Feagin photo

Dr. Rusty Feagin

Dr. Feagin is an associate professor in the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management at Texas A&M University. He studies sand dunes, salt marshes, beaches, and other coastal ecosystems with particular emphasis on the effects of global climate change and urbanization upon coastal plant community distribution using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and its related technologies.

Office: Centeq 221C
Phone: (979) 862-2612
Fax: (979) 862-2607
Email: feaginr@tamu.edu

Courses Taught

  • ESSM 461/651: Geographic Information Systems for Natural Resource Management
  • ESSM 689: Barrier Island Ecology


  • Ph.D. Texas A&M University, 2003
  • B.A. University of California, Santa Cruz, 1996

Honors & Awards

  • Fellow - Mexican American and US Latino Research Center 2010-2013
  • Visiting Faculty - University of Southern Mississippi 2011
  • Visiting Faculty - University of Victoria, Restoration Institute 2009-2010
  • Visiting Fellow - University of Cambridge, Fitzwilliam College 2008
  • British Council - Climate Change Summit 2005
  • Association of Former Students Graduate Student Teaching Award 2003


For a .pdf copy, please contact me at feaginr@tamu.edu

1. Bianchi, T.S., Allison, M.A., Zhao, J., Li, X., Comeaux, R.S., Feagin, R.A., & Kulawardhana, R.W. 2013. Historical reconstruction of mangrove expansion in the Gulf of Mexico: Linking climate change with carbon sequestration in coastal wetlands. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 119: 7-16.

2. Feagin, R.A., Yeager, K.M., Brunner, C.A., & Paine, J.G. 2013. Active fault motion in a coastal wetland: Matagorda Peninsula, Texas. Geomorphology: DOI: 10.1016/j.geomorph.2012.08.013.

3. Feagin, R.A., Williams, A.M., Popescu, S., Stukey, J., & Washington-Allen, R.A. 2013. The use of Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS) in dune ecosystems: The lessons learned. Journal of Coastal Research: DOI: 10.2112/JCOASTRES-D-11-00223.

4. Feagin, R.A. 2013. Foredune restoration before and after hurricanes. Restoration of Coastal Dunes (eds. M.L. Martínez, J.B. Gallego-Fernández & P.A. Hesp.), Springer-Verlag, New York, pp. 93-106.

5. Pérez-Maqueo, O., Martínez, M.L., Lithgow, D., Mendoza-González, G., Feagin, R.A., & Gallego-Fernández, J.B.  2013. The coasts and their costs. Restoration of Coastal Dunes (eds. M.L. Martínez, J.B. Gallego-Fernández & P.A. Hesp.),  Springer-Verlag, New York, pp. 289-306.

6. Colón-Rivera, R.J., Feagin, R.A., West, J.B., & Yeager, K.M.  2012. Salt marsh connectivity and freshwater versus saltwater inflow: Multiple methods including tidal gauges, water isotopes, and LIDAR elevation models. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences: In Press.

7. Yeager, K.M., Brunner, C.A., Kulp, M.A., Fischer, D., Feagin, R.A., Schindler, K.J., Prouhet, J., & Bera, G. 2012. Significance of active growth faulting on marsh accretion processes in the lower Pearl River, Mississippi. Geomorphology 153-154: 127-143.

8. Parkes, M.L., Mora, M.A. & Feagin, R.A. 2012. Using scale, cover type, and GIS to evaluate nuisance cattle egret colony site selection. Waterbirds 35: 56-63.

9. Martínez, M.L., Feagin, R.A., Yeager, K.M., Day, J., Costanza, R., Harris, J.A., Hobbs, R.J., López-Portillo, J., Walker, I.J., Higgs, E., Moreno-Casasola, P., Sheinbaum, J., & Yáñez-Arancibia, A. 2012. Artificial modifications of the coast in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill: Quick solutions or long term liabilities? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 10: 44-49.

10. Cline, M., Feagin, R.A., Yeager, K.M., & Van Alstyne, J.M. 2011. Fault-induced wetland loss at Matagorda, Texas, USA: Land cover changes from 1943 to 2008. Geocarto International 26: 633-645.

11. Feagin, R.A., Irish, J.L., Möller, I., Williams, A.M., Mousavi, M.E, & Colón-Rivera, R.J. 2011. Engineering properties of wetland plants with application to wave attenuation. Coastal Engineering 58: 251-255.

12. Alhamad, M.N., Alrababah, M., Feagin, R.A., & Gharaibeh, A. 2011. Mediterranean land mosaics: Effect of grain size on landscape spatial pattern. Ecological Indicators 11: 611-621.

13. Feagin, R.A., Gonzalez, G., Martínez, M.L., & Costanza, R. 2010. Salt marsh zonal migration and ecosystem service change in response to global sea level rise: A case study from an urban region. Ecology and Society 15: 14.

14. Feagin, R.A., Smith, W.K., Psuty, N.P., Young, D.R., Martínez, M.L., Carter, G.A., Lucas, K.L., Gibeaut, J.C., Gemma, J.N., & Koske, R.E. 2010. Barrier islands: Coupling anthropogenic stability with ecological sustainability. Journal of Coastal Research 26: 987-992.

15. Williams, A.M. & Feagin, R.A. 2010. Sargassum as a natural solution to enhance dune plant growth. Environmental Management 46: 738-747.

16. Costanza, R., Batker, D., Day, J., Feagin, R.A., Martínez, M.L., & Roman, J. 2010. The perfect spill: Solutions for averting the next Deepwater Horizon. Solutions 1(5): 17-20.

17. Feagin, R.A., Mukherjee, N., Shanker, K., Baird, A.H., Cinner, J., Kerr, A.M., Koedam, N., Sridhar, A., Arthur, R., Jayatissa, L.P., Lo Seen, D., Menon, M., Rodriguez, S., Shamsuddoha, M., & Dahdouh-Guebas, F. 2010. Shelter from the storm? Use and misuse of coastal vegetation bioshields for managing natural disasters. Conservation Letters 3: 1-11.

18. Nicolai, N., Feagin, R.A., & Smeins, F.E. 2010. Spatial patterns of grass seedling recruitment imply predation and facilitation by harvester ants. Environmental Entomology 39: 127-133.

19. Benjamin, L.A., Fosgate, G.T., Ward, M.P., Roussel, A.J., Feagin, R.A., & Schwartz, A.L. 2010. Attitudes towards biosecurity practices relevant to Johne's disease control on beef cattle farms.  Preventive Veterinary Medicine 94: 222-230.

20. Benjamin, L.A., Fosgate, G.T., Ward, M.P., Roussel, A.J., Feagin, R.A., & Schwartz, A.L. 2009. Benefits of obtaining test-negative Level 4 classification for beef producers in the Voluntary Bovine Johne's Disease Control Program. Preventive Veterinary Medicine 91: 280-284.

21. Feagin, R.A. 2009. A coastal ecologist sees the hidden effects of hurricanes. Journal Club. Nature 461: 319.

22. Feagin, R.A., Lozada-Bernard, S.M., Ravens, T., Moller, I., Yeager, K.M., & Baird, A.H. 2009. Does vegetation prevent wave erosion of salt marsh edges? Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 106: 10109-10113.

23. Williams, A.M., Feagin, R.A., Smith, W.K., & Jackson, N.L. 2009. Ecosystem impacts of Hurricane Ike on Galveston Island and Bolivar Peninsula: Perspectives of the Coastal Barrier Island Network (CBIN). Shore & Beach 77: 71-76.

24. Feagin, R.A. 2008. Vegetation's role in coastal protection. Letters. Science 320: 176-177.

25. Williams, A.M., Feagin, R.A., & Stafford, A.W. 2008. Environmental impacts of beach raking of Sargassum spp. on Galveston Island. Shore & Beach 76: 63-69.

26. Feagin, R.A., & Williams, A.M. 2008. Sediment spatial patterns in a Hurricane Katrina overwash fan on Dauphin Island, Alabama, USA. Journal of Coastal Research 24: 1063-1070.

27. LaFever, D.H., Lopez, R.R., Feagin, R.A., & Silvy, N.J. 2007. Predicting the impacts of sea-level rise on an endangered lagomorph. Environmental Management 40: 430-437.

28. Feagin, R.A., & Wu. X.B. 2007. The spatial patterns of functional groups and sand dune plant community succession. Journal of Rangeland Ecology & Management 60: 417-425.

29. He, W., Feagin, R.A., Lu, J., Liu, W., Yan, Q., Xie, Z. 2007. Impacts of introduced Spartina alterniflora along an elevational gradient at the Jiuduansha Shoals in the Yangtze Estuary, suburban Shanghai, China. Ecological Engineering 29: 245-248.

30. Feagin, R.A., Wu, X.B., & Feagin, T. 2007. Edge effects in lacunarity analysis. Ecological Modelling 201: 262-268.

31. Tong, C., Feagin, R.A., Lu, J., Zhang, X., Zhu, X., Wang, W., & He, W. 2007. Ecosystem service values and restoration in the urban Sanyang Wetland of Wenzhou, China. Ecological Engineering 29: 249-258.

32. Feagin, R.A. & Wu, X.B. 2006. Spatial pattern and edge characteristics in restored terrace versus reference salt marshes in Galveston Bay. Wetlands 26: 1004-1011.

33. Feagin, R.A. 2005. Heterogeneity versus homogeneity: A conceptual and mathematical theory in terms of scale-invariant and scale-covariant distributions. Ecological Complexity 2: 339-356.

34. Feagin, R.A., Sherman, D.J., & Grant, W.E. 2005. Coastal erosion, global sea-level rise, and the loss of sand dune plant habitats.  Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 3: 359-364.

35. Feagin, R.A. 2005. Artificial dunes created to protect property on Galveston Island, Texas: The lessons learned. Ecological Restoration 23: 89-94.

36. Feagin, R.A., Wu, X.B., Smeins, F.E., Whisenant, S.G. & Grant, W.E. 2005. Individual versus community processes and pattern formation in a model of sand dune succession. Ecological Modelling 183: 435-449.

37. Feagin, R.A. & Wu, X.B. 2005. An experimental approach for quantifying the spatial interactions of plants under different treatment conditions. Ecoscience 21: 44-52.

38. Feagin, R.A. 2003. Relationship of second order lacunarity, Brownian motion, Hurst exponent, and pattern organization. Physica A 328: 315-321.