Caryn C.  Vaughn
Presidential Professor of Biology

Phone: (405)325-4034/5959
Fax: (405)325-6202


Dr. Vaughn's Web Page

Caryn C. VaughnCurrent Research Interests and Subject Areas Available for Graduate Research

My research interests are in the areas of freshwater ecology and conservation biology. Within these two broad areas my students and I are pursuing a variety of basic and applied ecological questions using benthic organisms as models. Much of my recent work focuses on freshwater mussels, a group where 70% of the North American species are considered threatened. Mussels are keystone species in many rivers and their catastrophic decline may lead to the decline of other faunas and the alteration of river ecosystem processes. In my research I am combining experimental and comparative approaches to examine the functional role of mussels in rivers, to determine the mechanisms underlying their distribution and abundance, and to quantify the ecosystem services they provide.

To learn more about this research, visit Dr. Vaughn's web page.

Curriculum Vitae


Ph.D., University of Oklahoma

M.S., University of Oklahoma

B.S., University of Oklahoma




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Recent publications:

  • Atkinson, C.L., C.C. Vaughn, K.J. Forshay and J.T. Cooper. 2013. Aggregated filter-feeding consumers alter nutrient limitation Consequences for ecosystem and community dynamics. Ecology, in press.

  • Atkinson, C.L., J.P. Julian and C.C. Vaughn. 2012. Scale-dependent longitudinal patterns in mussel communities. Freshwater Biology 57:2272-2289.

  • Allen, D.C., C.C. Vaughn, J.F. Kelly, J.T. Cooper and M.H. Engel. 2012. Bottom-up biodiversity effects increase resource subsidy flux between ecosystems. Ecology 93:2165-2174.

  • Vaughn, C.C. 2012. Life history traits and abundance can predict local colonization and extinction rates of freshwater mussels. Freshwater Biology 57:982-992.

  • Spooner, D.E. and C.C. Vaughn. 2012. Species traits and environmental gradients interact to govern primary production in freshwater mussel communities. Oikos 121:403-416.

  • Spooner, D.E., C.C. Vaughn and H.S. Galbraith. 2012. Species traits and environmental conditions govern the relationship between biodiversity effects across trophic levels. Oecologia 168:533-548.

  • Allen, D.C. and C.C. Vaughn. 2011. Density-dependent biodiversity effects on physical habitat modification by freshwater bivalves. Ecology 95:1013-1019.

  • Galbraith, H.S. and C.C. Vaughn. 2011. Effects of reservoir management on the condition and reproductive traits of downstream mussel populations. River Research and Applications 27:193-201.

  • Galbraith, H.S., D.E. Spooner and C.C. Vaughn. 2010. Synergistic effects of regional climate patterns and local water management on freshwater mussel communities. Biological Conservation 143:1175-1183

  • Vaughn, C.C. 2010. Biodiversity losses and ecosystem function in freshwaters: emerging conclusions and research directions. BioScience 60:25-35.




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