Download the syllabus

Wildlife Ecology and Management

Instructor: Dr. Tim Karels, Department of Biology, California State University - Northridge. email:

Wildlife Ecology and Management is an upper division course for senior biology undergraduates and graudate students. Students will learn basic ecological principles and how those principles are applied in the conservation, management and control of wildlife. Students will also learn and use classical and modern tools and techniques used by wildlife managers in the field and on the computer for monitoring, measuring and analysis of wildlife populations, such as distance sampling, mark-recapture methods, survival analysis, home range analysis, and population growth and harvest modeling.  This course is recommended for those students interested in pursuing a career in applied ecology, conservation and management.

Topics Covered

1. What is wildlife and wildlife management and a brief history of wildlife management in North America

2. The importance of food and cover

3. Dispersal, dispersion, and distribution of populations

4. Population growth, regulation, and analysis of stage and age structured popuations, and population viability analyses

5. Predation, Parasitism, and Disease and analyses of survival

6. Animal behavior in management

7. Hunting, harvesting and analysis of harvest rates for sustainable offtake

8. Methods of censusing, indeximg and estimating population abundance

9. Experiments in wildlife management

10. Conservation in Theory and Pracice

11.Ecosystem Management and Conservation

12. Wildlife Techniques in the Field

Degree Fulfillment

Wildlife Ecology and Management is a lecture, lab and field course listed in the catalogue as BIOL428/L/492W. Students enrolled in this course must be enrolled in all three sections.

Prerequisites are Biological Principles I and II (BIOL106/L;107/L) and Evolutionary Biology (BIOL322)

For students in the BA program, the course fulfills the Ecology and Environmental Biology course requirement and field study requirement.

For students in the BS program in Environmental Biology (Option II), the course fulfills the Ecology requirement. For those in Marine Biology (Option IV), the course fulfills four Elective units.


Sinclair, A. R. E. , J. M. Fryxell, and G. Caughley. 2006. Wildlife ecology, conservation and management. Blackwell Science, Cambridge. ISBN 1405107375


Evaluation is based on:

1. Two exams at 15 % each (Midterm Wed. March 12, 8.00 - 9:30 am and Final Mon. May 12, 8:00-10:00 am)

2. Two lab exams at 10% each (Wed. March 12 10:00 - 11:45 and Wed. May 7. 8:00 - 10:00

3. Nest Predation study (4%)

4. Four quizzes at 1% each

5. Management or Recovery Plan which includes two presentations at 5% each and a final report at 20%.

6. Participation in field studies and classroom discussions for 12%