Paige Kulzer

M.Sc. Student

Office Location

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology

1630 Linden Drive

Madison, WI 53706-1598


Growing up on a small hobby farm in central Minnesota, it was inevitable that I developed a fascination with the wildlife in my backyard. While I’ll be the first to admit that I was unsure if I would ever get to see this fascination work itself into my career, I’ve always been passionate about the conservation of biodiversity. And, after developing an interest in applying computational biology to the genetic and genomic data of a wide variety of endangered species in college, I can happily say that I find myself researching just that.

My current molecular research with the Peery Lab focuses on the conservation of California spotted owls, barred owls, marbled murrelets, blanding’s turtles, and snapping turtles. This involves using double digest RADseq for SNP discovery to both analyze the population structure and diversity of the California spotted owl, and to investigate kinship, introgression, and the demographics of the barred owl. My research also involves constructing MiSeq libraries from various blood, fecal, and ocean water samples. I will use subsequent bioinformatic analyses to characterize the diet and population structure of the marbled murrelet, as well as to explore within-site associations between environmental gradients and adaptive genetic variation of blanding’s and snapping turtles.



B.S. Biology and Environmental Sciences | University of Wisconsin – Madison, 2020

Kryshak, N.F., Fountain, E.D., Hofstadter, D.F., Dotters, B.P., Roberts, K.N., Wood, C.M., Kelly, K.G., Schwarcz, I.F., Kulzer, P.J., Wray, A.K. and Kramer, H.A., 2022. DNA metabarcoding reveals the threat of rapidly expanding barred owl populations to native wildlife in western North America. Biological Conservation, 273, p.109678. 

Byer, N.W., Fountain, E.D., Reid, B.N., Miller, K., Kulzer, P.J. and Peery, M.Z., 2021. Land use and life history constrain adaptive genetic variation and reduce the capacity for climate change adaptation in turtles. BMC genomics, 22(1), pp.1-16. 

Zhang, Y., Serate, J., Xie, D., Gajbhiye, S., Kulzer, P., Sanford, G., Russell, J.D., McGee, M., Foster, C., Coon, J.J. and Landick, R., 2020. Production of hydrolysates from unmilled AFEX-pretreated switchgrass and comparative fermentation with Zymomonas mobilis. Bioresource Technology Reports, 11, p.100517. 

Zhang Y, Serate J, Xie D, Gajbhiye S, Kulzer P, Sanford G, Russell JD, McGee M, Foster C, Coon JJ, Landick R. Production of hydrolysates from unmilled AFEX-pretreated switchgrass and comparative fermentation with Zymomonas mobilis. Bioresource Technology Reports. 2020 Sep 1;11:100517.


Fountain, E.D., Kulzer, P.J., Golightly, R.T., Rivers, J.W., Pearson, S.F., Raphael, M.G., Betts, M.G., Nelson, S.K., Roby, D.D., Kryshak, N.F., Schneider, S. and Peery, M.Z. In Review. Characterizing the diet of a threatened seabird, the Marbled Murrelet, using high-throughput sequencing. Marine Ecology Progress Series

Kulzer, P.J., Fountain, E.D., Jones, G.M. and Peery, M.Z. In Progress. Utilizing genomic methods to characterize the recent and historical demographics of a cold- and old-forest- adapted species, the spotted owl. Molecular Ecology