Dr. Kelly uses non-invasive sampling techniques to study behavior and population dynamics of elusive carnivores, including coyotes, jaguars, tigers, red wolves, cheetahs, fosas, leopards, and black bears.
As the human population continues to grow and threaten carnivore habitats, wildlife scientist Marcella Kelly seeks to understand more about the factors driving carnivore population dynamics, so that efforts can be made to better protect them. Her research technqiues, which include barbed wire hair snares, scat sampling, track surveying, remotely-triggered cameras, genetic monitoring, and traditional radio/GPS collaring are used to determine population density and movement dynamics. For example, in a recent study, she found that habitat fragmentation may impact population health for certain species more than others. Dr. Kelly's international projects, which take place in Belize, Nepal, Madagascar, Senegal, and Tanzania in collaboration with local governments and nonprofits, are funded by many national organizations, including National Geographic, Panthera, USAID, World Wildlife Fund, and the Wildlife Conservation Society.