Dr. Christopher R. Stieha

Associate Professor, General Biology, Botany, Population and Community Ecology

Dr. Christopher R. Stieha

Contact Information


Office: Roddy 273
Phone: 717-871–4081

Office Hours

M: 3 - 5 pm
T: 8 - 9 am
W: 9 - 11 am
Comments: Other office hours by appointment.


B.S. in Chemistry, B.A. in Biology, University of Kentucky
M.S. in Biology, University of Kentucky
Ph.D. in Biology, University of Kentucky

Courses Taught:

BIOL 100 – General Biology, Lecture and Lab
BIOL 221 – Concepts of Botany, Lab
BIOL 471 – Population and Community Ecology

Areas of Specialization:

Plant Ecology, Plant-Herbivore Interactions, Agro-ecology, Quantitative Ecology, Statistics

Research Interest(s):

Although the world is green, the world is not peaceful; plants compete for resources and defend themselves against herbivores and pathogens.  These interactions drive population dynamics and have the potential to lead to species loss as well as pest outbreaks.  Currently, my research focuses on 1) plant-herbivore interactions and the potential to use plant defenses to control pests in agricultural systems and 2) competition between male and female plants and the loss of one sex.  To quantify the relationship between these interactions and population dynamics, I use a range of tools from laboratory experiments and field-collected data to mathematical models and computer simulations.

Selected Publication(s): (* denotes undergraduate coauthor)

Stieha, C.R., García-Ramos, G., McLetchie, D.N., and Crowley, P. 2017. Maintenance of the sexes and persistence of a clonal organism in spatially complex metapopulations. Evolutionary Ecology.  31:363-386.

Barraquand, F., Louca, S., Abbott, K.C., Cobbold, C.A., Cordoleani, F., DeAngelis, D.L., Elderd, B.D., Fox, J.W., Greenwood, P., Hilker, F.M., Lutscher, F., Dennis Murray, D., Stieha, C.R., Taylor, R.A., Vitense, K., Wolkowicz, G., and Tyson, R.C. 2017.  Current challenges in the modeling of population cycles.  Ecology Letters.  20(8): 1074-1092

Stieha, C.R., Abbott, K, and Poveda, K. 2016 The Effects of Plant Compensatory Regrowth and Induced Resistance on Herbivore Population Dynamics.  American Naturalist. 187(2): 167-181

Cilles, S., Coy, G.*, Stieha, C.R., Cox, J., Crowley, P.H., Maehr, D. 2016. A Comparison of Seed Predation, Seed Dispersal, and Seedling Herbivory in Oak and Hickory: Species with Contrasting Regenerating Abilities in a Bluegrass Savanna–Woodland Habitat.  Northeastern Naturalist. 23(4): 466-481.

Moore, C.M., Stieha, C.R., Nolting, B.C., Cameron, M.K., and Abbott, K.C. 2016. QPot: An R package for stochastic differential equation quasi-potential analysis. The R Journal.  8(2): 19-38.

Stieha, C.R. and Poveda, K.  2015  Tolerance responses to herbivory: implications for future management strategies in potato.  Annals of Applied Biology. 166: 208-217.

Stieha, C., Montovan, K, and Castillo-Guajardo, D. 2014 A Field Guide To Programming: A Tutorial for Learning Programming and Population Models. CODEE Journal. URL: http://www.codee.org/ref/CJ14-0876

Stieha, C.R., Middleton, A.*, Stieha, J.*, Trott, S.*, and McLetchie, D.N.  2014 The dispersal process of asexual offspring and the contribution to population persistence.  American Journal of Botany. 101(2): 348-56.