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  • PhD, Fishery and Wildlife Biology, Colorado State University
  • MS, Fishery and Wildlife Biology, Colorado State University
  • BS, Wildlife Biology, University of Montana


Dr. Lukacs serves as Associate Professor of Quantitative Wildlife Ecology in Wildlife Biology Program at the University of Montana.  He teaches courses in population ecology, demographic estimation, and biostatistics.  His research applies ecological theory to real-world wildlife management problems through quantitative methods. Students and researchers in his group build computational tools, such as easy-to-use computer software, that make complex quantitative methods more accessible.  In doing so, they improve the efficiency and repeatability of wildlife management activities. He strives to produce methods and tools that can help facilitate good governance principles in wildlife management and to provide a strong quantitative educational background to students and professionals alike.

Dr. Lukacs also serves as Chief Science Officer for Speedgoat Wildlife Solutions.  Speedgoat focuses on data analytics and management for conservation organizations and agencies.  They develop software to streamline routine analysis problems faced by wildlife management agencies.

Selected Publications

Moeller, A. K, P. M. Lukacs, and J. S. Horne. 2018. Three novel methods to estimate abundance of unmarked animals using remote cameras. Ecosphere 9(8):e02331. 10.1002/ecs2.2331.

Nowak, J. J., P. M. Lukacs, M. A. Hurley, A. J. Lindbloom, K. A. Robling, J. A. Gude, and H. Robinson. 2018. Customized software to streamline routine analyses for wildlife management. Wildlife Society Bulletin 42: 144-149.

Lukacs, P. M., M. S. Mitchell, M. Hebblewhite, B. K. Johnson, H. Johnson, M. Kauffman, K. M. Proffitt, P. Zager, K. Hersey, A. A. Holland, M. Hurley, S McCorquodale, A. Middleton, M. Nordhagen, J. J. Nowak and D. P. Walsh. 2017. Factors influencing elk recruitment across three ecotypes in the western USA. Journal of Wildlife Management 81: 364-378.

Steenweg, R., M. Hebblewhite, J. Whittington, P. M. Lukacs and K. McKelvey. 2018. Sampling scales define occupancy and underlying occupancy-abundance relationships in animals. Ecology 99: 172-183.

Hurley, M. A., M. Hebblewhite, P. M. Lukacs, J. J. Nowak, J.-M. Gaillard, C. Bonefant. 2017. Generality and precision of regional-scale models for predicting overwinter survival of juvenile ungulates.  Journal of Wildlife Management 81: 364-378.

Courses Taught (University of Montana)

WILD 240 – Introduction to Biostatistics
WILD 470 – Conservation of Wildlife Populations
WILD 541 – Research Design Lab
WILD 542 – Statistical Applications in Wildlife Biology
WILD 571 – Estimation of Demographic Parameters