Tyler Grant

Former PhD Student
David Otis, Robert W. Klaver
Photograph of Tyler Grant

I am interested in developing statistical methodology such as hierarchical modeling and their use in evaluating the status of species of conservation concern and answering ecological questions.  I was attracted to Iowa State University by the quantitative expertise residing here.

In Spring 2015 I obtained my Ph.D. while working with former Unit Leader Dr. David Otis and Assistant Unit Leader Dr. Rolf Koford on a project to assess the functionality of restored wetlands in the Missouri River floodplain.

In the future I hope to use my expertise in federal government or academia.


From 2005 to 2009 I worked for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) in Carslbad, CA where I learned how the Endangered Species Act works on the ground.  I was involved in studies of monitoring flat-tailed horned lizards, coastal cactus wren, Coachella Valley fringe-toed lizards, Laguna Mountains skipper, and other species. Previous to working for USFWS, I completed my M.S. degree at Colorado State University on monitoring methods for flat-tailed horned lizards (mark-recapture, distance sampling, occupancy estimation) and manipulative experimentation to evaluate effects of off-highway vehicles.


Assessing the functionality of restored wetlands in the Missouri River floodplain.

During field season 2011, the MO River reached heights not seen since 1950. Thus, Grant and crew had to canoe over flooded agriculture fields to reach their survey points for amphibians. Hundreds of thousands of acres of wetlands have been lost along the Missouri River in the past century, in large part due to the Bank Stabilization and Navigation Project.  The Missouri River Mitigation Project has been acquiring and restoring wetlands in recent decades; however, the ecological value and functionality of these wetlands needs further evaluation.  This project is part of a four-state effort among Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, and Missouri funded in large part by the Army Corps of Engineers.

For Missouri River valley wetland restorations, alternative models of occupancy and recruitment of amphibians will be evaluated by comparing their predictions with future outcomes of restoration efforts.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers wishes to create wetlands that function as wetlands should, and amphibian recruitment and occupancy can provide guidance as to which restorations and management actions are successful.  The models built for amphibian occupancy and recruitment will suggest ways to optimize restorations.

Professional Scientific Presentations:
Grant, T., D. Otis, and R. Koford. 2010. Pilot study and plans for herpetofauna monitoring in Iowa.  Missouri River Natural Resources Conference, Nebraska City, NE
(Presenter & Author, Invited)


Grant, T.D. 2015. Anuran occupancy dynamics and an assessment of floodplain wetland distribution and hydrology in a Missouri River floodplain. Dissertation, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.


Tyler J. Grant, David L. Otis, and Rolf R. Koford 2015. Short-term anuran community dynamics in the Missouri River floodplain following an historic flood. Ecosphere 6:art197. http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/ES15-00011.1

Area of Expertise: 
Statistical Methodology
B.S., Utah State University, 2001
M.S., Colorado State University, 2005
Ph.D., Wildlife Ecology, Iowa State University, 2015
338 Science II