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Holly R. Prendeville

Holly R. Prendeville
WWETAC & Northwest Climate Hub Coordinator
Western Wildland Environmental Threat Assessment
1220 SW 3rd Ave.
1220 SW 3rd Avenue, Suite 1400
Portland, OR 97204-2825
United States
Current Research
My research focuses on understanding how the environment and other species affect wild plant populations. I study wild plants to comprehend the factors that affect how plant populations grow, how traits change over time, and timing of life events differ among individuals and popualtions in different environments. Specifically, I am interested in how microorganisms affect plant populations, the role of maternal effects in trait evolution, and how mating patterns affect trait evolution and maintain diversity in natural populations. I use this information to guide restoration in the Interior Mountain West using seed transfer zones.
Research Interest
Plant evoutionary ecology
Plant-virus interactions
Population dynamcis
Seed transfer zones
Assortative mating
Local adaptation
Materal effects
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Ph.D., Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, 2010
  • University of Vermont, Bachelor Of Science, Biology,
Professional Experience
  • Coordinator,  USDA Northwest Climate Hub - USFS Pacific Northwest Research Station,  2016 - Current
    As Coordinator of the USDA Northwest Climate Hub, I serve Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington by delivering science-based knowledge and practical information to farmers, ranchers, forest landowners, tribal nations, natural resource managers, and USDA agencies by providing guidance and strategies for managing productive, working landscapes under extreme weather caused by climate change.
  • Research Geneticist,  USDA Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station,  2014 - 2016
    To guide post-fire restoration efforts in grasslands in the Interior Northwest, I am investigating the efficacy of seed-zones via a reciprocal transplant experiment with Bluebunch wheatgrass (Psuedoroegneria spicata). This project is in collaboration with J. Brad St. Clair at the FS Pacific Northwest Research Station and members of the Rocky Mountain Research Station in Boise, ID including Nancy Shaw and Francis Kilkenny.
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate,  University of Virginia,  2011 - 2014
    Examining the role of maternal effects on population adaptation on a forest herb, the American Bellflower(Campanula americana). The phenotype of an organism is due to genetic and environmental factors of the organism as well as maternal effects. Maternal effects are the contributions of the maternal environment and maternal phenotype on the offspring phenotype. Maternal effects are ubiquitous across plant taxa. In the American Bellflower, the initiation of flowering in the maternal plant affects the timing to germination in the offspring. The timing of germination in the American Bellflower determines the life history of an individual (i.e. annual or a biennial). This phenotypic plasticity allows a plant to respond to environmental heterogeneity and may allow for population adaptation to local environments. To investigate the role of maternal effects on population adaptation, Laura F. Galloway and I are 1) comparing the contributions of annuals and biennials to population growth rates among wild populations of American Bellflower along a range-wide transect, 2) determining the amount of variation in life history frequency among three common garden experiments over a latitudinal gradient, and 3) evaluating if selection on life history schedule acts on maternal traits, individual traits or both.
Awards & Recognition
  • Certificate of Appreciation, 2018
    For considerable assistance to sustain the USDA Northwest Climate Hub operations January – March 2018 in the absence of a Director.
  • Station Director Award for Excellence in Science Communication, 2018
    Pacific Northwest Research Station, Station Director Award for Excellence in Science Communication.
  • Certificate of Merit, 2017
    For outstanding performance strengthening partnerships, developing strategic documents and communicating with stakeholders and for developing products and outcomes for the USDA Northwest Climate Hub.
  • Certificate of Merit, 2016
    For outstanding performance strengthening partnerships, developing strategic documents and communicating with stakeholders and for developing products and outcomes for the USDA Northwest Climate Hub.
Featured Publications
Other Publications
Research Highlights

New Seed Zones for Bluebunch Wheatgrass Tested

Year: 2015
New seed zones for bluebunch wheatgrass will help local, state, and federal land managers in the Interior Northwest to determine sources of bluebunch wheatgrass populations for postfire restoration. This research will inform the Native Seed Strategy by improving scientists’ understanding of methods ...