Dr. Bill Hopkins

Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation

Dr. Hopkins’ research program at Virginia Tech focuses on physiological ecology and wildlife ecotoxicology. In relation to global change, Dr. Hopkins studies how wildlife respond physiologically and behaviorally to anthropogenic disturbances. He is particularly intrigued by tradeoffs among physiological processes (e.g., reproduction, thermoregulation, immune function) and how global changes may force animals to reprioritize their investments of time and energy. Much of Dr. Hopkins’ research is also focused on maternal effects and how maternal behavior and physiology may influence a mother’s fitness and the fitness of her offspring. Emphasis is on maternal transfer of teratogenic compounds and resulting effects on developing offspring.

At Virginia Tech, Dr. Hopkins has taught undergraduate courses in Wildlife Biology and Tropical Ecology & Conservation. At the Graduate level, he has taught Vertebrate Physiological Ecology and the Global Change Seminar Course.

Dr. Hopkins is a Professor in the Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation at Virginia Tech.  He is also the Director of the Global Change Center at Virginia Tech and the Director of the Interfaces of Global Change Interdisciplinary Ph.D. program. He holds additional adjunct associate professor appointments with the University of Georgia’s Odum School of Ecology and the College of Pharmacy’s Interdisciplinary Toxicology Program, and is on the Graduate Faculty at UGA. Hopkins has served on the editorial boards of three journals, the Scientific Advisory Board for the International Center for Birds of Prey, the Science Council for the Biodiversity Research Institute, and as a member of three National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council Committees.

He has been a key scientific contributor to five of the U.S. Department of Interior’s Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration (NRDAR) cases, including those surrounding the B.P. oil spill, the T.V.A. ash spill (Kingston, TN), the Olin Superfund site (Saltville, VA), the South River mercury spill (Waynesboro, VA), and the Los Alamos National Lab in New Mexico. In all five NRDAR cases, he has worked effectively with multiple stakeholder groups, including industry, state government, federal government, local concerned citizens, NGOs, private consultants, and other academic institutions. He also regularly serves in advisory capacities at the local, state, national, and international levels on issues pertaining to waste management, sustainability, and the global decline of amphibians.

Dr. Hopkins has published more than 165 peer-reviewed manuscripts and book chapters on subjects pertaining to environmental stress, pollution, and physiological ecology.

Email           Lab Website


Recent Relevant Publications

Willson, J. D., and Hopkins, W.A. 2013. Evaluating the effects of anthropogenic stressors on source-sink dynamics in pond-breeding amphibians. Conservation Biology.

Hopkins, B.C., Willson, J.D., and Hopkins, W.A. 2013. Mercury exposure is associated with negative effects on turtle reproduction. Environmental Science & Technology 47:2416-2422.

Metts, B., Buhlmann, K., Tuberville, T., Scott, D., Hopkins, W. 2013. Maternal transfer of contaminants and reduced reproductive success of southern toads (Bufo [Anaxyrus] terrestris) exposed to coal combustion waste. Environmental Science & Technology 47: 2846-2853.

DuRant, S. E., W. A. Hopkins, J. R. Walters, and G. R. Hepp. 2013. Ecological, evolutionary, and conservation implications of incubation temperature-dependent phenotypes in birds. Biological Reviews 88:499-509.

Hawley, D., DuRant, S., Wilson, A., Adelman, J., Hopkins, W. 2012. Additive metabolic costs of thermoregulation and pathogen infection. Functional Ecology 26:701-710.

Hopkins, W.A., and Rowe, C.L., 2010. Interdisciplinary and hierarchical approaches for studying the effects of metals and metalloids on amphibians. In Ecotoxicology of Amphibians and Reptiles, 2nd edition, D. Sparling, G. Linder, C.A. Bishop (eds). SETAC Press, Pensacola, FL, pp 325-336.

Martin, L.B., Hopkins, W.A., Mydlarz, L.D., and Rohr, J.R. 2010. The effects of anthropogenic global changes on immune functions and disease resistance. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1195: 129–148.

For a complete list of published work, please see Dr. Hopkins’ website.