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Robert Weaver

Robert E. Weaver, Ph.D.

Science Building, Room 338M
400 E. University Way
Ellensburg, WA  98926-7537
(509) 963-2800                                               




Ph.D. Washington State University, Zoology, 2010
M.Sc. Central Washington University, Biology 2006
B.Sc. Central Washington University, Biology 2003


Human Anatomy and Physiology, General Biology I, Mechanisms of Evolution, Herpetology, Human Physiology, Fundamentals of Biology


My research is focused on the biology of squamate reptiles, particularly on the  organism-ecosystem interface and the behavioral ecology of snakes.  For nearly 10 years, I have conducted extensive field research on the natural history of  several rare, poorly-known, and endangered snake species.  In the field and  laboratory, I have spent much time testing hypotheses related to snake behavior,  such as foraging time and prey preference.  This field research has greatly  refined my development of experimental protocols in a hypothesis-driven  framework.  My research has resulted in a number of peer-reviewed publications that have shown novel insights into snake behavior, including the consumption of  new prey items, unexpected abiotic factors effecting movement patterns, and  timing of activity.  In recent years, I have broadened my research skills and  capacity by collaborating with other researchers on many hypothesis-driven  projects that integrate natural history with physiology, cellular tissue function, and phylogeography to develop a more comprehensive view of the evolution of squamate reptiles.

Representative Recent Publications

(asterisks indicate undergraduate co-authors)

Meyers, E. A*.,Weaver, R. E.,and H. Alamillo. 2013. Population Stability of the  Northern Desert Nightsnake (Hypsiglena chlorophaea deserticola) during the Pleistocene. Journal of Herpetology 47:432-437

Weaver, R.E.,Clark, W. H., and D. McEwen. 2012. Prey chemical discrimination  by the desert nightsnake (Hypsiglena chlorophaea): A comparison of invertebrate  and vertebrate prey. Journal of Herpetology 46: 523-526

O'Connor, A., Wallace, J., King, J., and J. A. Walker. 2011. Discovery of the Triploid Checkered Whiptail Lizard (Aspidoscelis neotesselata) in Washington  State. Northwestern Naturalist 92:233-236

Weaver.,R.E. 2011. Effects of moonlight on the activity patterns of the desert nightsnake (Hypsiglena chlorophaea). Northwest Science 80:497-501
Weaver, R.E., Weaver, K.S., Clark, W. H., McEwen, D.,and B. Bauer*. 2010. Diet  and foraging behavior of the western terrestrial gartersnake (Thamnophis  elegans) in a stream within the shrub-steppe of central Washington State.  Northwestern Naturalist  91:309-317.

Weaver, R. E. 2010. Diet and reproduction of the desert nightsnake (Hypsiglena chlorophaea) in central Washington state. Journal of Herpetology 44:148-152.

Weaver, R. E. 2010. Activity patterns of the desert nightsnake (Hypsiglena chlorophaea). Southwestern Naturalist 55: 172-178

Weaver, R. E., and K. V. Kardong.  2010. Discrimination of potential prey through chemoreception by the sharp-tailed snake (Contia tenuis). Northwestern Naturalist 91:58-62.

Weaver, R. E. and K. V. Kardong. 2009. Microhabitat and prey odor selection in Hypsiglena chlorophaea. Copeia 2009: 475-482.

Dornburg, A. * and R. E. Weaver. 2009. First report of scavenging  by the northern pacific rattlesnake (Crotalus oreganus oreganus). Northwestern Naturalist 90: 55-57.

Weaver, R.E. 2008. Distribution, abundance, and habitat associations of the night snake (Hypsiglena torquata) in Washington State. Northwestern Naturalist 89:164-170.

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