Matthew Pyne

Matt Pyne in Rocky Mountain National Park

Assistant Professor of Biology

Office: 205-11 Hayes Biology Building

Phone: 409-880-7458


Curriculum vitae


2014 Ph.D. in Ecology, Colorado State University

2006 M.S. in Integrative Biology, Brigham Young University

2003 B.S. in Wildlife and Range Resources, Brigham Young University

Courses Taught:

Ecology (BIOL 4460/5460), Limnology (BIOL 4430/5430), Anatomy and Physiology (BIOL 2401), Graduate Seminar (BIOL 5110)

Research Interests:

My research interests lie in understanding the relationship between the distribution of aquatic organisms and the structure, climate, and hydrology of freshwater aquatic systems.  I aim to integrate statistical modeling and experimental research to better understand how aquatic communities are changing according climate change and anthropogenic influences.  I am particularly interested in exploring the relationships between aquatic insect traits and environmental gradients.  Current projects include:
  • Experimentally manipulating stream temperatures to measure how aquatic insects can alter life history characteristics to mitigate the effects of climate change. 
  • Predicting the future distribution of aquatic insect taxa in western U.S. streams from climate change scenarios using general linear models and thermal/flow tolerances.
  • Surveying the distribution of the brackish water clam, Rangia, and modeling its distribution in relation to salinity fluxes in the Neches River.
  • Developing statistical models to determine which hydrological variables best differentiate California streams classified according to geomorphology and level of anthropogenic disturbance.
  • Predicting the distribution of pitcher plants in the Big Thicket Preserve.

Selected Publications:

Pyne, M. I., D. M. Carlisle, C. P .Konrad, and E. D. Stein. 2017. Classification of California streams using combined deductive and inductive approaches: setting the foundation for analysis of hydrologic alteration. Ecohydrology: DOI: 10.1002/eco.1802

Pyne, M. I., and N. L. Poff. 2017. Vulnerability of stream community composition and function to projected thermal warming and hydrologic change across ecoregions in the western United States. Global Change Biology 23 (1): 77-93 (DOI: 10.1111/gcb.13437). PDF

Auerbach, D. A., N. L. Poff, R. R. McShane, D. M. Merritt, M. I. Pyne, and T. Wilding. 2012. Streams past and future: fluvial responses to rapid environmental change in the context of historical variation. Pages 232-245 in J. A. Wiens, G. D. Hayward, H. D. Safford, and C. Giffen, editors. Historical Environmental Variation in Conservation and Natural Resource Management. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., Hoboken, New Jersey.

Poff, N. L., M. I. Pyne, B. P. Bledsoe, C. C. Cuhaciyan, and D. M. Carlisle. 2010. Developing linkages between species traits and multiscaled environmental variation to explore vulnerability of stream benthic communities to climate change. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 29:1441-1458. PDF

Pyne, M. I., K. M. Byrne, K. A. Holfelder, L. Mcmanus, M. Buhnerkempe, N. Burch, E. Childers, S. Hamilton, G. Schroeder, and P. F. Doherty. 2010. Survival and breeding transitions for a reintroduced bison population: a multistate approach. Journal of Wildlife Management 74:1463-1471. PDF

Webb, C. T., J. A. Hoeting, G. M. Ames, M. I. Pyne, and N. L. Poff. 2010. A hierarchical and dynamic framework to advance traits-based theory and prediction in ecology.  Ecology Letters 13: 267-283. PDF

Pyne, M. I., R. B. Rader, and W. F. Christensen. 2007. Predicting local biological characteristics in streams: a comparison of landscape classifications.  Freshwater Biology 52:1302-1321. PDF