Joseph K. Bump

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Joseph K. Bump

Assistant Professor of Animal Ecology & Conservation, School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science

Faculty Advisor to the Michigan Tech Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society

  • PhD, Forest Science, Michigan Technological University
  • MS, Zoology and Physiology, University of Wyoming
  • BS, Biology with Honors Thesis, University of Michigan
"Nature loves to hide" —Heraclitus

Why study animal-ecosystem links?

For me, life is about relationships – personally with family, community and place, professionally among students, colleagues, and the species and systems we study, and metaphysically between humans and the earth. My overarching research interest, which is focused understanding the relationship between species and ecosystem processes, reflects this perspective.  This interest has required working across scales from understanding a species’ evolution and physiology to population ecology, community ecology, and ecosystem science.  This is important because it critically informs management decisions and conservation science. I am convinced that personal appreciation, public support, and effective conservation start with the understanding of animal-ecosystem relationships.

Among the major questions in my lab are: 1) How and under what circumstances do species control the distribution of energy, nutrients, and contaminants within and across ecosystems? and 2) How can we use biochemical indicators of energy and nutrient flow to understand and conserve organisms? My main theoretical work is focused on understanding how mammalian predators control ecological heterogeneity and how herbivores influence aquatic-terrestrial connectivity via effects on key ecosystem processes.  My applied work currently involves using stables isotope techniques to better understand animal ecophysiology and migration to inform conservation and management.

Select Recent Publications

  • Bump, J.K., Murawski*, C., Kartano**, L., Beyer, D., and Roel, B. 2013. Bear-baiting may influence the likelihood of wolf-hunting dog conflict. PLOS ONE. 8(4):1-7.
  • Murray**, B. D., Webster, C. R., Bump, J.K. 2013. Broadening the ecological context of ungulate-vegetation interactions: the importance of spatial scale and seasonal habitat use. Ecology 94:11317–1326
  • Sullivan*, A., Bump, J.K., Kruger, L., & Peterson, R.O. 2012. Batcave catchement areas: using stable isotopes to delineate bat hibernacula catchment areas. Ecological Applications. 22:1428-1434.
  • Bump, J. K. 2010. Landscapes of hope, oceans of promise: trophic cascades. Trends in Ecology and Evolution. 25:554-555.
  • Bump, J.K., Webster, C. R., Vucetich, J.A, Peterson, R.O., Shields, J.M., & Powers, M.D. 2009. Ungulate carcasses perforate ecological filters and create biogeochemical hotspots in forest herbaceous layers allowing trees a competitive advantage. Ecosystems 12:996-1007.
  • Bump, J.K., Peterson, R.O., & Vucetich, J.A. 2009. Wolves modulate soil nutrient heterogeneity and foliar nitrogen by configuring the distribution of ungulate carcasses. Ecology, 90:3159-3167.
  • Lovvorn, J.R., Grebmeier, J.E., Cooper, L.W., Bump, J.K., & Richman, S.E. 2009. Modeling marine protected areas for threatened eiders in a climatically changing Bering Sea. Ecological Applications 19:1596–1613.
  • Bump, J.K., Tischler, K.B., Schrank, A.J., Peterson, R.O., Vucetich, J.A. 2009. Large herbivores and aquatic-terrestrial links in southern boreal forests. Journal of Animal Ecology 78: 338-345.
  • Bump, J.K. 2007. Pyramid of ideas: the art of generating novel research questions. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. 5:555-556.

Select Recent Projects

  • Wolf Ecology, Conservation, & Management in Michigan
  • Large herbivores and aquatic-terrestrial links
  • Modeling geographic catchment areas for bat hibernacula using stable isotopes
  • Predator control of resource heterogeneity via prey carcass distribution
  • Habitat structure and predator-prey interactions
  • Golden-winged Warbler Status & Ecology in Honduras
  • Assessment of suitable habitat for elk range expansion in Michigan