My work focuses on understanding the mechanisms that generate and maintain species diversity in a changing world. I specialize in the application of genomic tools to address basic and applied evolutionary and ecological questions, specifically related to migratory animals such as: 1) How are genetically distinct populations connected across the annual cycle? 2) What is the role of migration in generating species diversity? And 3) Which populations will have to adapt most to keep pace with climate change? The methods I use are integrative, combining field-based behavioral studies, population genetics/genomics, and GIS-based ecological modeling. My main focus is co-directing the Bird Genoscape Project, a large multi-institutional effort to harness genomic methods for migratory bird conservation.
Alternative Energy and Biodiversity
A U.S. Department of Energy Funded Project to Understand the Demographic Impacts of Solar Energy Sites on Migratory Bird Populations Increased solar energy production is a critical element of efforts…
Ruegg, K. C.; Anderson, E. C.; Paxton, K. L.; Apkenas, V.; Lao, S.; Siegel, R. B.; DeSante, D. F.; Moore, F.; Smith, T. B.
Published Work | 2014 | Molecular Ecology 23(23), 5726–5739permalink
Ruegg, K. C.; Anderson, E. C.; Boone, J.; Pouls, J.; Smith, T. B.
Published Work | 2014 | Molecular Ecology 23(19), 4757–4769permalink
Novel statistical methods for integrating genetic and stable isotope data to infer individual-level migratory connectivity
Rundel, C. W.; Wunder, M. B.; Alvarado, A. H.; Ruegg, K. C.; Harrigan, R.; Schuh, A.; Kelly, J. F.; Siegal, R. B.; DeSante, D. F.; Smith, T. B.; Novembre, J.
Published Work | 2013 | Molecular Ecology 22(16), 4163–4176permalink
Divergence in mating signals correlates with ecological variation in the migratory songbird, Swainson’s thrush (Catharus ustulatus)
Ruegg, K.; Slabbekorn, H.; Clegg, S.; Smith, T. B.
Published Work | 2006 | Molecular Ecology 15(11), 1487–1494permalink
Kelly, J.; Ruegg, K.; Smith, T. B.
Published Work | 2005 | Ecological Applications 15(5), 1487–1494permalink
Molecular genetic approaches to linking breeding and overwintering areas in five neotropical migrant passerines
Smith, T. B.; Clegg, S. M.; Kimura, M.; Ruegg, K.; Milá, B.; Lovette, I.
Published Work | 2005 | Birds of Two Worlds: The Ecology and Evolution of Migration 223-231permalink
Not as the crow flies: a historical explanation for circuitous migration in Swainson’s thrush (Catharus ustulatus)
Ruegg, K.; Smith, T. B.
Published Work | 2002 | Proceedings of the Royal Society, London 269(1498), 1375–1381permalink