J. Michelle Cawthorn

Temporary Assistant Professor

Department of Biology

Georgia Southern University

Statesboro, GA 30460-8042


Office: 912-681-5758

Fax: 912-681-0845

E-mail: mcawthor@georgiasouthern.edu




A native of north Texas, I trained in professional ballet before majoring in biology at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. I remained at Old Dominion to study the ecology of the Eastern Harvest Mouse (Reithrodontomys humulis) for my masters degree under the direction of Bob Rose. I received my PhD with Steve Vessey at Bowling Green State University for work on the ecology and behavior of shrews (Sorex and Blarina). After starting a family, working as a postdoc for Ellen Ketterson at Indiana University, and teaching at Ball State University, I finally fled the midwest and arrived at Georgia Southern in 1995. I teach general biology and environmental biology, and I am active in outreach to the public schools through programs like SMOC (Science and Math in the Outdoor Classroom)and teaching at the local Charter School. Click here to see some recent photos of my family.
I teach general biology and environmental biology for nonmajors. You can access the web resources for these courses by going to WebCT (you will need an access code and password). I also teach Evolution and Ecology labs each year.
My primary research interest is the ecology and behavior of small mammals, especially cryptic species whose biology is often overlooked or species that are difficult to study. I have pursued this interest primarily with shrews and small rodents such as the Eastern Harvest Mouse. As a postdoc, I also worked on the behavioral and physiological ecology of birds. Finally, I have a strong interest in biology education and have directed a number of grants on science education and teacher training.
Cawthorn, J.M., D. Morris, E.D. Ketterson, and V. Nolan, Jr. 1998. Influence of experimentally elevated testosterone on nest defence in male dark-eyed juncos. Animal Behaviour 56(3):617­621.
Chandler, C.R., J.M. Cawthorn, and G.M. Turano. 1997. Breeding by Horned Larks on the lower coastal plain of Georgia. Oriole 62(1,2):1­3.
Klukowski, L.A., J.M. Cawthorn, E.D. Ketterson, and V. Nolan, Jr. 1997. Effects of experimentally elevated testosterone on plasma corticosteroid binding globulin in Dark-eyed Juncos (Junco hyemalis). General and Comparative Endocrinology 108(1):141­151.
Cushing, B.S., and J.M. Cawthorn. 1996. Species differences in activity patterns during oestrus. Canadian Journal of Zoology 74(3):473­479.
Ketterson, E.D., V. Nolan, Jr., J.M. Cawthorn, P.G. Parker, and C. Ziegenfus. 1996. Phenotypic engineering: using hormones to explore the mechanistic and functional bases of phenotypic variation in nature. Ibis 138:70­86.
Cawthorn, J.M. 1994. A live-trapping investigation of the population biology of two syntopic species of Sorex. Pp. 39­43 in Biology of the Soricidae (J.F. Merritt, G.L. Kirkland Jr., and R.K. Rose, eds.). Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Special Publication No. 18.
Chandler, C.R., M.S. Woodrey, and J.M. Cawthorn. 1994. Breeding by the Black-and-White Warbler (Mniotilta varia) in southern Mississippi. Mississippi Kite 24(1):2­4.
Ketterson, E.D., V. Nolan Jr., C. Ziegenfus, D.P. Cullen, J.M. Cawthorn, and L. Wolf. 1991. Non-breeding season attributes of male Dark-eyed Juncos that acquired breeding territories in their first year. Pp. 1229­1239 in Acta XX Congressus Internationalis Ornithologici (Bell B.D., ed.). Christchurch, New Zealand.
Cawthorn, J. M. and R. K. Rose. 1989. The population ecology of the eastern harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys humulis) in southeastern Virginia. American Midland Naturalist 122(1):1­10.

Last updated Oct 2005