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Dr. Thilina Surasinghe

Dr. Thilina Surasinghe sitting at his office desk with bookshelves in background
Associate Professor of Biological Sciences
Science and Mathematics Center, Room 378
BS, University of Colombo
PhD, Clemson University

Dr. Thilina Surasinghe is a wildlife biologist with specialization in conservation biology and landscape ecology. He earned his PhD from Clemson University with research focus on the impacts of current and historical land uses on stream ecosystems. His current studies focus on biotic homogenization along urban-rural gradients; species responses to local and landscapes-scale environmental predictors; conservation planning; biodiversity conservation potential outside state protected areas; ecology of wetlands and freshwater ecosystems; use of GIS applications and Remote Sensing for natural-resource management. A significant part of his research takes place in Sri Lanka where he explores tropical biodiversity particularly on amphibians, reptiles, birds, and bats, including new species discoveries. 

He recently joined forces with MA Division of Ecological Restoration to monitor biological responses to wetland and stream restoration at retired cranberry farms. Hereto, he developed long-term ecological research that documents temporal changes in biological communities, population dynamics, and ecosystem or habitat structure. His research in southern New England also includes collaborative partnerships with Mass Audubon and Tidmarsh Living Observatory. He has partnered with the National Ecological Observatory Network for research on macrosystems ecology and with several NSF-funded Research Coordination Networks: Training Undergraduate Biologists through urban Agriculture, Urban Wildlife Information Network, River Field Studies, Ecological Research for Education. He is also trained on applied statistics (multivariate statistics, non-parametric statistics, and mixed-effects modeling) and data wrangling.

Area of Expertise
Conservation biology, biodiversity, landscape ecology, wetland and stream ecology and restoration, urban biodiversity, long-term ecological monitoring