James Herrera
Postdoctoral Associate

I am a postdoctoral associate with Dr. Charlie Nunn  at Duke University. We are working on combining my interests in community ecology with Dr. Nunn's specialty in infectious disease to explore how parasite species richness is related to behavioral and environmental factors across all primates and small mammals of Madagascar. Our work is leveraging Dr. Nunn's comprehensive Global Mammal Parasite Database , which compiles data on parasite species occurrence and prevalence for primates, carnivores, and hooved animals. We will explore novel questions in the co-evolution of primates and parasites to understand the socio-ecological factors that place species at risk of diseases. In addition, we are investigating patterns of disease transmission in small mammals of Madagascar, with on-going data collection in northeastern Madagascar. We have collected rodents, tenrecs, and shrews from six habitat types to screen for parasites. Thus far, we've collected data from over 500 animals and discovered at least five different species of nematode worms, collected over 4,000 ticks, fleas, and mites, and screened over 200 animals for the water-borne pathogen Leptospira , which is carried by small mammals and can be transmitted to people who drink the water.

Current Appointments & Affiliations

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