John Cossel, D.A.

  • ProfessorQuetzal Education Research Center

Contact Info:


Dr. Cossel has had a lifelong interest in studying organisms in their natural environments and has always been drawn to the “creepy crawlies” of the animal kingdom, particularly the combined taxa of amphibians and reptiles (herpetofauna). At the Quetzal Education Research Center, Dr. Cossel teaches the Herpetology module of our Tropical Ecology and Sustainability Course. He also leads a herpetology research project each semester.

B.S., Biology Education, Northwest Nazarene University
M.S., Science Education, Oregon State University
D.A., Biology, Idaho State University

Notable Accomplishments

Dr. Cossel has an active lab group involved in both research and education/conservation outreach. He has received over $100,000 in grants to support his research resulting in numerous publications, conference presentations and guest lectures.

Notable Publications

Twining, Jonathan & Cossel, John. (2017). Temporal and spectral analysis of the advertisement call of Craugastor stejnegerianus (Anura: Craugastoridae) in Costa Rica. Mesoamerican Herpetology 4:129–136.

Acosta Chaves, Víctor & Cossel, John. (2016). Smilisca phaeota (Cope, 1862). Colonization. Mesoamerican Herpetology. 3. 713.

Salvador, Carli & Cossel, John. (2016). Vocalizations of Pristimantis cruentus (Anura: Craugastoridae) in Costa Rica. Mesoamerican Herpetology. 3: 548-556.

Hedrick, Alicia R. & Cossel, John. (2014). Limb malformations of the critically endangered stream-breeding frog Isthmohyla rivularis in the Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve, Costa Rica. Herpetological Review. 45. 5-8.

Olsen, Andrew & Cossel, John. (2014). Observations of a remnant population of the critically endangered hylid frog Isthmohyla rivularis on the Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve, Costa Rica. Herpetological Review. 45. 205-208.

Cossel, John & Lindquist, Erik & Craig, Heather & Luthman, Kyle. (2014). Pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in marbled water frog Telmatobius marmoratus: First record from Lake Titicaca, Bolivia. Diseases of aquatic organisms. 112. 83-7. 10.3354/dao02778.

Cossel, John & G. Gaige, Monica & D. Sauder, Joel. (2012). Electroshocking as a Survey Technique for Stream-Dwelling Amphibians. Wildlife Society Bulletin. 36. . 10.1002/wsb.145.

For more of Dr. Cossel’s publications, please visit Research Gate.


The education/conservation outreach efforts of Dr. Cossel’s lab group includes the design and installation of a rainforest exhibit (See a video clip) that is the best of its kind in the northwest. This and other live animal exhibits see over 1,000 visitors annually. Dr. Cossel is also an accomplished photographer with photographs appearing in magazines, books and in a curated photo exhibit called Naked Canaries that traveled to various universities (including a visit to Southern Nazarene University).

Summary of Interests

Herpetology (Natural History, Alpha Taxonomy, Bioacoustics, Thermal Ecology)
Science Education