Mary E. Pendergast, Ph.D.

Ecologist and Conservation Biologist

Mary joined the Wild Utah Project in early 2014. She received her Ph.D. from Utah State University in Biology and Community Ecology under the guidance of her mentor and adviser, Jim MacMahon. Her doctoral research explored the relative impacts of changes in vegetation architecture and prey availability on arthropod communities in a sage-steppe ecosystem. Mary went on to work as an Ecologist and Wildlife Biologist with a local consulting firm where she coordinated and conducted biological resource studies and habitat assessments with various stakeholders including federal and state agency biologists, the public, and project developers. Additionally, Dr. Pendergast teaches ecology and field biology courses at Westminster College.

As the staff conservation biologist for Wild Utah Project, Mary provides biological analyses for and with state and federal agencies, local working groups, and other nonprofit organizations. She presents research, develops manuscripts for publication, and produces and/or reviews conservation analyses in preparation for status reviews, listing petitions, and land management plans. Dr. Pendergast also engages in and oversees data collection efforts such as student internships and citizen science programs.

Mary serves on the board of the Utah Chapter of The Wildlife Society as well as on the Tracy Aviary Conservation Science Committee.