About the Department

About the Department


The mission of the Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation at Virginia Tech is to significantly contribute to fish and wildlife resource conservation and management at state, national, and international levels through integrated programs in research, teaching, and engagement.


Recognized widely as one of the premier programs in North America addressing fish and wildlife issues of state, national and global concern, we in the Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation are passionate about natural resource conservation and management and about making a difference in how our society values sustainable natural resources. Through our commitment to excellence in research, teaching, and engagement we are training the next generation of leaders in natural resource conservation and management and influencing decisions and policy in Virginia, the nation, and the world.

Our Programs

We offer a Bachelor of Science degree in Fish and Wildlife Conservation with majors in Fish Conservation or Wildlife Conservation. At the graduate level we offer a Master of Science and a Doctor of Philosophy in Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences. All of our programs stress experiential learning and development of mentoring relationships between faculty and students. Our students and alumni can be found in leadership roles in state agencies and academic institutes in nearly all fifty states; in federal agencies in the US and abroad; and in many private companies.

Our Research

Our scientific expertise is wide-ranging, including behavioral ecology, population dynamics, physiology, ecotoxicology, disease ecology, human-wildlife conflicts, human dimensions of natural resource conservation, marine ecology and habitat-population interactions. Our wildlife faculty work with a wide variety of animals, from salamanders and turtles to bats, squirrels, shore birds, raptors, game birds, deer and large predators such as coyotes, bears and tigers. The interests of our fisheries faculty range from endangered Roanoke log perch and nongame fish communities to conservation aquaculture for imperiled freshwater mussels and management of large game fish such as muskellunge, blue catfish, and arapaima. Our work occurs in Virginia, throughout the United States and in many countries around the world, including Mexico, Belize, Brazil, Indonesia, Botswana, Ghana, and Madagascar.