Sampling cave stream

Evin Carter

Wildlife Ecologist

Dr. Evin Carter is a Research Associate in the Biodiversity and Ecosystem Health Group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Evin also serves as the Wildlife Ecologist for Oak Ridge National Environmental Research Park and the 16,000-hectare Oak Ridge Reservation.

Evin's research questions are fairly inclusive in the area of applied evolutionary ecology. He takes an integrative approach to the development of theory-driven conservation guidelines while placing emphasis on mitigating the effects of biological invasions and other anthropogenic impacts. He specializes in cryptic and imperiled taxa such as pit-vipers and salamanders. However, his passion for the natural history of ectotherms and extreme environments (especially caves) has led him to work with an array of vertebrate ectotherms and invertebrates in subterranean systems of the Midwest, Southeast, and Ozarks; glades and wetlands in the Eastern U.S.; grassland-vernal pond systems in the west coast's Mediterranean climate; and mid-high elevation environments of Appalachia. The methods that he uses depend on the question and most often include a combination of basic and applied field-based approaches that can be used to inform broader-scale ecological and life history models. Current questions center on how life history and physiology interact to influence contemporary evolution against human-induced changes to environmental variance (e.g., temperature and precipitation regimes, drought, introduced species).

Evin is an active member and contributor to several biodiversity and sustainable development initiatives. He is Executive Director of the Southern Appalachian Man and the Biosphere (SAMAB) Program--a cooperative of agencies, Tribal leaders, universities, and NGOs focused on sustainability, climate resilience, and biodiversity conservation in the Southern Appalachians. SAMAB is the administrative body of the UNESCO-recognized Southern Appalachian Biosphere Region (