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University of Nevada, Reno

Doctoral Candidate – Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology

Advisor: Matthew L. Forister

2018 – Present

University of California, Irvine

Bachelor of Science – Earth System Science

Bachelor of Science – Ecology and Evolution

2011 – 2015

Grants, Scholarships, and awards

GCA Centennial Pollinator Fellowship ($2,500)                              


Hitchcock Fellowship ($13,300)

Jerry and Betty Wilson Scholarship ($4,000)



Joan Mosenthal DeWind Award ($5,000)


Ron Leuschner Memorial Fund for Research on the Lepidoptera ($500)


Ben & Beatrice Edwards Biology Scholarship ($1,200)

2020 – 2021

Outstanding Graduate Student Scholarship ($500)


Graduate Research Fellowship Program (Honorable Mention)



Forister, M.L., Halsch, C.A., Nice, C.C., Fordyce, J.A., Dilts, T.E., Oliver, J.C., Prudic, K.L., Shapiro, A.M., Wilson, J.K., and Glassberg, J. (2021) Community scientists see fewer butterflies across the warming and drying landscapes of the American West. Science 371: 1042-1045 PDF

Halsch, C.A., Shapiro, A.M., Fordyce, J.A., Nice, C.C., Thorne, J.H., Waetjen, D.P., and Forister, M.L. (2021) Insects and recent climate change. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 118: e2002543117 PDF

Halsch, C.A., Code, A., Hoyle, S.M., Fordyce, J.A., Baert, N., and Forister, M.L. (2020)  Pesticide contamination of milkweeds across the agricultural, urban and open spaces of low elevation Northern California. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 8 PDF

Halsch, C.A., Shapiro, A.M., Thorne, J.H., Waetjen, D.P., and Forister, M.L. (2020) A winner in the Anthropocene: changing host plant distribution explains geographic range expansion in the gulf fritillary butterfly. Ecological Entomology 45:652-662 PDF

Kimball, S., Long, J.J., Ludovise, S., Ta, P., Schmidt, K.T., Halsch, C.A., et al. (2019). Impacts of competition and herbivory on native plants in a community‐engaged, adaptively managed restoration experiment. Conservation Science and Practice 1:e122 PDF

Tamura, N., Lulow, M.E., Halsch, C.A., Major, M.R., Balazs, K.R., Austin, P., et al. (2017). Effectiveness of seed sowing techniques for sloped restoration sites. Restoration Ecology 25:942-952 PDF

Teaching experience

BIOL 750 – Research Design

Organized and led sessions that introduced graduate students to R coding and statistical analysis for ecological data.

Spring 2020, Spring 2021

EECB 751 – Philosophy of Science

Designed and implemented course on the philosophy of science, with a focus on ecology, evolution, and conservation biology.

Fall 2020

BIOL 437 – Entomology

Organized and led labs on insect identification and taxonomy.

Spring 2019

Crystal Cove Conservancy, Newport Beach, CA

Designed and implemented citizen science education programs for K-12 students in partnership with California State Parks and University of California Irvine researchers.

Spring 2016 – Spring 2018

Volunteering and Public Outreach

Board member – Nevada Bugs and Butterflies

Co-President – Nerd Nite, Reno, Community Engagement and Lecture Series

President – Plant-Animal Interactions Club





Halsch, C.A., Shapiro, A.M., Forister, M.L. 2020. Understanding global change and butterflies with western North America’s longest-running monitoring study. Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting (virtual).

Halsch, C.A., Shapiro, A.M., Forister, M.L. 2019. The Spatial and Temporal Story of the Expanding Gulf Fritillary Butterfly. The Lepidopterist’s Society Annual Meeting, Davis, CA.


Halsch, C.A., Shapiro, A.M., Forister, M.L. 2019.  An Expanding Fritness Landscape: Minimum Temperatures, Host Plant Distribution, and the Expansion of the Gulf Fritillary. Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting, St. Louis, MO.

Journal Reviews

Ecological Applications

Journal of Biogeography

Journal of Insect Conservation




Annals of the Entomological Society of America


Ecological Entomology


Global Change Biology


Annals of the Entomological Society of America


Landscape Ecology