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Dr. Jennifer Deitloff

East Campus Science Center 204
(570) 484-2065

Courses Most Commonly Taught

  • Herpetology
  • Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy
  • Animal Biodiversity
  • Introductory Biology/Principles of Biology
  • Topics in Biology

Areas of Expertise

I am a behavioral evolutionary ecologist who is interested in how ecological processes and sexual selection lead to the evolution of complex phenotypic traits. My research addresses these two focal questions: 1) How do ecological pressures drive evolutionary patterns of behavior? 2) What is the role of behavior in signaling fitness and generating species diversity?

I address these two areas using field studies and laboratory experiments. I seek to understand the connections between behavior and the ecology or evolution of a species. Although I concentrate primarily on amphibians and reptiles, I have experience working with other taxa, notably mammals and insects. I have worked with undergraduate students in their development as new scientists in a variety of research areas including behavior, ecology, and evolution of animals or with animal/plant interactions.

If you are an undergraduate at LHU interested in working with me, view my profile and research on LinkedIn, ResearchGate, or view my CV.

Links of Interest


  • Ph.D., Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. Iowa State University
    Dissertation: Ecological processes responsible for species co-occurrence patterns in two species of Plethodon salamanders.
  • B.S., Zoology, Minnesota State University
    Thesis: Weather and changes in population size in Peromyscus leucopus and Microtus pennsylvanicus: a twenty year study.

Courses Developed

  • Herpetology (new course at LHU)
  • Geometric Morphometrics for Ecologists (not offered at LHU)

Professional Publications

Deitloff, J., C. Floyd, S. P. Graham. 2016. Examining head-shape differences and ecology in morphologically similar salamanders at their zone of contact. Copeia 104: 233-242.

Deitloff, J., M. W. Dunbar, D. A. Ingber, B. E. Hibbard, and A. J. Gassmann. 2016. Effects of refuges on the evolution of resistance to transgenic corn by western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera Le Conte. Pest Management Science 72: 190-198. DOI: 10.1002/ps.3988.

Phillips, J. G. , J. Deitloff, C. Guyer, S. Huetteman and K. E. Nicholson. 2015. Biogeography and evolution of a widespread Central American lizard species complex: Norops humilis, (Squamata: Dactyloidae). BMC Evolutionary Biology 15:143. DOI: 10.1186/s12862-015-0391-4.

Deitloff, J., M. Alcorn, and S. Graham. 2014. Variation in mating systems of salamanders: mate guarding or territoriality? Behavioral Processes 106:111-117. doi: 10.1016/j.beproc.2014.04. 006.

Deitloff, J., V. Johnson, C. Guyer. 2013. Bold colors in a drab lineage: Do Eastern Indigo Snakes exhibit color dimorphism? PLOS ONE 8: e64538. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0064538.

Graham, S. P., M. Alcorn, E. K. Timpe, and J. Deitloff. 2013. Seasonal changes of primary and secondary sexual characteristics in the salamanders Eurycea aquatica and E. cirrigera. Herpetological Conservation and Biology 8:53-64.

Khon, N. R., J. Deitloff, S. Dartez, M. M. Wilcox, and R. G. Jaeger. 2013. Memory of conspecifics in male Plethodon cinereus: Implications for territorial defense. Current Zoology 59:326-334.

Alcorn, M., J. Deitloff, S. Graham, and E. K. Timpe. 2013. Sexual dimorphism in head shape, relative head-width, and body size of Eurycea aquatica and Eurycea cirrigera. Journal of Herpetology 47:321-327.

Deitloff, J., J. D. Peterson, and D. C. Adams. 2013. Complex species interactions and environmental conditions lead to unpredictable community outcomes in Plethodon salamanders. Herpetologica 69: 1-10.

Deitloff, J. 2011. Sympatry between two wide-ranging salamander species. IRCF Reptiles and Amphibians 18: 6-11.

Deitloff, J., M. Falcy, J. D. Krenz, and B. R. McMillan. 2010. Correlating small mammal abundance to climatic variation over twenty years. Journal of Mammalogy 91: 193-199.

Graham, S. P., E. K. Timpe, S. K. Hoss, M. Alcorn, and J. Deitloff. 2010. Notes on reproduction in the Brownback Salamander (Eurycea aquatica). IRCF Reptiles and Amphibians 17:168-172.

Deitloff, J., J. O. Church, D. C. Adams, and R. G. Jaeger. 2009. Interspecific agonistic behaviors in a salamander community: Implications for alpha-selection. Herpetologica 65: 174-182.

Deitloff, J., D. C. Adams, B. F. M. Olechnowski, and R. G. Jaeger. 2008. Interspecific aggression in Ohio Plethodon: Implications for competition. Herpetologica 64: 180-188.

Professional Presentations (in last 5 yrs):

2015 - Deitloff, J., J. Phillips, K. Nicholson, and C. Guyer. Can quantitative analyses of morphology help us define species differences among closely-related lineages of Norops? Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles Annual Meeting. Lawrence, KS.

2015 - Savage, D.*, J. Phillips, K. Nicholson, C. Guyer, and J. Deitloff. Morphological differentiation in Norops humilis lineages of Costa Rica. Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles Annual Meeting. Lawrence, KS. (poster)

2015 - Savage, D.*, J. Whitmer*, and J. Deitloff. Morphological descriptions of new species in the Norops humilis species group. Celebration of Scholarship, Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania. (Poster )

2015 - Savage, D.*, J. Whitmer*, and J. Deitloff. Morphological descriptions of new species in the Norops humilis species group. Annual Meeting for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania University Biologists. Indiana, PA. (Poster)

2014 - Hibbard, B., J. Deitloff, L. Meihls, and A. Gassmann. Refuge techniques for low-dose rootworm transgenic events: A futile exercise? Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting. Portland, OR.

2014 - Deitloff, J., S. Graham, C. Floyd*, and J. Wooten. Head morphology and food use in two species of cryptic and co-occurring Plethodon salamanders. Conference on Plethodontid Salamanders. Tulsa, OK.

2014 - Hibbard, B., J. Deitloff, L. Meihls, and A. Gassmann. Laboratory selection of resistance to Cry3Bb1, mCry3a, eCry3.1Ab, and Cry34/35Ab1 transgenic corn and an experimental evaluation of refuge techniques. North Central Branch Meeting of the Entomological Society of America. Des Moines, IA. 

2013 - Deitloff, J., S. Graham, and C. Floyd*. Head morphology and food use in two species of cryptic and co-occurring Plethodon salamanders. Joint meetings of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists. Albuquerque, NM.

2012 - Deitloff, J., S. Graham, and M. Alcorn*. Courtship and Mate Guarding Behavior in Eurycea aquatica and Eurycea cirrigera. World Congress of Herpetology. Vancouver, BC, Canada.

2011 - Deitloff, J., C. Guyer, K. Nicholson, J. Phillips*. Hemipenes vs. dewlaps: which morphological characters can be used to delineate species in anoles? Joint meetings of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists. Minneapolis, MN.

*indicates undergraduate author/presenter

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