Curriculum Vitae

 

Troy D. Sparks




1616 N. Main, Apt A4

Rushville, IN  46173

Phone: 812-614-8491

 

Email:   sparkst@usaonline.com
Web:
http://www.sparksllewellinsetters.com/troy.html

 

 

References

 

·                     Dr. William E. Evans, Professor Emeritus Texas A&M University and Notre Dame University, South Bend, IN.  574-271-2273; evans1930@sbcglobal.net

 

·                     J. Logan Respess, Natural Resource Extension Agent, Texas Cooperative Extension, Aransas County, Rockport, TX.  361-790-0103; l-respess@tamu.edu

 

·                     James E. Miller, Research/Outreach Scientist, Wildlife & Fisheries, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS.  662-325-2619; jmiller@ext.msstate.edu

 

·                     Dr. Greg Stunz, Professor Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi, Department of Physical & Life Sciences, Corpus Christi, TX.  361-825-3254; greg.stunz@mail.tamucc.edu

 

·                     Dr. Dale Rollins, Professor and Wildlife Specialist, Texas Agricultural Extension Service, Texas A&M University, San Angelo, TX.  325-653-4576;  d-rollins@tamu.edu

 

 

 

Education

 

1997:  Texas A&M University, Masters of Science in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences. Committee Chairs: Dr. William E. Evans, WFSC, TAMU, Galveston, TX, and Dr. William E. Grant, WFSC, College Station, TX.

 

May 1990:  East End Educational Field Station, East End, Grand Cayman Island, British West Indies (BWI).

 

Summer 1989:  Oregon Institute of Marine Biology, University of Oregon, Charleston, OR.

 

1990:  Indiana University (IU), B.S. with Honors in Biology, Bloomington, IN.

 

Present: Texas A&M University, PhD student in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences. Committee Chairs: Dr. Dale Rollins, TAMU/TAES, San Angelo, TX, and Dr. William E. Evans, WFSC, TAMU, Galveston, TX/South Bend IN.  Currently, I’ve moved to my home state of Indiana due to a family emergency.  I am on a “Leave of Absence”, and it is my hope to finish “in absentia”.

 

 

 

Federal Work Experience

 

Feb. 1999-Jan. 2000:  John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellow to the Office of Habitat Conservation at the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). I worked on Essential Fish Habitat issues as defined by the Sustainable Fisheries Act (1996) as amended to the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.  I remained a PhD student at TAMU "on loan" to the Federal Government.  My Fellowships in Washington DC, have afforded me the opportunity to work the political side of various wildlife management, conservation, and habitat issues.  I have attended high level briefings with various members of Congress, NGOs, and Federal wildlife services.   Additionally, I know the importance of properly communicating technical information to the general public though both publication and presentation.  Advisor:  Thomas Bigford, Habitat Protection Division Chief, NMFS, Silver Springs, MD.  301-713-4300 ext. 131.

 

Spring 1995:  Public Policy Intern, Environment and Natural Resources Division (ENR), Congressional Research Service (CRS). Researched and wrote CRS Report for Congress: Acoustic Thermometry of Ocean Climate: Marine Mammal Issues (95-603 ENR).  This brief focused on take and harassment issues with respect to marine mammals outline in the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Endangered Species Act.  I remained a Masters student at TAMU "on loan" to the Federal Government.   Advisor:  Eugene H. Buck, Senior Analyst in Natural Resources Policy, ENR Policy Division, Washington DC.  202-707-7262.

 

Sample writing:  Acoustic Thermometry of Ocean Climate: Marine Mammal Issues.:  (http://www.ncseonline.org/NLE/CRSreports/Marine/mar2.cfm?&CFID=10045867&CFTOKEN=25187060).  Congressional Research Service (CRS) report that I researched and wrote for Congress during my Public Policy Internship.  This report focused on ‘take’ and ‘harassment’ issues within the Marine Mammal Protection Act and Endangered Species Act.  (Note: While my advisor's name, Gene Buck, is on the report, the first footnote explains my role. It is CRS policy that reports be published under the senior advisor's name, even though it is the intern's work.). 

 

 

Work Experience

 

August 2004-present:  Substitute teacher for Rush County School System.  Duties included the instruction of junior high and high school students in the fields of science, math, English, and social studies.  Advisor:  Ms. Martin, BRMS, Rushville, IN.  765-932-2968. 

 

Additionally, during this time period, I was a full time youth minister volunteer with the American Baptist Youth foundation at the First Baptist Church, Rushville, IN.  Duties included instruction during bi-weekly Bible study and devotionals, and advisor during youth outings and conferences.  I have also been a part time youth swim coach for Greensburg Junior High and Greensburg Area Summer Youth Swim Programs.  Advisor:  Katie Baker Sparks, Youth Minister, First Baptist Church, Rushville, IN.  765-932-2153.

 

August 2005-present:  Strength Instructor (part-time) at Decatur County YMCA.  Duties included instruction in the proper use of strength and cardio vascular training equipment.  Advisor:  Deena Hamer, YMCA Training Coordinator, YMCA, Greensburg, IN.  812-336-9622.

 

May 2004-July 2004:  Sea Turtle/Dolphin Oil Platform Observer, NMFS, Galveston, TX.  Duties included overseeing Incidental Take Statements as well as enforcing provisions in both the Endangered Species Act (Section 7(b)(4)) and the Marine Mammal Protection Act (Section 216).   I acted as a liaison to salvage, oil, helicopter, and diving companies to ensure provisions of the aforementioned Acts were implemented.  I was responsible for implementing visual observations from vessels, platforms and helicopters prior to decommissioned oil platform detonation and removal.  Additional duties were to ensure appropriate dive, vessel, and helicopter surveys were conducted prior to and after detonation.  Additionally, I was responsible for completing and filing the appropriate paperwork as well as ensuring the appropriate explosives and levels were used.  Advisor:  Dr. William E. Evans, MARB, TAMUG, Galveston, TX/South Bend, IN.  574-271-2273.

 

Sept. 2003- April 2004:  Graduate Research Assistant, Texas Agricultural Extension Service, Galveston, TX.  Duties included research, data analyses, and writing.  Additionally, I assisted in various outreach conservation and education programs for private landowners and NGOs (Quail Unlimited, Pheasants Forever, and Eli Lilly Corp.) with respect to ‘in-the-field’ and slide presentations on habitat management and aspects of the Farm Bill.  I have become acquainted with various members of the waterfowl and upland bird community (e.g. IDNR, TPWD, NRCS, TAES, Kleberg Institute, etc…) through conferences, outreach programs (e.g. Bobwhite Brigade), and land owner workshops (e.g. Quail Appreciation Days).   These contacts and management templates serve as a solid foundation for game bird management and outreach programs.  I am familiar with GIS and Micro Soft Office programs.  Advisor:  Dr. Dale Rollins, TAES, San Angelo, TX.  325-653-4576

 

Sept. 2001- Sept. 2003:  Quail Biologist, Armendaris Ranch, Truth Or Consequences, NM.  Duties included trapping and banding of over 600 scaled quail.   I used various research techniques to assess winter survival and nesting success for scaled quail in areas with and without grazing pressure; and areas with and without supplemental feed.  These techniques included radio collaring and daily tracking of hen quail movements to assess home range, habitat use, covey dynamics, mortality, and nesting success.  Other duties included abundance and ecosystem methods used as part of the Texas Quail Index (an outreach project to private land owners); such as call count surveys, artificial nest depredation monitoring, predator scent station monitoring, and raptor count surveys.  Also, remote video cameras were used to assess the use of supplemental feeders (e.g. whole-grain milo and food blocks) and drinkers (e.g. guzzlers).  Advisor:  Dr. Dale Rollins, TAES, San Angelo, TX.  325-653-4576

 

May-Aug. 2001:  Research Assistant.  Bobwhite quail, Colinus virginianus, biologist, Chaparrosa Ranch, La Pryor, TX.  Duties included habitat/ecosystem management techniques to determine grazing effects on bobwhite quail habitat.  These techniques included call count surveys, ‘dummy nest’ transects and monitoring, and predator scent station monitoring on the Chaparrosa Ranch, La Pryor, TX, and the Kerr Wildlife Management Area, Hunt TX.  My research on the Kerr Wildlife Management Area was directed toward an integrated management approach for bobwhite quail with respect to important bird species such as the Rio Grande turkey, and endangered species such as the golden-cheeked warbler and the black-capped vireo.  Duties also included the initial development of the “Team Quail” web site: http://teamquail.tamu.edu/  Advisor:  Dr. Dale Rollins, TAES, San Angelo, TX.  325-653-4576

 

Jan.-May 2001:  Teaching Assistant.  Marine Fisheries Management.  Department of Marine Biology (MARB), Texas A&M University at Galveston (TAMUG).   Duties included instruction in the basic knowledge of marine ichthyology, biology of fishes and biological oceanography related to applied aspects of marine fisheries sciences. Emphasis placed on management techniques applicable to population models with respect to tidal-influenced inland water, estuaries, and oceans.  Advisor:  Dr. Greg Stunz, Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi, Department of Physical & Life Sciences.  361-825-3254.

 

Aug.-Dec. 2000:  Teaching Assistant. Marine Ecology, MARB, TAMUG. Duties included laboratory instruction and review of the research techniques for marine systems.  Examination of the relationship between various marine environments and their inhabitants; intra- and inter-specific relationships between organisms; structure and function among marine communities. Laboratory emphasized study of living material and natural habitats in the Gulf of Mexico.   Advisor:  Dr. Jay Rooker, MARB, TAMUG, Galveston, TX.  409-740-4744.

 

July 2000:  East Texas Bobwhite Brigade Counselor.  Lead a group of 13 - 17 year old students in an intensive training on quail biology and management.  Areas of focus included instruction in quail anatomy, biology, habitat management, population dynamics, conservation, and hunting techniques.  Students were also instructed in general wildlife ecology, photography, entomology, botany, firearm safety, and leadership skills.  Piney Woods Conservation Camp, Lufkin, TX.  Advisor:  Scotty Parsons, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, Nacogdoches, TX.  936- 569-1632.

 

May-Aug. 2000:  Seacamp Instructor.  Instructed students ages from 10 – 16 in general marine ecology and research techniques.  Field trips investigated the “hands-on” ecology of salt-water marshes, sand dunes, and the Galveston Bay estuary system as well as elements of physical, and chemical oceanography.  Students were instructed in the function and morphology of marine fishes and birds.  Advisor:  Dr. Judy Wern, Executive Director Educational Outreach, TAMUG, Galveston, TX.  409-740-4730.

 

Jan. 1992-Dec. 1995; Sept. 1997-Aug. 1998:  Bioacoustic Research Assistant for GULFCET I and II. Duties included operation and maintenance of a towed linear array and associated recording equipment to record underwater vocalizations of Cetaceans in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Data analysis included the distribution, habitat preference, and ecology of sperm whales via acoustic, oceanographic, and satellite altimetric data collection. I was also responsible for implementation and determining harassment and ‘takes’ of various species of marine mammals and sea turtles as outlined in the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act.  This project consisted of two week cruises in April, August, October and November 1992, February, June, August, and December 1993, August 1994, October 1996, and August 1997. All cruises were aboard the University-National Oceanographic Laboratory Systems' (UNOLS) R/V Pelican, Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON), Cocodrie, LA, and the R/V Gyre, TAMU, Galveston, TX.  Advisor:  Dr. William E. Evans, MARB, TAMUG, Galveston, TX/South Bend, IN.  574-271-2273.

 

Aug.-Dec. 1998: Teaching Assistant. Biology of Marine Mammals, MARB, TAMUG. Duties included laboratory instruction and review of the research techniques, and the morphology and function of various Families of threatened and endangered marine mammals.  Advisor:  Dr. Bernd Wursig, MARB, TAMUG, Galveston, TX.  409-740-4413.

 

Jan. 1996- Aug. 97:  Bioacoustic Research Assistant and Chief Scientist. ONR project to determine the effects of tomographic, low-frequency signals on sperm whale (an endangered species protected by both the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act) behavior. Duties included the organization of field research, data collection, and staff. Additional duties included the development and testing of passive sonobuoys (radio and GPS) for tracking sperm whales in the Mississippi River Canyon, Gulf of Mexico. I was also responsible for implementation and determining harassment and ‘takes’ of various species of marine mammals and sea turtles as outlined in the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act.    Project consisted of a three week deployment (Aug.-Sept. 1996) to British Petroleum's MC109-A where daily small boat deployments and visual observations were made, and three weeks (Aug. 1997) aboard the UNOLS R/V Acadiana, LUMCON, Cocodrie, LA. in the Mississippi River Canyon, Gulf of Mexico. Advisor:  Dr. William E. Evans, MARB, TAMUG, Galveston, TX/South Bend, IN.  574-271-2273.

 

July 1995:  Consultant for National Geographic Society (NGS). Aided NGS in the location, identification, and radio tracking of sperm whales for "Crittercam" deployments in the Mississippi River Canyon, Gulf of Mexico. Work included small boat deployments and visual observations from British Petroleum's MC109-A petroleum production platform for two weeks, and Diamond Offshore Drilling platform (Ocean Valiant) in Texaco's MC292 lease for one week.  Advisor:  Dr. Randall Davis, MARB, TAMUG, Galveston, TX.  409-740-4712.

 

March 1992:  Marine Mammal Field Observation Training. Training with respect to endangered and threatened species of marine mammal and bird identification, survey techniques, and data collection. NMFS, Pascagoula Lab., Pascagoula, MS.  Advisor:  Dr. Randall Davis, MARB, TAMUG, Galveston, TX.  409-740-4712.

 

Jan.-May 1991:  Teaching Assistant. Natural History of the Vertebrates, WFSC, TAMU, College Station, TX. Duties included laboratory instruction and review of the morphology and function for various Orders of vertebrates.  Department Head:  Dr. Robert Brown, WFSC, TAMU, College Station, TX.  979-845-1261.

 

May-Aug. 1990:  Laboratory Assistant.  Biology Department, Indiana University.  Duties included general stock and equipment maintenance of the marine snail, Potamopyrgus antipodarum.  Advisor:  Dr. Curtis M. Lively.  Biology Department, IU, Bloomington, IN.  812-855-6284.

 

May 1990:  Biological survey team member. Biology Department, Indiana University. Duties included completing surveys on several coral reef sites in the Grand Cayman Islands, and supervision of the biological survey team. As supervisor, it was my responsibility to instruct team members on various survey techniques, and compile post-dive data for processing.  Advisor:  Dr. William Ruff, Biology Department, IU, Bloomington, IN.  812-855-6284.

 

Aug. 1989-May 90:  Undergraduate Research Assistant. Biology Department at Indiana University. Duties included the training and supervision of undergraduate research projects, and the genetic analysis of meiotic drive phenomena in the parasitic wasp, N. vitripennis.  Advisor:  Dr. Samuel W. Skinner, Biology Department, IU, Bloomington, IN.  812-855-6284.

 

 

 

 

Honors and Awards

 

1999: John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship from National-Sea Grant College Program.

 

1997: Endangered Species Research Permit Holder No. 1021, National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Washington DC.

 

1997: American Petroleum Institute Stipend Award Recipient.

 

1995: US Coast Guard and State of Texas small boat certification.

 

1995: Public Policy Intern, Environment and Natural Resources Division, Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress, Washington DC.

 

1990: B.S. with Departmental Honors in Biology, Indiana University.

 

1990: Undergraduate Research Award in Biology, Indiana University.

 

1989-90: Howard Hughes Undergraduate Research Initiative Grant., Indiana University.

 

1987 - 1990: Deans List, Indiana University.

 

 

Research Experience

 

2001-present:  PhD research focusing on the efficacy of supplemental feeding on winter survival and nesting success of scaled quail (Callipepla squamata) on Ted Turner's Armendaris Ranch, Truth Or Consequences, NM.  Funded via Turner Enterprises Inc. 

 

1998-2000:  GULFCET (Gulf of Mexico Cetaceans) II. Joint project between NMFS, and TAMU to assess the distribution, abundance, and habitat of marine mammals and birds along the Northeastern continental slope in the Gulf of Mexico. Program Manager: Dr. Randall Davis, TAMU, Galveston, TX. Funded via the National Biological Resource Division, U.S. Geological Survey, Department of Interior, Washington, DC.  

 

1995-97:  The Effects of Low-frequency Tomographic Signals on Sperm Whales (Chief Scientist). This project examined behavioral changes when sperm whales were exposed to underwater tomographic acoustic signals. Principle Investigators: Dr. Robert H. Benson, Center for Bioacoustics, TAMU, Corpus Christi, TX, and Dr. William E. Evans, Biological Oceanography, TAMU, Galveston, TX. Funded via the Office of Naval Research (ONR), Arlington, VA.

 

1992-95:  GULFCET I. Joint project between NMFS, TAMU, and Oregon State University assessed the distribution and abundance of marine mammals and birds along the Northwestern and Central continental slope in the Gulf of Mexico. Program Manager: Dr. Randall Davis, TAMU, Galveston, TX. Funded via the Minerals Management Service (MMS, Department of the Interior, contract no. 14-35-0001- 30619).  .  

 

July 1992:   Matagorda Texas Live Dolphin Captures. National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) project assessed health status of the Bottlenosed Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, along the Texas coast. Program Manager: Larry Hansen, NMFS, Miami, FL.

 

May 1990:  Undergraduate Marine Research Project. EEEFS, Grand Cayman, BWI, Coral Reef Biological Survey Team Member/Supervisor. Advisor: Dr. William Ruff, Indiana University.

 

1989-90:  Genetic Methods for Analysis of the PSR Chromosome in the Parasitic Wasp, Nasonia vitripennis. Independent Research Project, Indiana University. Advisor: Dr. Samuel W. Skinner, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN.

 

Summer 1989:  A Study of the Fecundity and Nesting Success of the Shore Acres Pelagic Cormorant, Phalacrocorax pelagicus, Colony. Independent Research Project, OIMB, University of Oregon. Advisor: Dr. Janet Hodder, University of Oregon, Charleston, OR.

 

 

Publications

 

Sparks, T.D.  2001.  The efficacy of  supplemental feeding of scaled quail in New Mexico.  Invited speaker.  2002 National Quail Unlimited Convention, Dallas TX.

 

Sparks, T.D., Norris, J.C., and Evans, W.E. 1998. Distributions of sperm whales in the Central and Northwestern Gulf of Mexico as determined from an acoustic survey: Implications for habitat characterization. Sharing Our Gulf Conference, Texas Sea Grant College Program, Texas A&M University, June, College Station, TX.

 

Leben, R.R., Smith, S.C., Biggs, D.C., Davis, R.W., and Sparks, T.D. 1998. A satellite altimetry toolbox for monitoring cetacean habitat in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. American Geophysical Union Ocean Sciences Meeting, February, San Diego, CA.

 

Sparks, T.D. 1997. Distributions of sperm whales along the continental slope in the northwestern and central Gulf of Mexico as determined from an acoustic survey. Masters Thesis, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX. 67pp.

 

Norris, J.C., Evans, W.E., Benson, R.H., and Sparks, T.D. 1996. Acoustic surveys. In Distribution and abundance of cetaceans in the north-central and western Gulf of Mexico: Final Report. Edited by R. W. Davis, and G. S. Fargion. OCS Study/MMS 96-0027. U.S. Dept. of the Interior, Minerals Mgmt. Service, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, New Orleans, LA. pp. 207-265.

 

Buck, E.H., and Sparks, T.D. 1995. Acoustic thermometry of ocean climate: Marine mammal issues. U.S. Library of Congress, Congressional Research Service. CRS Report No. 95-603 ENR. March, Washington DC. 20pp.

 

Norris, J.C., Evans, W.E., and Sparks, T.D. 1995. The use of passive towed sonar arrays for surveying marine mammals. 129th meeting of the Acoustical Society of America, May, Washington DC.

 

Norris, J.C., Benson, R.H., Evans, W.E., Duncan, M.E., Sparks, T.D. 1993. The acoustics of odontocete cetacean signals recorded in the Northwestern Gulf of Mexico. Tenth Biennial Conference of the Biology of Marine Mammals, November, Galveston, TX.

 

Dudzinski, K.M., Frohoff, T.G., Shoda, L.K.M., and Sparks, T.D. 1991. The pine warbler song repertoire: A preliminary description and analysis. Bull. Texas Ornith. Soc. 24(2): 30-38.

 

Sparks, T.D. and Skinner, S.W. 1990. Genetic methods for analysis of the PSR chromosome in the parasitic wasp, Nasonia vitripennis.* Indiana University Undergraduate Research Symposium. Indiana University, Bloomington, IN.

 

*Presentation at the 1990 State of Indiana Undergraduate Research Conference.

Butler University, Indianapolis, Indiana.

 

 

Professional Organizations and Extra Curricular Activities

 

2004-05 Vice President, the National Llewellin Gun Dog Club.

 

2005 American Heart Assoc. CPR, AED, and First Aid Certified.

 

2005  Pheasants Forever.

 

2001-04 Quail Unlimited.

 

1998-04 National Wild Turkey Federation.

 

1997-04 Ducks Unlimited.

 

1991-99 Society for Marine Mammalogy.

 

1992-99 Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network Volunteer, Galveston, Texas.

 

1994-99 Acoustical Society of America, American Institute of Physics.

 

1993-96; 2003-04 Galveston Graduate Student Association, TAMU, Galveston.

 

1993 American Cetacean Society, Scientific Review Committee, Galveston TX

 

1991-92; 2001-04 Association of Graduate Students in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences,

TAMU, College Station, TX.

 

1987-90 Indiana University Scuba Club, Bloomington, IN.

 

 


Email Me: sparkst@usaonline.com

Revised: 08/17/05



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