Hanna Innocent

Mentor: Dr. Samantha Wisely
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
"After getting my bachelor's degree I plan on attending graduate school and majoring in ecology. I want a research orientated career because I love how research gives people the ability to find a problem and solve it. I am very passionate about conservation and plan to one day become a field ecologist over seas."


Wildlife Ecology and Conservation



Research Interests

  • Conservation
  • Mammals
  • Wildlife

Academic Awards

  • Emerging Scholars Program 2015-2016
  • Treasure Coast Gator Club Scholarship 2015
  • Maestro Award 2014


  • UF Golden Key Honor Society
  • Exotic Animal Club
  • Mentor UF


  • Humane Society of St. Lucie County
  • Mantee Conservation Center
  • Mentor UF

Hobbies and Interests

  • Playing Music
  • Listening to Music
  • Trying New Food

Research Description

Modeling the Expansion of Cattle Egrets in North America
Migratory birds have the ability to globally transport pathogens such as West Nile Virus and Avian Influenza Virus that affect human, livestock and wildlife health. Cattle egrets are a bird species that expanded from Africa to South America in the 1930’s and to North America by 1960. Populations are increasing their distribution and have established migratory corridors within the Americas. Natural history collections and organized public surveys such as the breeding bird survey are used to document the arrival of species and better understand species distributions. We propose to survey natural history collections and avian distribution databases to create a comprehensive catalogue of occurrence data for cattle egrets through time across the continent. These data will be used to model the current species distribution and predict future distribution based on environmental factors.