Marvin M. F. Lutnesky, Ph.D.

Ph.D., Zoology, University of Hawaii
Masters, Biology, San Diego State University
B.S., Zoology, San Diego State University

Chair, Department of Science and Mathematics
Professor of Biology

Central Academic Building 347B
Office (210) 784-2285

Marvin Lutnesky, Ph.D.


My area of research expertise is in animal behavior and ecology.  I use a variety of animals (mostly aquatic animals) as model systems to study basic problems in sexual selection and risk assessment. My work is quite varied.  It includes such diverse topics as antipredator behavior of water fleas and fishes; environmental sex determination in fishes; female-female competition and male choice in fishes, urban ecology of spiders, and territoriality across animals.  Some of my work is theoretical (e.g. computer modeling), and some of it is empirical (e.g. experimental).  While most of the work is basic, i.e. undertaken to understand how nature works, some of it is applied, or has applied value (e.g. the influence of electrofishing on reproduction in fishes). The common thread that runs through all of my work is "animal sampling," i.e., how animals sample their environment, and how the sampling influences behavior that forms a strategy for survival and reproduction.  The findings often show that behavior is dynamic and based on ecological context.  How ecological context influences animal sampling and the consequent behavior is important for a basic understanding of animals, and for our hopes for recovery programs and for conservation biology.  Please contact me if you think you are interested in the study of animal behavior as influenced by ecology.      

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