Sheel Bansal


Sheel Bansal is a Research Ecologist at Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center. Dr. Bansal began his career in science working as a field technician on a variety of projects across the conterminous US, Alaska and Hawaii. His professional research experience covers a wide range of topics such as tree carbon balance at alpine-treeline (Wyoming), fertility effects on boreal plant ecophysiology (Sweden), drivers of grass invasion in sagebrush-steppe (Oregon), and drought tolerance of temperate forest trees (Washington). He is now studying wetland biogeochemistry in the Prairie Pothole Region. Much of the research in his lab is focused on understanding the underlying suite of abiotic and biotic processes that influence greenhouse gas emissions and carbon storage in wetlands. His lab is developing new, high-tech equipment to more efficiently quantify the immense spatial and temporal variability of these natural processes. Dr. Bansal is also working with internal and external partners to develop spatially-explicit, landscape-scale models to estimate regional carbon budgets for prairie pothole wetlands. These data and models provide DOI land managers and policy makers with information needed to understand, monitor, and anticipate changes in wetland carbon under various management, land-use and climate scenarios.


  • Ph.D., Plant Physiological Ecology, Idaho State University, 2008
  • M.A., Conservation Biology, University of Pennsylvania, 2000
  • B.A., Biology, University of Pennsylvania, 1999

Professional Experience

  • 2015-Present: Research Ecologist, U.S., Geological Survey, Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center, Jamestown, ND
  • 2013-2015: Research Ecologist (post doc), USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station, Olympia, WA
  • 2011-2013: Research Ecologist (post doc), USDA Agricultural Research Service, Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center, Burns, OR
  • 2009-2011: Postdoctoral researcher, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Ecology and Management, Umeå, Sweden


  • Society of Wetland Scientists
  • Rangeland Ecology and Management (associate editor)


  • DOI Fish and Wildlife Service
  • USDA Forest Service
  • USDA Agricultural Research Service
  • North Dakota State University