Skip to main content

Fitchburg State uses technology to gather information and better understand visitors’ experiences. By continuing to use this website, you consent to this usage in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

Faculty Directory » Christopher Picone


Office Hours:

Semester: Spring 2019
Tuesday 2:00PM - 3:15PM in SCI-209
Wednesday 11:00AM - 12:15PM in SCI-336

Office Information:

Room Number: Antonucci Science Complex 336
Phone: 978-665-3079

Courses Taught:

Ecology (with lab) (BIOL 2300)
Environmental Science (with lab) (BIOL 1010)
General Biology II (with lab) (BIOL 1900)
Conservation Biology (BIOL 3100)
Physical Science of Environmental change (content institute for teachers)


Ph.D., Ecology, University Of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI), 1999
Ph.D. Thesis: Comparative ecology of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in lowland tropical forest and pasture.

B.A., Biology summa cum laude, College of the Holy Cross (Worcester, MA), 1990

Research Interests:

Ecology of agricultural systems compared to "natural" systems, especially the interactions between plants and beneficial soil fungi (mycorrhizal fungi)
Effects of plowing (tillage) on mycorrhizal fungi
Impacts of aquatic herbicides on pond-breeding frogs
Ecological education: Assessing and confronting student misconceptions concerning transformation of energy and matter in ecosystems

Representative Publications:

Picone, C., 2015.  Effects of aquatic herbicides and housing density on abundance of pond-breeding frogs.  Northeastern Naturalist 22:  26-39. 

Picone, C., J. Rhode, L. Hyatt, and T. Parshall. June 2007, posting date. Assessing gains in undergraduate students' abilities to analyze graphical data. Teaching Issues and Experiments in Ecology, Vol. 5.

Cox, T.S., C. Picone, and W. Jackson. 2004. Research priorities in natural systems agriculture. Journal of Crop Improvement 12 (1/2): 511- 532.

Picone, C. 2003. Managing mycorrhizae for a sustainable agriculture in the tropics. Pp. 93-130 in Advances in Agroecology – Tropical agroecosystems. John Vandermeer, Ed. CRC Press.

Picone, C. 2002. Natural systems of soil fertility: the webs beneath our feet. The Land Report 73: 3-7.

Picone, C., D.Vantassel. 2002. Agriculture and biodiversity loss: industrial agriculture. Pp. 99-105 in Life on Earth: An Encyclopedia of Biodiversity, Ecology, and Evolution. Niles Eldredge, Ed. ABC-CLIO publishers.

Cox, T. S., M. Bender, C. Picone, D. L. Van Tassel, J. B. Holland, C. E. Brummer, B. E. Zoeller, A. H. Paterson and W. Jackson. 2002. Breeding perennial grain crops. Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences 21:59-91.

Picone, C. 2000. Wheat as part of a soil community: a history of cooperation with fungi. The Land Report 67: 6-7.

Picone, C. 2000. Diversity and abundance of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus spores in tropical forest and pasture. Biotropica 32: 734-750.

Professional Affiliations:

Ecological Society of America (Soil microbial ecology, agro-ecology, and education sections)
Soil Ecology Society
New World Agriculture and Ecology Group