Kara A. Moore

Assistant Project Scientist
Center for Population Biology
Department of Evolution and Ecology
University of California, Davis
5310 Storer Hall
One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA, 95616

Contact me here.

My primary objectives are to provide, communicate, and coordinate scientific efforts in applied restoration and conservation ecology. I design research and outreach in response to questions on the ecological factors that influence reserve design, species listing, conservation strategies, and restoration methods. The work in my lab addresses a broad conceptual spectrum from ecological theory, adaptive management (AM) design, to field applications, and restoration methods development.

In research, I work on a diverse array of questions to inform management challenges, including constraints on the establishment and persistence of rare plant populations, colonization and extinction dynamics, and the combination of evolutionary and ecological mechanisms at play across species range boundaries. The application of conservation science to problems in restoration and conservation requires ecological understanding on all levels of organization: populations, communities, and broad scale distributions.

For a few examples, I am interested in constraints on the establishment and persistence of rare plant populations, the significance of suitable but seed-limited sites,  the evolutionary and ecological dynamics at species range boundaries. Important themes in my research are the influences of dispersal (in time and space) and variation in environmental conditions on the establishment, size, and persistence of populations. The significance of these concepts applies across natural and managed landscapes and deeply impacts the conservation of species, communities, and ecosystems. Since conservation and restoration ecology require knowledge at the levels of populations, communities, and broad scale distributions, I have addressed questions on each of these levels in my work. Here are a few of my current projects:

Vulnerability and adaptive management

Gilia tricolor

Range dynamics in CA grasslands

 Grusonia parisii

Persistence for rare desert plants


Effects of shading on desert annuals


Mapping rare plants

Field Sites

I am currently working in serpentine grasslands and oak woodlands at the University of California McLaughlin Natural Reserve and Knoxville Recreation Area in Lake and Napa Counties, California and on rare plants throughout the California and Nevada Deserts, including  Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.
Barstow woolly sunflower

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