, K Powell, PH Verburg, W Verhagen, M Winter, and T Newbold (2016) Harmonizing biodiversity conservation and productivity in the context of increasing demands on landscapes. BioScience. 66 (10): 890-896.
Karp, DS, CD Mendenhall, E Callaway, LO Frishkoff, PM Kareiva, PR Ehrlich, and GC Daily (2015) Reply to Kirchhoff: Homogenous and mutually exclusive conservation typologies are neither possible nor desirable. PNAS 112 (44): E5906
Karp, DS, CD Mendenhall, E Callaway, LO Frishkoff, PM Kareiva, PR Ehrlich, and GC Daily (2015) Confronting and resolving competing values behind conservation objectives. PNAS 112 (35): 11132–11137.
Reid, JL, CD Mendenhall, RA Zahawi, and KD Holl (2015) Scale‐dependent effects of forest restoration on Neotropical fruit bats. Restoration Ecology 23 (5): 681–689.
Mendenhall, CD, DS Karp, CFJ Meyer, EA Hadly, and GC Daily (2014) Predicting biodiversity change and averting collapse in agricultural landscapes. Nature 509 (7499): 213-217.
Frishkoff, LO, DS Karp, LK M’Gonigle, CD Mendenhall, J Zook, C Kremen, EA Hadly, and GC Daily (2014) Loss of avian phylogenetic diversity in Neotropical agricultural systems. Science 345 (6202): 1343-1346.
Mendenhall, CD, LO Frishkoff, G Santos-Barrera, J Pacheco, E Mesfun, F Mendoza Quijano, PR Ehrlich, G Ceballos, GC Daily, and RM Pringle (2014) Countryside biogeography of Neotropical reptiles and amphibians. Ecology 95 (4): 856-870.
Reid, JL, CD Mendenhall, JA Rosales, RA Zahawi, and KD Holl (2014) Landscape context mediates avian habitat choice in tropical forest restoration. PloS One 9 (3): 1-8.
Belisle, M, CD Mendenhall, F Oviedo Brenes, and T Fukami (2014) Temporal variation in fungal communities associated with tropical hummingbirds and nectarivorous bats. Fungal Ecology 12 (1): 44-51.
Karp, DS, CD Mendenhall, R Figueroa Sandí, N Chaumont, PR Ehrlich, EA Hadly, and GC Daily (2013) Forest bolsters birds, pest control, and coffee yield. Ecology Letters 16 (11): 1339-1347.
Mendenhall, CD, CV Kappel, and PR Ehrlich (2013) Countryside Biogeography. In: Levin S.A. (ed.) Encyclopedia of Biodiversity, second edition, Volume 2, pp. 347-360. Waltham, MA: Academic Press.
Gould, RK, L Pejchar, SG Bothwell, B Brosi, S Wolny, CD Mendenhall, and GC Daily (2013) Forest restoration and parasitoid wasp communities in montane Hawai’i. PLoS One 8 (3): 1-11.
Mendenhall, CD, GC Daily, and PR Ehrlich (2012) Improving estimates of biodiversity loss. Biological Conservation 151 (1): 32-34.
Mendenhall, CD, HM Archer, F Oviedo Brenes, CH Sekercioglu, and RNM Sehgal (2012) Balancing biodiversity with agriculture: land sharing mitigates avian malaria prevalence. Conservation Letters 6 (2013): 125-131.
Mendenhall, CD, CH Sekercioglu, F Oviedo Brenes, PR Ehrlich, and GC Daily (2011) Predictive model for sustaining biodiversity in tropical countryside. PNAS 108 (39): 16313-16316.
Mendenhall, CD, CH Sekercioglu, and F Oviedo Brenes (2010) Using pubic bone distance to distinguish the sex of manakins in the field. Journal of Field Ornithology 81 (1): 49-63.