Smith, Loren M.

Loren M. Smith, Regents Professor Emeritus

Wetland Ecology, Ecosystem Services, Biodiversity, Restoration Ecology, Playa Wetlands

Ph.D., Utah State University

Phone: 405-744-5555


Publication list

Specific Interests

My research focuses on various aspects of wetland/grassland ecology and ecosystem structure and function. Most of my graduate students examine wetland/grassland ecosystems in relation to (1) biota requirements (e.g., migratory birds, plants, amphibians), (2) ecosystem services, and (3) restoration. My personal research is focused on ecosystem services in playa wetlands and restoration of various wetland types at large geographic scales. Please feel free to email concerning availability of graduate student projects.


Recent Publications (since 2012)


  • Hooser-Hartman, E.A., J.B. Belden, L.M. Smith, and S.T. McMurry. 2014. Chronic effects of strobilurin fungicides on development, growth, and mortality of larval Great Plains toads (Bufo cognatus). Ecotoxicology: in press.
  • Taylor, D. P., J.N. Vradenburg, L.M. Smith, M.B. Lovern, and S. T. McMurry. 2014. Effects of anthropogenic and environmental Stress on the corticosterone levels of wintering northern pintails (Anas acuta). Canadian Journal of Zoology: in press.


  • Anderson, T.A., C.J. Salice, R.A. Erickson, S.T. McMurry, S.B. Cox, and L.M. Smith. 2013. Effects of landuse and precipitation on pesticides and water quality in playa lakes of the Southern High Plains. Chemosphere 92: 84-90.
  • Beas, B.J., L.M. Smith, K.R. Hickman, T.G. LaGrange, and R. Stutheit. 2013. Seed bank responses to wetland restoration: do restored wetlands resemble reference wetland conditions following sediment removal? Aquatic Botany 108: 7-15.
  • Beas, B.J., L.M. Smith, T.G. LaGrange, and R. Stutheit. 2013. Effects of sediment removal on vegetation communities in Rainwater Basin playa wetlands. Journal of Environmental Management 128: 371-379.
  • Euliss, N. H., Jr., M.M. Brinson, D. M. Mushet, L.M. Smith, W.H. Conner, V. R. Burkett, D. A. Wilcox, M. W. Hester, and H. Zheng. 2013. Ecosystem services: developing sustainable management paradigms based on wetland functions and processes. Pages 181-227 in J. T. Anderson and C. A. Davis, eds. Wetland Techniques Volume 3: Applications and Management. Springer, New York, NY,USA.
  • Ghioca-Robrecht, D.M., and L.M. Smith. 2013. Factors influencing pre-metamorphic body mass of two polymorphic spadefoot species in cropland and grassland playas. Journal of Herpetology 47: 299-307.
  • Morrison, S.A., S. T. McMurry, L. M. Smith, and J. B. Belden. 2013. Toxicity of strobilurin fungicides to Hyalella azteca. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 32:1516-1525.
  • O’Connell, L. A. Johnson, B. J. Beas, L.M. Smith, S.T. McMurry, and D. A. Haukos. 2013. Predicting dispersal-limitation in plants: Optimizing planting decisions for isolated wetland restoration in agricultural landscapes. Biological Conservation 159: 343-354. doi 10.1016/j.biocon.2012.10.019
  • O’Connell, L. A. Johnson, D.W. Daniel, S.T. McMurry, L.M. Smith, and D. A. Haukos. 2013. Effects of agricultural tillage and sediment accumulation on emergent plant communities in playa wetlands of the U.S. High Plains. Journal of Environmental Management 120: 10-17.


  • Belden, J.B., B. Hanson, S.T. McMurry, L.M. Smith, and D.A. Haukos. 2012. Assessment of the effects of farming and conservation programs on pesticide deposition in High Plains wetlands. Environmental Science & Technology 46: 3424−3432.
  • Hooser, E. A., J. B. Belden, L.M. Smith, and S.T. McMurry. 2012. Acute toxicity of three strobilurin fungicide formulations and their active ingredients to tadpoles. Ecotoxicology 21 1458-1464; doi 10.1007/s10646-012-0899-y.
  • Johnson, L. A., D. A. Haukos, L.M. Smith, and S.T. McMurry. 2012. Physical loss and modification of Southern Great Plains Playas. Journal of Environmental Management 112: 275-283.
  • O’Connell, J., L. Johnson, L.M. Smith, S.T. McMurry, and D. A. Haukos. 2012. Influence of land-use and conservation programs on wetland plant communities of the semi-arid United States Great Plains. Biological Conservation 146: 108-115. doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2011.11.030
  • Smith, L.M., D.A. Haukos, and S.T. McMurry. 2012. High Plains Playas. Chapter 21 in Batzer, D. and A. Baldwin, eds. Wetland Habitats of North America: Ecology and Conservation Concerns, University of California Press, Berkeley, CA.
  • Tsai, J.-S., L. S. Venne, L. M. Smith, S. T. McMurry, and D.A. Haukos. 2012. Influence of local and landscape characteristics on avian richness and density in wet playas of the Southern Great Plains, USA. Wetlands: doi 10.1007/s13157-012-0280-1.
  • Venne, L. S., J-S. Tsai, S. B. Cox, L. M. Smith, and S. T. McMurry. 2012. Amphibian community richness in cropland and grassland playas in the Southern High Plains, USA. Wetlands 32:619–629, doi 10.1007/s13157-012-0305-9.
  • Villarreal, C.J., R. E. Zartman, W. H. Hudnall, D. Gitz, K. Rainwater, and L. M. Smith. 2012. Spatial distribution and morphology of sediments in Texas Southern High Plains playa wetlands. Texas Water Journal 3: 1-14.

Recent Commentaries (since 2010)

  • Smith, L. M.. N. H. Euliss, Jr., and D. A. Haukos. 2011. Are isolated wetlands isolated? National Wetlands Newsletter 33 (5, Aug/Sep): 26-27. http://www.wetlandsnewsletter.
  • Smith, L.M., and N. H. Euliss, Jr. 2010. Viewpoints- The dirt on sediments. National Wetlands Newsletter 32 (September/October): 25-26.
  • Euliss, N. H., Jr., and L. M. Smith. 2010. Viewpoints- Conservation: Ecosystem processes and the hemi-marsh concept: clarifying principles for wetland management. National Wetlands Newsletter 32. (March/April): 23-24.
  • Smith, L.M. 2013. Viewpoint on wetlands and ecosystem services.