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Steve K. Windels

Professional title

Research Associate


I am currently a wildlife biologist for Voyageurs National Park, MN (U.S. National Park Service) but I am also involved in projects outside the purview of my NPS job. My research interests center around wildlife ecology and management, with particular interests in foraging ecology and space use of birds and mammals, predator-prey interactions, and wildlife conservation in protected areas.  I am currently working on several projects related to the ecology of beavers, moose, and wolves in northern Minnesota.  I am also working on projects related to climate change adaptation planning in northern forests, top-down effects of bald eagles on other bird species, and the potential role of muskrats in invasive species management.

Graduate Faculty, Integrated Biological Sciences, University of Minnesota-Duluth, 2016-present


  • PhD, Wildlife Ecology, Michigan Technological University, 2008
  • MS, Range and Wildlife Management, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, 1999
  • BS, Wildlife Management, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, 1996

Recent Publications

Carstensen, M., J.H. Giudice, E.C. Hildebrand, J. P. Dubey, J. Erb, D. Stark, J. Hart, S. Barber-Meyer, L.D. Mech, S.K. Windels, and A.J. Edwards. In Press. Serological survey of diseases of free-ranging gray wolves (Canis lupus) in Minnesota. Journal of Wildlife Diseases.

Gable, T.D., S.K. Windels, and J.G. Bruggink. In Press. Estimating biomass of berries consumed by wolves. Wildlife Society Bulletin.

Olson, B.O., S.K. Windels, R.A. Moen, and N.P. McCann. In Press. Moose modify bedsites in response to high temperatures. Alces.

Gable, T.D., S.K. Windels, J.G. Bruggink, and A.T. Homkes. 2016. Where and how wolves kill beavers. PLoS One 11 (12).

McCann, N.P., R.A. Moen, S.K. Windels, and T. Harris. 2016. Identifying thermal refugia for a cold-adapted mammal facing climate change. Wildlife Biology 22:228-237.

Smith, J.B., S.K. Windels, T. Wolf, R. Klaver, and J.L. Belant. 2016. Do transmitters affect fitness indices of American beavers (Castor canadensis)? Wildlife Biology 22:117-123.

Street, G.M., J. Fieberg, A.R. Rodgers, M. Carstensen, R.Moen, S.A. Moore, S.K. Windels, and J. Forester. 2016. Habitat functional response mitigates reduced foraging opportunity across bioclimatic gradients: implications for animal fitness and space use.  Landscape Ecology Early Online.

Tyser, R., K. Rolfus, J. Wiener , S.K. Windels, and T. Custer. 2016.  Mercury concentrations in eggs of red-winged blackbirds and tree swallows breeding in Voyageurs National Park, USA.  Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology 71:16-25.

Windels, S.K., and J.L Belant. 2016. Performance of tail-mounted transmitters on American beavers Castor canadensis in a northern climate. Wildlife Biology 22:124-129.

Windels, S.K., T. Pittman, T. Grubb, L.H. Grim, and B.W. Bowerman. 2016. Bald eagle predation on double-crested cormorant and herring gull eggs. Journal of Raptor Research 71:16-25.

Johnston, C.L., and S.K. Windels. 2015.  Using beaver works to estimate colony activity in boreal landscapes.  Journal of Wildlife Management 79:1072-1080.