Dr Jose W Valdez


About me


I am interested in ecology, biodiversity, conservation, and behavior to better understand the relationship between organisms and their environment.I obtained my Ph.D. from the University of Newcastle in Australia where I investigated habitat use and distribution patterns of an endangered amphibian to improve conservation management efforts. I also hold an M.Sc. in Ecology from the SUNY-ESF, where I studied the effects of social structure and group dynamics on the behavior of carrion crows, as well as a B.A. in Biology and Psychology.

My research experiences include leading scientific articles, collaborating with international scientists, and communicating research findings at conferences and seminars around the world. My research has achieved international media recognition and has been featured in the New York Times, Scientific American, New Scientist, the BBC, the Scientist, science podcasts, YouTube, and in newspapers around the world.

Due to my passion for science outreach, I founded the Ecospace to share the latest research and stories concerning the natural world with the general public. Besides working on the Ecospace, I am currently an Associate editor for The Herpetological Journal, topic editor for Sustainability, and a writer/editor for envirobytes. Lastly, my teaching and supervision experiences include developing and lecturing university courses and tutoring for over fifteen years in biology, psychology, statistics, and R programming.




Valdez, J.W. Arthropods as vertebrate predators: A review of global patterns. Global Ecology and Biogeography. doi: 10.1111/geb.13157.

Fløjgaard, C., Valdez, J.W., Dalby, L., Moeslund, J.E., Clausen, K.K., Ejrnæs, R., Pärtel, M., Brunbjerg, A. K. Dark diversity reveals importance of biotic resources and competition for plant diversity across broad environmental gradients. Ecology and Evolution 10, 6078– 6088.


Valdez, J.W., Brunbjerg, A.K., Fløjgaard, C., Dalby, L., Clausen, K.K., Pärtel, M., Pfeifer, N., Hollaus, M., Wimmer, M.H., Ejrnæs, R., Moeslund, J.E. Investigating the drivers of macro-fungal dark diversity using LiDAR. bioRxiv. doi: 10.1101/2020.07.02.185553

Helenbrook, W.D., Valdez, J.W. Species distribution modeling and conservation assessment of the black-headed night monkey (Aotus nigriceps): A species of least concern that faces widespread anthropogenic threats. bioRxivdoi10.1101/2020.05.20.107383.

Gould J., Beranek, C., Valdez, J.W., Mahony, M. Quality versus quantity: The balance between egg and clutch size among Australian amphibians is related to life history and environmental conditions. bioRxiv. doi: 10.1101/2020.03.15.992495.


Valdez J.W., Mandrekar K. Assessing the Species in the CARES Preservation Program and the Role of Aquarium Hobbyists in Freshwater Fish Conservation. Fishes 4(4), 49.

Valdez J.W. Predaceous diving beetles (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae) may affect the success of amphibian conservation efforts. Australian Journal of Zoology 66, 352-355.

Gould J., Valdez J.W., Clulow S. & Clulow J. Diving beetle offspring oviposited in amphibian spawn prey on the tadpoles upon hatching. Entomological Science 22, 393–397.

Topping C., Dalby L., Valdez J.W. Landscape-scale simulations as a tool in multi-criteria decision making to support agri-environment schemes. Agricultural Systems 176, 102671. doi: 10.1016/j.agsy.2019.102671.

Gould J., Valdez J.W. (joint first author), Upton R. Adhesive defence mucus secretions in the red triangle slug (Triboniophorus graeffei) can incapacitate adult frogs. Ethology 125 (8), 587– 591.

Valdez J.W., Hartig F., Fennel S., Poschlod P. The recruitment niche predicts plant community assembly across a hydrological gradient along ploughed and undisturbed transects in a former agricultural wetland. Frontiers in Plant Science. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2019.00088.

Gould J., Valdez J.W., Stockwell M.P., Clulow J., Mahony M. Mosquitoes as a potential vector for the transmission of the amphibian chytrid fungus. Zoology and Ecology 29(1), 38-44.

Valdez J.W., Klop-Toker K., Stockwell M.P., Fardell, L., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Informing compensatory habitat creation with experimental trials: a 3-year study of a threatened amphibian. Oryx 53(2), 310-320.


Klop-Toker K., Valdez J.W., Stockwell M.P., Edgar M., Fardell, L., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Assessing host response to disease treatment: how chytrid-susceptible frogs react to increased water salinity. Wildlife Research 44(8), 648-659.

Fardell L., Valdez J.W., Klop-Toker K., Stockwell M., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Effects of Vegetation Density on Habitat Suitability for the Endangered Green and Golden Bell Frog, Litoria aurea. Herpetological Conservation and Biology 13(1), 47-57.


Valdez J.W., Klop-Toker K., Stockwell M.P., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Differences in microhabitat selection patterns between a remnant and constructed habitat following management intervention. Wildlife Research 44(3), 248-258.

Klop-Toker K., Valdez J.W., Stockwell M.P., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Community level impacts of invasive mosquitofish may exacerbate the impact to a threatened amphibian. Austral Ecology 43(2), 213-224.


Valdez J.W., Klop-Toker K., Stockwell M.P., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Microhabitat selection varies by sex and age class in the endangered green and golden bell frog Litoria aurea. Australian Zoologist 38, 223-234.

Klop-Toker K., Valdez J.W., Stockwell M.P., Fardell, L., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. We made your bed, why won’t you lie in it? Food availability and disease affect reproductive output of a reintroduction program. PLOS ONE 11(7), e0159143.


Valdez J.W., Stockwell M.P., Klop-Toker K., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Factors driving the distribution of an endangered amphibian toward an industrial landscape in Australia. Biological Conservation 191, 520-528.

Bainbridge L., Stockwell M., Valdez J.W., Klop-Toker K., Clulow S., Clulow J., Mahony M. Tagging tadpoles: retention rates and impacts of visible implant elastomer (VIE) tags from the larval to adult amphibian stages. Herpetological Journal 25(3), 25:133-140.


Wascher C. A., Valdez J.W., Núñez Cebrián C., Baglione V., Canestrari D. Social factors modulating attention patterns in carrion crows. Behaviour 151(5), 555-572.




Die Kleinen fressen die Großen. Süddeutsche Zeitung. November 11. Germany.

Les invertébrés, ces tueurs en série. Pieuvre. Canada.

When Bugs Crawl Up the Food Chain. The New York Times. August 10. International. 

Cryptic Predators. Scientific American. Volume 322, Issue 2. International.

Tadpole Snacks. (Editor’s Choice in Ecology and Environment).  The ScientistVolume 34, Issue 1. International.


The Hobbyist Role in Fish ConservationAmazonas Magazine. Volume 9, Number 1. International.

Quelli che salvano i pesci per hobby. Il Venerdì di Repubblica. November 15. Italy.

The Aquarium Hobbyist’s Role in Fish Conservation. Reef to Rainforest. International.

Healthcare Myths, Python Hunting, Hmong Stories. Top of Mind with Julie Rose. BYUradio. Podcast.

Home aquarium hobbyists are helping save 30 rare fish from extinction. NewScientist. Issue 3251. International.

The hidden ark: How a grassroots initiative can help save fish from extinction. Phys.orgScienceDaily, Eurasia ReviewEco MagazineSciTech Daily. International.

No Such Thing As Mission Impossible For Slugs: Episode 267. No Such Thing as a Fish. Podcast.

The Aussie slug that can superglue its predators for days. University News. Australia.

Insect Filth and Bloody Messes with Evelyn From The Internets! SciShow. YouTube.

L’arme préférée de la limace à triangle rouge? Son mucus. Le Monde. France.

Etana liimaa vihollisensa puuhun kiinni. Tiede. Finland.

This Bizarre Australian Slug Has Such Sticky Slime, It Can ‘Superglue’ Its Enemies. ScienceAlert. International.

Vild forsvarsmekanisme: Snegl fanger rovdyr i ‘superlim’ i flere dage. Videnskab. Denmark.

Слизни намертво приклеивают хищных лягушек к веткам. ВЕСТИ Наука. Russia.

Australiassa elää etanalaji, joka liimaa vihollisensa pysyvästi puuhun kiinni. Helsingin Sanomat. Finland.

The superglue slug and other amazing animal defenders. BBC. International

Красный треугольник намертво приклеил лягушку к ветке. N+1. Russia.

Slime-fighting slug can superglue enemy frogs to trees for days. NewScientist. Issue 3218. International.


Croaking Science: Creating new pond habitats for amphibians; Is there a disease threat? Froglife. International

Disease and food availability in created habitats may affect frog reproduction. UON University News. Australia.

Frog reproduction in created ponds may be affected by disease and food availability. ScienceDaily. International.

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