Robert Montgomery Ph.D.

Robert Montgomery
Telephone: 517-432-4586

Department of Fisheries and Wildlife

Assistant Professor
9B Natural Resources

Area of Expertise: Ecology of carnivores and their prey; Spatial ecology; Landscape ecology; International wildlife conservation

Dr. Montgomery’s Website


Ph.D. in Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University, 2012
M.S. in Wildlife Science, University of Washington, 2005
B.A. in Biological Anthropology, University of Minnesota, 2002


I am a wildlife ecologist and the principle investigator of the RECaP laboratory devoted to Research on the Ecology of Carnivores and their Prey. I began developing this laboratory, situated in the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife at Michigan State University (MSU), in January, 2014. The goal of my research is to understand how carnivores hunting prey have physical and detectable consequences on the landscapes where they reside and on the human communities with which they share these landscapes. I am interested in documenting the influence of life history, abiotic, and biotic factors on individual carnivore/prey decision-making and to model how these decisions can scale-up to have population-level consequences with relevance to management, conservation, and policy. A central tenet of my research philosophy is to collaborate with agency biologists, students (undergraduates, graduate students, and postdocs), and faculty to enhance the scope and broaden the implications of my work.

Courses Taught

Applications of GIS to Natural Resources Management, FW419

Introduction to Science, Technology, the Environment and Public Policy, FW181

Undergraduate Seminar in Fisheries and Wildlife, FW293

Select Publications

Montgomery, R.A., G.J. Roloff, J.J. Millspaugh, and M. Nylen-Nemetchek. 2014. Living amidst a sea of agriculture: Predicting the occurrence of Canada lynx within an ecological island. Wildlife Biology 20:145-154.

Brown, D.D., R.A. Montgomery, R.W. Kays, and J.J. Millspaugh. 2014. Selection and spatial arrangement of rest sites within northern tamandua anteater home ranges. Journal of Zoology 293:160-170.

Meena, V., D.W. Macdonald, and R.A. Montgomery. 2014. Managing success: Asiatic lion conservation, interface problems and peoples’ perceptions in the Gir Protected Area. Biological Conservation 174:120-126.

Montgomery, R.A., J.A. Vucetich, G.J. Roloff, J.K. Bump, and R.O. Peterson. 2014. Where wolves kill moose: The influence of prey life history dynamics on the landscape ecology of predation. PLoS One 9(3): e91414.

Jachowski, D.S., R.A. Montgomery, R. Slotow, and J.J. Millspaugh. 2013. Unravelling complex associations between physiological state and movement of African elephants. Functional Ecology 27:1166-1175.

Montgomery, R.A., J.A. Vucetich, R.O. Peterson, G.J. Roloff, and K.F. Millenbah. 2013. The influence of winter severity, predation and senescence on moose habitat use. Journal of Animal Ecology 82:301-309.

Montgomery, R.A., G.J. Roloff, and J.J. Millspaugh. 2013. Variation in elk response to roads by season, sex, and road type. Journal of Wildlife Management 77:313-325. 

Montgomery, R.A., G.J. Roloff, and J.J. Millspaugh. 2012. Importance of visibility when evaluating animal response to roads. Wildlife Biology 18:393-405.

Goetz, K.T., R.A. Montgomery, J.M. Ver Hoef, R.C. Hobbs and D.S. Johnson. 2012. Identifying essential habitat of the endangered beluga whale in Cook Inlet, Alaska. Endangered Species Research 16:135-147.

Montgomery, R.A., G.J. Roloff and J.M. Ver Hoef. 2011. Implications of ignoring telemetry error on inference in wildlife resource use models. Journal of Wildlife Management 75:702-708.

Montgomery, R.A., G.J. Roloff, J.M. Ver Hoef and J.J. Millspaugh. 2010. Can we accurately characterize wildlife resource use when telemetry data are imprecise? Journal of Wildlife Management 74:1917-1925.

Montgomery, R.A., C.N. Rubeck-Schurtz, K.F. Millenbah, G.J. Roloff, M.E. Whalon and L.G. Olsen. 2009. Modeling protected species habitat and assigning risk to inform regulatory decisions. Environmental Management 44:12-23.

Montgomery, R.A., J.M. Ver Hoef and P.L. Boveng. 2007. Spatial modeling of haul-out site use by harbor seals in Cook Inlet, Alaska. Marine Ecology Progress Series 341:257-264.

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