The research is helping scientists begin to understand how predators impact habitats, species and, ultimately, the world. UW’s College of the Environment recently published an in-depth story on Wirsing’s research and the published report.
“Wirsing’s assessment of predator-prey interactions not only establishes an important framework for predicting the impact a predator can induce in an ecosystem, but also expands the current understanding of how ecological and environmental context interact with how prey species respond to risk.
“This work also emphasizes the importance of understanding species’ natural history, encouraging future researchers to dive deeper into the study, modeling and predicting many of the hidden patterns found in nature. Understanding how the creatures that surround us, big or small, shape our world will ultimately give us a stronger chance at restoring what has been lost, preserving what still remains and sustaining ourselves because, as Wirsing passionately puts it, ‘we’re not separate from nature. We are of nature.'”