Although his scholarship is diverse, a central theme to his research program is the conservation and management of imperiled reptiles. Along with his students and staff, he is involved in numerous empirical and applied studies throughout the Midwestern United States on snakes, turtles and other wildlife, including amphibians, but also birds and small mammals. He is an expert on a variety of species, particularly the federally threatened Eastern Massasauga and Copper-bellied Watersnake. He takes take both empirical and applied approaches, considering not only the basic ecology of the species, but how that relates to habitat restoration and land management practices. While his geographic focus has been the Midwest, he has also conducted research as far away as Egypt and Costa Rica.