Casey Burton ’24


Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Project Title

Developing Metrics for Community-scale Biodiversity Restoration and Management

I interned as a land steward for Friends of Princeton Open Spaces (FOPOS). My co-interns and I worked to increase pollinator habitats and remove invasive plant species. We also collected data that FOPOS needs to apply for the Natural Climate Solutions Grant, which would be used to work on restoring a part of the park called Community Park North. For my own research, I laid the groundwork for future studies on how turtle and insect biodiversity are changing at the Princeton Mountain Lakes Nature Reserve following significant invasive species removal. I collected trial data and tested various methods of data retrieval so that this data could be compared to past and future studies pertaining to species abundance and diversity in comparison to the health of the restoration site. I also planned multiple public engagement events including an “iNaturalist BioBlitz Insect” event, a nighttime moth-sighting event, and I created routes for future turtle sighting events that will include the public.

Internship Year


Project Category

Biodiversity and Conservation


Friends of Princeton Open Spaces (FOPOS) - Princeton, New Jersey


Anna Corichi, Director, Natural Resources and Stewardship, FOPOS; Andy Dobson, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University; Annarie Lyles, Trustee, FOPOS