ESA Student Section Travel Grant (ESA, Fall 2015): $300

Travel grant to present at the 2015 Ecological Society of America meeting in Baltimore, MD


Graduate Student Domestic Travel Grant (CU-Boulder, Fall 2015): $300

Travel grant to present at the 2015 Ecological Society of America meeting in Baltimore, MD


Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology research grant (CU-Boulder, Spring 2015): $3,300

Departmental grant to attend a science communication workshop with OTS in Costa Rica


Graduate School Dissertation Completion Fellowship (CU-Boulder, Fall 2015): $10,491

Provides full financial support for one semester to assist in the process of completing my doctoral dissertation


Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program team grant (CU-Boulder, Summer 2015): $2,400

Provided stipends for two undergraduate students to complete independent research projects on temperature at WWHFE


Ecological Society of America’s long-range planning grant (ESA, Fall 2014): $4,492

Grant to overhaul the ESA Student Section’s website as a strategy for long-term stability of the section


Ecological Society of America’s long-range planning grant (ESA, Fall 2013): $2,500

Grant to organize 3 student-oriented workshops and to fund excellence awards for members of the ESA Student Section


Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology research grant (CU-Boulder, Spring 2013): $2,000

Grant to collect further morphometric data on the Wog Wog skinks, including mass and tissue samples


United Government of Graduate Students Travel Grant (CU-Boulder, Spring 2013): $300

Travel grant to present at the 2013 Ecological Society of America meeting in Minneapolis, MN


Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology research grant (CU-Boulder, Spring 2012): $1,000

Departmental grant to supplement my research within the Wog Wog Fragmentation Experiment


Graduate Student Travel Grant (CU-Boulder, August 2012): $300

Travel grant to present at the 2012 Ecological Society of America meeting in Portland, OR 


Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program team grant (CU-Boulder, Summer 2012): $2,400

Provided stipends for two undergraduate students to complete independent research projects on the skinks in Wog Wog


National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship Program (Honorable Mention) (2012)


Research Fellowship at the University of Canberra (Univ. of Canberra, February 2012)

Fellowship to provide desk space, lab space, office supplies, and internet access during my time in Australia


Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology research grant (CU-Boulder, Spring 2011): $2,500

Departmental grant to complete a genetics study of the skink populations in the Wog Wog fragmentation experiment


Graduate Student Travel Grant (CU-Boulder, April 2011): $300

Travel grant to present at the 2011 US-International Association for Landscape Ecology Symposium in Portland, OR 


Tuff, Kika, Tuff, T., & Davies, K.F. Fragmentation driven effects of temperature on lizard distribution and abundance: Long term, experimental evidence. Ecological Society of America (Aug. 2015): Baltimore, MD.


Tarsi, Kika, Glidden, C., Sarre, S., Meyers, J., Davies, K. Shrinking Skinks: Lizard body size declines within a long-term forest fragmentation experiment (Wog Wog). Ecological Society of America (Aug. 2013): Minneapolis, MN.


Tarsi, Kika, Glidden, C., Sarre, S., Meyers, J., Davies, K. Shrinking Skinks: Morphological consequences of habitat loss and fragmentation. Wog Wog Symposium for the Office of Environment and Heritage (May 2013): Sydney, Australia.


Tarsi, Kika. How to build your online presence. University of Colorado: Boulder (Oct. 2012): Boulder, CO.


Tarsi, Kika, Davies, K., Sarre, S., Nix, H., and Meyers, J. Divided we stand: Exploring the unexpected POSITIVE effects of habitat fragmentation. Ecological Society of America (Aug. 2012): Portland, OR.


Tarsi, Kika, Davies, K., Sarre, S., and Meyers, J. Divided we stand: exploring the positive effects of habitat fragmentation. Institute of Applied Ecology at the University of Canberra (Feb 2012): Canberra, Australia.


Tarsi, Kika, Davies, K., Sarre, S., and Meyers, J. Fight or Flight: response of Australian skinks to 25 years of experimental habitat fragmentation. Guild of Rocky Mountain Ecologists and Evo. Biologists (Sept 2011): Boulder, CO.


Tarsi, Kika, Davies, K., Sarre, S., Margules, C., and Meyers, J. Divide and Conquer: Exploring skink persistence in a 25-year fragmentation experiment. Ecological Society of America (Aug 2011): Austin, TX.


Tarsi, Kika, Davies, K., Sarre, S., Margules, C., and Meyers, J. Does dispersal drive extinction risk for lizards in a 25-year fragmentation experiment? International Assoc. of Landscape Ecologists (April 2011): Portland, OR.

my cv

I’m a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis with a Bachelors of Science degree in ecology. Currently, I am wrapping up a doctoral degree at the University of Colorado at Boulder, under the guidance of Dr. Kendi Davies.


My work blends theory and field experiments to better understand the mechanisms behind the curious and often unexpected responses of species to habitat fragmentation. I focus specifically on fragmentation-driven changes in the thermal environment and its influence on body size, metabolic ecology, population distributions and dynamics. I am using a common garden skink as a focal species, but my work expands to the entire ecosystem in which they are a part.


As you will see from my CV, my professional training and interests are diverse. I am a scientist, a conservationist, and an educator. I am an award-winning nature photographer, a filmmaker, an electronic music dj, and a global citizen.


University of Colorado at Boulder

Doctor of Philosophy                   

Focus: Ecology and conservation

Major advisor: Dr. Kendi Davies


Washington University in St. Louis 

Bachelor of Arts and Sciences              

Major: Environmental Studies: Biological track

Minor: African and Afro-American Studies


Study Abroad with Duke University          

Organization for Tropical Studies      

South Africa: Ecology and Conservation

education:

professional presentations:

grants and fellowships:


Program Evaluation Assistant at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (2014)

Applied scientific research methods to study and redesign the climate change exhibit at the National Center for Atmospheric Research


Chairman of the Ecological Society of America’s Student Section(2013-2014)

One of the highest, non-faculty political seats in the ESA. I expanded the section and our role in the society via outreach, networking and training opportunities, and media that engaged and inspired members (membership ~600). Successfully lobbied in D.C. to secure permanent funding that met more than 100% of the section’s financial needs.


        Events at the 2014 ESA annual meeting:

        Organizer:

  1. How to Get the Most out of ESA’s 2014 Annual Meeting: An Orientation for Student Attendees

        Presenter:

  1. IGNITE: Sections and ESA Awards: Meet, Learn, and Connect with the ESA Sections! (Part 1 of 2)

        Co-organizer:

  1. Evening of Art and Music

  2. 2014 Student Mixer & Student Night Out

  3. Exploring Diverse Career Pathways in Ecology

  4. Exploring Current Funding Opportunities for Students


“Core Team Member” of the Earth Stewardship Initiative (2014)

I collaborated with Yale, professional societies, and NGOs to deploy an installation showcasing to the public how ecology can help solve societal problems. The demonstration included art, education, experiments and outreach.


Vice-Chairman of the Ecological Society of America’s Student Section (2012-2013)

Assisting in the development of mentoring opportunities, workshops and awards for student and early-career ecologists. Completed a one-year apprenticeship before becoming Chair of the section in 2014.


Coordinator of a Wog Wog-based Research Program for Undergraduates (2011-2014)

Organizing opportunities for American and Australian undergraduates to come with us to the Wog Wog site and gain experience and training in field research (3 participants to date)


Social Chair for the United Government of Graduate Students at CU-Boulder (2011-2013)

Planning, coordinating, and implementing social activities that unite graduate students from all CU departments


Creator/moderator of an annual “Principles of Design” workshop (2011, 2012)

Workshop for EBIO graduate students on the fundamentals of visual design, including using color and layouts effectively


Chair of the Computer Committee at CU-Boulder (2010-2011)

Committee charged with managing and offering computational resources for graduate students in the EBIO department

awards:


Principles of Ecology at the University of Colorado, Boulder(Fall 2013)

Teaching Assistant

Developed and taught lectures for two 3-hour labs each week, covering basic ecological concepts and field methods


Biometry (Biological statistics) at the University of Colorado, Boulder (Fall 2012)

Teaching Assistant

Helped administer a course on applied statistics for biological research. Assisted with lectures and lab development.


General Biology Lab at the University of Colorado, Boulder (2010-2011, Fall 2014)

Teaching Assistant

Developed and taught lectures for two 3-hour labs each week, covering basic biological concepts and principles


General Biology: A Human Approach at the University of Colorado, Boulder (Spring 2015)

Teaching Assistant

Biology course for non-majors. Developed and taught lectures for three 2-hour labs each week, covering broad biological concepts


Course instructor for Science Discovery (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015)

Developed and led seven different experiment-driven, science-oriented summer courses for 4-13 year old students:

“Hands-on Herpetology”; “Life In Ponds and Streams”; “Introduction to Nature Photography”; “Introduction to Digital Photography”; “Junior Science Explorers: Rainforests”; “Junior Science Explorers: Oceans”; “Critters of Boulder Creek.”





teaching positions:


Tuff, K.T., Glidden, C., Davies, K.F., Melbourne, B.A., Meyers, J.A., Sarre, S.D. (in review). Shrinking skinks: lizard body size declines in a long-term forest fragmentation experiment.


Tuff, K.T., Tuff, T. & Davies, K.F. (pre-submission accepted). On taking a thermal approach to fragmentation research.


King, A., Austin, M., Cunningham, S., Davies, K.F., Hardy, C., Melbourne, B.A., Nichols, N., Tuff, K.T. (in revision). Increased growth of eucalypt forest patches in a large-scale fragmentation experiment.


Davies, K.F., Cunningham, S.A., Austin, M., Evans, M.J., Hicks, A., King, A.J., Lawrence, J.F., Mantle, B., Margules, C.R., McClenahan, J.L., Tuff, K.T., and Melbourne, B.A. (in prep). A mass effect drives homogenization and determinism of beetle communities as they reassemble in experimental fragments.


Tarsi, K. & Tuff, T. Introduction to Population Demographics (2012). Nature Education Knowledge 3(11): 3.

Just passed 43,000 views! [Click HERE to read the article]

peer-reviewed publications

Boulder, CO

2010-present




St. Louis, MO

2003-2007




South Africa

Fall 2005

service and outreach:


North American Nature Photography Association’s College Photography Scholarship (Spring 2015)

One of 12 selected to attend this rigorous training program in nature photography and film. We learned from and collaborate with some of the world’s greatest nature photographers. [Click HERE to see the video we created for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service]


Ecological Society of America’s Eco-Vision Competition (2013): [Morphometric wave]

Ecological Society of America’s Eco-Vision Competition (2014): [Summer reflected in a dragonfly's wing]



Wog Wog Habitat Fragmentation Experiment in New South Wales, Australia (2010-2015)

Project manager

Helped manage this $1.6 million, 30-year forest fragmentation experiment in southeastern Australia for 5 years during my PhD. I also secured an additional 8 research grants, 5 travel grants, and 2 fellowships. Coordinated the continued field sampling of the experiment: organized volunteers, collaborated with Australian academic and governmental organizations, managed field supplies and equipment.


Americorps VISTA position with Plan It Green in Eureka, CA (2008-2009)                                                                                    

Capacity-builder                                                                                                   

Helped found, establish, and manage Plan It Green, an organization dedicated to sustainable urban planning. Performed all tasks, including budgets, fundraising, and marketing; developed an annual conference (~500 attendees), Green Business lunch series, and a handbook on environmentally friendly practices in the hotel industry.

organization management: