My research focuses broadly on the social and ecological behavior of wild primates. I am primarily interested in the strategies and signals of reproductive competition, and I incorporate behavioral, ecological, and acoustic methods in my research. I am also very interested in biological conservation, and understanding the ways that human activities influence the behavior and ecology of wild primates. I am excited to spend the next three years studying the diet and nutritional ecology of Bornean orangutans and supporting biodiversity conservation in Indonesia during my postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Erin Vogel. In addition to my work in Indonesia, I'm involved in another field-based project in Bolivia, where my collaborators and I are investigating the proximate and ultimate factors influencing cooperation in wild Weddell's saddleback tamarins (Saguinus fuscicolis weddelli). We are collecting morphological, genetic, and behavioral data in order to test adaptive hypotheses for the evolution of cooperative behaviors as well as the proximate factors influencing individual participation.
2012 Ph.D., Anthropological Sciences, Stony Brook University
Erb, WM, C Borries, NS Lestari, JK Hodges. Annual variation in ecology and reproduction of wild simakobu (Simias concolor).International Journal of Primatology. 33 (6): 1406-1419.
Erb, WM, C Borries, NS Lestari, T Ziegler. 2012. Demography of simakobu (Simias concolor) and the impact of human disturbance. American Journal of Primatology. 74 (6): 580-590.
Erb, WM, K Ossi-Lupo, G McCabe, D Fernández. 2011 Annual meeting of the American Society of Primatologists. Evolutionary Anthropology. 21 (1): 3-4.
Erb, WM. 2008. Conservation Small Grant Award Report: Behavioral ecology of simakobu monkeys (Simias concolor) in northern Siberut, Indonesia. ASP Bulletin. 32 (1): 8-10.
Erb, WM, EM St. Clair, M Jonas. 2006. From syntax to synapomorphies. Evolutionary Anthropology. 15 (4): 119-120.