Ally Davidge

Ally Davidge

Graduate Teaching Assistant, Ornithology Collections Assistant

University of Colorado, Denver/Denver Museum of Nature and Science

Meet Ally

Ally Davidge (She/Her) is a Master’s student in the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Colorado, Denver and an industry professional with seven years of applied field experience.

She is currently a Graduate Teaching Assistant leading Honors General Biology labs. She also places cameras for the Urban Wildlife Information Network efforts to collect Denver urban wildlife data. In addition, she is authoring a publication with the Reinke Lab, (Northeastern Illinois University) focusing on evolutionary ecology and freshwater mite communities. She volunteers with the Denver Museum of Nature and Science as an ornithology collections assistant and digital archivist to learn more about the concepts of evolution.

Ally is a certified Associate Wildlife Biologist with The Wildlife Society and belongs to the Women in Wildlife Working Group as well as the Out in the Field initiative. She believes in helping more diverse voices be heard in STEM. Ally is currently studying urban Cooper’s hawks and their spatial requirements in Denver for her Master’s thesis.


  • Evolutionary ecology
  • Urban ecology
  • Adaptation to novel/extreme environments
  • Movement ecology
  • Phenology of raptor migration


  • Master's Student

    University of Colorado, Denver

  • BSc Wildlife and Fisheries Science, 2014

    Pennsylvania State University, University Park



Graduate Teaching Assistant

University of Colorado, Denver

Aug 2021 – Present Denver, Colorado
Oversee safe lab procedures. Assign grades to students. Administer a course-based undergraduate research experience cirriculum.

Research Assistant

University of Colorado, Denver

Jul 2020 – Oct 2020 Denver, Colorado
Seasonal Appointment: Project: Collect forest habitat use and detection data for Clark’s Nutcraker in Yellowstone National Park. Analyze data and produce detailed literature review of power analysis releated to nutcracker detection probability.

Ornithology Collections Assistant

Denver Museum of Nature and Science

Feb 2020 – Present Denver, Colorado
Volunteer Directive: Assist with specimen acquisition, cataloguing, pin specimens, general collection care and maintenance.

Population Dynamics Lab Assistant

Pennsylvania State University

Oct 2019 – May 2020 University Park, Pennsylvania
Project: Data management and validation related to Salamander Population and Adaptation Research Collaboration Network (SPARC Net).

Painted Turtle Research Assistant

Northeastern Illinois University

Jun 2019 – Jun 2021 Lac Courte Oreilles Lake, Wisconsin
Seasonal Position: Projects: Mite diversity as a water quality indicator (Project lead), long-term mark-recapture study of painted turtles (Chrysemys picta), on Lac Courte Oreilles Lake, Wisconsin (Data Collection).

Visiting Bander

Cape May Raptor Banding Project

Nov 2018 – Nov 2021 Cape May, New Jersey
Seasonal Volunteer Directive: Cared for lure birds, extracted raptors from net set, administered band, measured weight, age, sex, and species for all captures.

Lead Wildlife Rehabilitation Technician

Wild Friends-Best Friends Animal Sanctuary

May 2018 – Sep 2018 Kanab, Utah
Directive: Handled sick/injured raptors, small-large mammals, reptiles and amphibians. Led educational public tours and gave public presentations about department progress.

Condor Field Biologist

The Peregrine Fund

Oct 2017 – Jul 2018 Marble Canyon, Arizona
Permanent Full-Time Position: Projects: Portable X-ray fluorescence device for bone lead measurements of condors (Lead Handler, Data Collection), protocols for lead exposure, diagnosis, and treatment in California condors released in Arizona (Project Lead), tracking patterns of mortality in free-ranging California condors (Gymnogyps californianus) (Data Collection Lead), quantifying voluntary lead reduction efforts within the Northern Arizona range of the California condor (Outreach), utility of portable lead analyzers for wildlife conservation (Data Collection), bullet fragmentation and implications for lead exposure in avian scavengers (Data Collection and Outreach).

Raptor Banding Blind Lead

HawkWatch International

Aug 2017 – Nov 2019 2017 Chelan Ridge Washington, 2019 Manzano Mountain New Mexico
Seasonal Position: Projects: Morphological changes in American kestrels (Falco sparverius) at continental migration sites (Data Collection), spatial distribution of golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos) across North America (Data Collection), Fall 2017 & Fall 2019 raptor migration annual report (Data Collection Lead, Technical Manuscript Reviewer).

California Spotted Owl Wildlife Technician

University of Wisconsin, Madison

May 2017 – Aug 2017 Georgetown, California
Projects: Movement and occupancy data in a territorial species (Crew Lead), California Spotted Owl (Strix occidentalis occidentalis), habitat climate change risk assessment and management (Data Collection), assessment of tall tree cover in California spotted owl habitat (Data Collection), megafire site survey and scope of threats to old-forest species (Data Collection), California spotted owl territory occupancy in the Sierra Nevada: habitat associations and their implications for forest management (Data Collection), investigation into agenda-driven science in conservation (Data Collection).

Research Assistant

US Navy/San Diego Zoo Global-Institute for Conservation Research

Mar 2016 – Aug 2016 San Diego, California
Projects: Factors influencing California least tern, (Sterna antillarum browni) colony site selection (Data Collection and Analysis), mark re-sight/re-capture study looking at tern and Western snowy plover, (Charadrius alexandrinus nivosus) fecundity (Lead Bander), capture of nest predators for the protection of threatened and endangered shorebird species (Data Collection).

California Condor Monitoring Technician

US Fish and Wildlife Service/Great Basin Institute

Mar 2015 – Mar 2016 Ventura, California
Projects: Remote observation of California condor nesting behavior (Intern Lead), wing loading capacity of California condors (Data Collection Lead), supplementary feeding and endangered avian scavengers (Data Collection), lead exposure risk from trash ingestion by the endangered California condors (Data Collection), Ethogram evaluation of behavior in a reintroduced population of California condors (Data Collection), Outreach and environmental education for reintroduction programs (Outreach).

Volunteer Bander

US Geological Survey/Pennsylvania State University Extension

May 2013 – Nov 2019 The Arboretum, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania
Seasonal Volunteer Directive: Extracted songbirds from mist nets. Aged, sexed, and correctly identified species. Safely administered unique identification bands. Provide first time orientation for new student and community volunteers.

Research Assistant

Operation Wallacea/Iwokrama International Center for Rain Forest Conservation and Development

May 2012 – Aug 2012 Iwokrama, Guyana, South America
International Projects: Iwokrama International Center for Rain Forest Conservation and Development Annual Report 2012-2013 (Data Collection), collection of reptiles and amphibians across the Guiana Shield as a tool to better understand species diversity and endemism (Data Collection), dung beetle presence as indication of large predator presence (Data Collection), capture of Artibeus and other frugivorous bats within the Iwokrama Forest in Guyana, South America: inventory of dispersed seeds (Data Collection), bat specimen collection for Royal Ontario Museum (Data Collection).

Outdoor School Camp Counselor

Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center/ Pennsylvania State University Extension

Apr 2011 – May 2014 Petersburg, Pennsylvania
Volunteer Directive: Develop and administer educational lessons and activities designed to engage students in nature at a 5th grade level. Oversee outdoor learning for classes of 15-20 students.

Wildlife Rehabilitation and Rabies Vector Species Volunteer

Centre Wildlife Care

Mar 2011 – May 2014 Port Matilda, Pennsylvania
Volunteer Directive: Observed behavior and evaluated detained wildlife for potential for release. Participated in public outreach events, classroom visits, and handling trainings.

Active Projects

Long Term Consequences of Phenotypic Variation In Painted Turtles

Understanding pigmentation of painted turtles through a long-term mark re-capture study spear-headed by the Reinke Lab (Northeastern Illinois University). Ally performs field collection to support this project.

Clark’s Nutcracker Forest Habitat Use and Seed Resource Selection in Yellowstone National Park

Nutcrackers are resource driven foragers. Within Yellowstone National Park we are trying to determine which confier species are important to nutcrackers and how they use them during cone ripening season. Ally is a Graduate Research Assistant on this project tasked with collecting an analyzing the data.

Freshwater Mites as an Indicator of Water Quality

Freshwater mites are present in lakes and streams. They, like many other macroinvertebrates, can be an indicator of water quality. This project will investigate what water attirbutes can be associated with mites and why.

Stable Isotope Analysis and Painted Bunting Origin-Implications for International Pet Trade

Where do birds that end up in international pet trade come from? How do we know whether or not they have been legally obtained? What happens when a cute colorful songbird crosses a mosaic of different laws and regulations along its migratory route?

Urban Wildlife Information Network

A collaborative network of cities around the world participate in placing camera traps and audio recording units out four times a year to record urban wildlife. In Denver, that data is used to teach undegraduate students about research during intorductory biology lab.