Keynote Speaker, Dr. Thomas K. Pauley
Dr. Thomas Pauley has been studying amphibians and reptiles in the Central Appalachians since 1966, with a focus on salamander ecology in the West Virginia subalpine forest for over forty years. His major research species in these high elevations is the Cheat Mountain Salamander (Plethodon nettingi). Research highlights from his work with the Cheat Mountain Salamander include a study for the U.S. Forest Service on its range and distribution, a 31-year study of the effects of a ski slope on a population, a study on a transplanted population, numerous surveys for timber harvests and various types of rights-of-way, and several studies for the WVDNR, USFS, and USFWS.
Other studies have included the effects of diflubenzuron on forest terrestrial and stream salamanders, effects of Gypcheck and Bt on forest terrestrial and stream salamanders, effects of acid deposition on forest terrestrial and stream salamanders, potential effects of ultraviolet radiation on pond-dwelling amphibians, use of artificial road-rut pools by amphibians, and amphibian and reptile inventories in National Parks — New River Gorge National River, Bluestone Scenic River, Gauley National Recreational River, Harpers Ferry National Historic Park, and Capitol Region Parks.
In 1987, Dr. Pauley co-authored a book entitled “Amphibians and Reptiles in West Virginia”, published by the University of Pittsburgh Press. This is the only book published on amphibians and reptiles in the state. He is currently working on the second edition of this book and a companion volume entitled “An Atlas of Amphibians and Reptiles in West Virginia”. Additionally, he is working on a book about his experiences with amphibians and reptiles in the Central Appalachians, anticipated for publication in 2020.
Dr. Pauley was a professor of biology at Marshall University from 1987 to 2013, preceded by 21 years of college teaching at Salem College in West Virginia and the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, PA. While at Marshall University, he was the major professor of over 90 graduate students whose research dealt with amphibians and reptiles of West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. Dr. Pauley currently serves on several graduate student committees at Marshall University and West Virginia University.