J. Michael Scott
College of Natural Resources
San Diego, California, USA
Department of Fish & Wildlife
With UI Since 1986
Ph.D. Oregon State University Zoology emphasis on Ecology
M.A. San Diego State University Zoology with emphasis on Marine Biology
B.S. Zoology San Diego California
Estimating Animal Numbers
Reserve Assessment and Design
Dr. Scott has devoted a lifetime to the study and conservation of the world’s rarest species. After 37 years with the US Department of Interior he retired in 2011 as a senior scientist with the U.S. Geological Survey, leader of the Idaho Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and University Distinguished Professor of Fish and Wildlife Sciences at the University of Idaho. He has published more than 200 journal articles and written or edited ten books. His work and that of his students and colleagues has been recognized with multiple national and international awards from public agencies, nonprofit groups and professional societies. Techniques he, his students and colleagues pioneered include the variable Circular Plot method for estimating population sizes of birds and Gap Analysis a “tool used in wildlife conservation to map the distribution of natural resources e.g. species ecological systems, geophysical features and document their occurrence in conservation areas. Use that information to identify which species or ecosystems represent “gaps” in the current system of conservation areas. Land use planners, conservation groups and others use Gap Analysis to identify opportunities for increasing protection of natural resources by changes in land use practices, establishment of new or addition to existing wildlife refuges, natural resource parks. Gap Analysis is being used worldwide to inform natural resource management and policy decisions regarding creation of new natural area reserves. His current research focuses on recovery of endangered species. In doing so he and his colleagues have documented that 84 % of currently listed species will require continuing management activities even after recovery goals have been achieved. These species are Conservation Reliant. The work of Dr. Scott his students, colleagues and the public land management agencies and ranchers he works with is documenting the elements of America’s landscape needed to save species while they are still common and improve effectiveness of recovery actions for imperiled species.
- Scott, J.M. D.D. Goble, A. Haines and J.A. Wiens M. Neel 2010 Conservation reliant species: Our new relationship with nature. Conservation Letters 3:91-97.
- Scott, J.M., P. Heglund et al. (editors). 2002 Predicting species occurrence: Issues of accuracy and scale. Island Press, Covelo, CA .
- Noss, R.F., T.E. LaRoe III, and J.M. Scott. 1995. Endangered ecosystems of the United States: A preliminary assessment of loss and degradation. National Biological Service Biological Report, 28:58 pp.
- Scott, J.M., F. Davis, B. Csuti, R. Noss, B. Butterfield, C. Groves, H. Anderson, S. Caicco, F. D’Erchia, T.C. Edwards, Jr., J. Ulliman, and R.G. Wright. 1993. Gap Analysis: A geographic approach to protection of biological diversity. Wildlife Monograph, No. 123:1-41.
- Tear, T.H., J.M. Scott, P.H. Hayward, and B. Griffith. 1993. Status and prospects for success of the Endangered Species Act: A look at recovery plans. Science 262:976-977.
- Scott, J.M., S. Mountainspring, F.L. Ramsey, and C.B. Kepler. 1986. Forest bird communities of the Hawaiian Islands: Their dynamics, ecology and conservation. Studies in Avian Biology 9, 431 pp.
- Reynolds, R.T., J.M. Scott, and R.A. Nussbaum. 1980. A variable circular plot method for estimating bird numbers. Condor 82:309-313.
Past member of the Nature Conservancy Senior Science Advisory Board, Doris Duke Charitable Association science advisory Board, Board of Directors Society for Conservation Biology Board of Directors , and the Editorial Board BioScience magazine . He is currently Member of Lava Lake Institute’s for Science and Conservation Science Advisory Board and serves on several other science advisory boards and committees for nonprofit groups and professional societies.
- University Distinguished Professor rank University of Idaho Spring 2011
- Spirit of Defenders Award for Public Service Presented for contributions to policy development and for bringing science to the science policy discourse. By Defenders of Wildlife 2010
- George B. Fell Award Natural Areas Association for leadership in science and conservation in the Western Hemisphere especially in the fields of ornithology, conservation biology and management of endangered species. Fall 2009
- Ralph W. Schrieber Award of the American Ornithologists Union International award presented for extraordinary scientific contributions to the conservation, restoration or preservation of birds and their habitats.2006
- Distinguished Service Award US Department of Interior 2006: Highest Award given to career employee by Department of Interior
- Honorary Member Cooper Ornithological Society, 2001
- Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science for pioneering use of Landsat in predicting species occurrences, 1999
- Twentieth Century Distinguished Service Award, from the Ninth Lukacs Symposium, for outstanding contribution to the development and direction of cross-disciplinary research and a combination of practicality and scholarship for statistics, ecology, environment, and society,1999
- Edward T. La Roe III Award from the Society for Conservation Biology for outstanding application of research results to management actions and policy initiatives; work on Hawaiian Forest Bird Survey, Gap Analysis, and recovery of endangered species were singled out for special attention, 1998