Peter May

Professor of Biology

Peter May is an expert in his very specific interests such as the ecology of rattlesnakes and box turtles. He also has a strong interest in nature photography.

  • PhD, zoology, University of Florida
  • MS, biology, George Mason University
  • BS, biology, George Mason University


Peter May


Peter May's interests are primarily in ecology and the behavior of terrestrial animals and plants. He's particularly interested in the biology of birds, snakes and insects. May's research experience includes work on insect parasitism, avian community ecology, butterfly feeding behavior and energetics, reproductive ecology of Passiflora incarnata, ecology of pigmy rattlesnakes and box turtles, and mobbing behavior of passerine birds. His hobbies also include wildlife and nature photography.

More About Peter May

Areas of Expertise

  • Florida birds and insects

Course Sampling

  • Introductory Biology II
  • Biological Basis of Behavior
  • Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy
  • Ornithology

  • Terrestrial ecology
  • Behavioral ecology of flowering plants, insects, reptiles and birds

  • May, P.G. and Farrell, T. M. 2012. "Growth Patterns of Dusky Pigmy Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus miliarius barbouri) from Central Florida." Herpetological Monographs 26: 58-79.
  • Farrell, T.M., May, P. G. and Andreadis, P. T. 2011. "Experimental Manipulation of Tail Color Does not Affect Foraging Success in a Caudal Luring Rattlesnake." Journal of Herpetology 45(3): 291-293.
  • Pilgrim, MA, Farrell, T. M., May, P. G., Vollman, M. R. and Seigel, R. A. 2011. "Secondary Sex Ratios in Six Snake Species." Copeia 2011, No. 4, 553-558.
  • Farrell, T.M., Pilgrim, M. A., Blihovde, W. B. and May, P. G. 2011. "The Herpetofauna of Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge, Florida." Southeastern Naturalist 10(4): 647-658.
  • Farrell, T.M., May, P. G. and Pilgrim, M. A. 2009. "Repeatability of Female Reproductive Traits in a Population of Pigmy Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus miliarius)."Journal of Herpetology 43: 332-335.
  • Farrell, T. M., Pilgrim, M. A. and May, P. G. 2008. "Annual Variation in Neonate Recruitment in a Florida Population of the Pigmy Rattlesnake, Sistrurus miliarius." pp. 257-264 in Hayes, W. K., Beaman, K. R., Cardwell, M. D. and Bush, S. P. (eds.), The Biology of Rattlesnakes. Loma Linda University Press, Loma Linda, California.
  • Farrell, T.M., Dodd, Jr., C. K. and May, P. G. 2006. "Terrapene carolina - Eastern Box Turtle." pp. 235-248 inBiology and Conservation of Florida Turtles, P.A. Meylan (ed.). Chelonian Research Monographs No. 3, 376
  • Glaudas, X., Farrell, T. M. and May, P. G. 2005. "Defensive Behavior of Free-Ranging Pygmy Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus miliarius)." Copeia. 2005: 196-200.
  • Cheatwood, J.L., Jacobson, E. R., May, P. G., Farrell, T. E., Homer, B. L., Samuelson, D. A. and Kimbrough, J. W. 2003. "An Outbreak of Fungal Dermatitis and Stomatitis in a Free-Ranging Population of Pigmy Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus miliarius barbouri) in Florida." Journal of Wildlife Disease 39: 329-337.
  • Greene, H. W., May, P. G., D.L. Hardy, Sr., Sciturro, J. M. and Farrell, T. M. 2002. "Parental Behavior by Vipers." pp. 179-206 In Biology of the Vipers, edited by: Schuett, G. W., Haggren, M., Douglas, M.E. and Greene, H. W. Eagle Mountain Publishing, LC. Eagle Mountain, Utah.
  • Rowe, M. P., Farrell, T. M. and May, P. G.. 2002. "Rattle Loss in Pigmy Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus miliarius): Causes, Consequences, and Implications for Rattle Function and Evolution." pp. 385- 404 In Biology of the Vipers, edited by: Schuett, G. W., Haggren, M., Douglas, M.E. and Greene, H. W. Eagle Mountain Publishing, LC. Eagle Mountain, Utah.
  • Lanciani, C.A. and P.G. May. 1982. "Parasite Mediated Reductions in the Growth of Nymphal Backswimmers." Parasitology 85: 1-7.
  • May, P.G. 1982. "Secondary Succession and Breeding Bird Community Structure: Patterns of Resource Utilization." Oecologia 55: 208-216.
  • May, P.G. 1984. "Avian Reproductive Output in Early and Late Successional Habitats." Oikos 43: 277- 81.
  • May, P.G. 1985. "Nectar Uptake Rates and Optimal Nectar Concentrations in Two Butterfly Species." Oecologia 66: 381-386.
  • May, P.G. 1986. "A Simple Method for Measuring Nectar Uptake Rates." J. Lepidopterists' Soc. 39: 53-55.
  • May, P.G. and E.E. Spears, Jr. 1988. "Andromonoecy and the Regulation of Sexual Expression in Passiflora incarnata." American J. Botany 75(12): 1830-1841.