Manager, Biology and Environment
Ph.D., Ecological Responses to Riverine Floods and Flow Alteration, Oregon State University 2011
B.S., Biology, Texas A&M University 2005
Laura McMullen is a freshwater ecologist with over 12 years of experience designing and conducting field and research studies primarily involving topics of disturbance ecology, dam management, restoration practices, climate analyses, and fisheries and aquatic invertebrate biology and conservation. She currently is working on fisheries and restoration evaluation projects for the Chehalis and Yakima Rivers in Washington, Tryon Creek and the Columbia River Slough in Oregon, and the San Joaquin River in California, primarily using ecosystem modeling. Her previous work has included evaluating alternate flow and restoration scenarios for the San Joaquin River in relation to Chinook habitat for the Bureau of Reclamation, and modeling potential effects of climate and agricultural changes in the Umatilla River in eastern Oregon on steelhead habitat. In addition, her previous work at the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation included developing best management practices for river restoration in relation to western freshwater mussels; evaluating habitat status, life histories, and distribution of at-risk invertebrates on northern California national forest lands and Washington and Oregon Bureau of Land Management and forest service lands for the Interagency Special Status Sensitive Species Program; and collaboratively designing pollinator-friendly city park patches. She worked with a multi-agency team of scientists to develop an adaptive management program for a Nature Conservancy Sustainable Rivers Project river in the southwestern U.S. guided by the team’s multi-year field experimental and monitoring efforts and has participated on a National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis working group examining the science and efficacy of managed riverine floods worldwide. View Research Gate Profile.
Selected Publications & Projects
McMullen, L.E., P. De Leenheer, J.D. Tonkin, and D.A. Lytle. 2017. High mortality and enhanced recovery: modeling the countervailing effects of disturbance on population dynamics. Ecology Letters 20(12): 1566–1575.
Blevins, E., L. McMullen, S. Jepsen, M. Blackburn, A. Code, and S.H. Black. 2017. Conserving the Gems of our Waters: Best Management Practices for Protecting Native Western Freshwater Mussels During Aquatic and Riparian Restoration, Construction, Land Management Projects and Activities. 108 pp. Portland, OR: The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation. (Available online at www.xerces.org).
DeBano, S.J., D.E. Wooster, J. Walker, L.E. McMullen and D. Horneck. 2016. Interactive influences of climate change and agriculture on aquatic habitat in a Pacific Northwest watershed. Ecosphere 7(6) online.
Olden, J.D., C.P. Konrad, T.S. Melis, M.J. Kennard, M.C. Freeman, M.C. Mims, E.N. Bray, K.B. Gido, N.P. Hemphill, D.A. Lytle, L.E. McMullen, M. Pyron, C.T. Robinson, J.C. Schmidt, and J.G. Williams. 2014. Are large-scale flow experiments informing the science and management of freshwater ecosystems? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 12: 176-185.
McMullen, L.E. and D.A. Lytle. 2012. Quantifying invertebrate resistance to floods: a global-scale meta-analysis. Ecological Applications 22: 2164-2175.