Stevens investigates impacts of environmental change through time by exploring patterns of biogeography and extinction in the fossil record. Her work draws on comparative vertebrate anatomy and the application of functional morphological approaches to evolutionary questions. Stevens’ paleontological research aims to provide a comparative dataset to examine geographic and temporal patterns in faunal evolution. New fossils help unravel the roles of phylogeny and environment for shaping the development of morphological differences associated with specific locomotor and dietary patterns. Stevens has conducted laboratory and field kinematic studies on modern species, with projects relating to arboreal substrate use and feeding. She is particularly interested in documenting how critically endangered animals utilize structural habitats that are rapidly changing due to anthropogenic and natural environmental change. Recent projects in Madagascar have explored these questions in critically endangered primates and other mammals.
1. 2017. NJ Stevens. Oligocene Primates. The International Encyclopedia of Primatology.
2. 2013. NJ Stevens et al. Palaeontological evidence for an Oligocene divergence between Old World monkeys and apes. Nature. 497: 611-614.
3. 2013. NJ Stevens, CP Heesy. Head posture and visual orientation in Loris tardigradus during locomotion on oblique supports. In: J. Masters (ed) Leaping Ahead: Advances in Prosimian Biology.
4. 2013. JH Ratsimbazafy, NJ Stevens, et al. Conservation of Lemurs in Madagascar. In: J. Masters (ed) Leaping Ahead: Advances in Prosimian Biology.
5. 2011. NJ Stevens, JH Ratsimbazafy, F Ralainasolo. Linking field and laboratory approaches for studying primate responses to support orientation. In: E Vereecke and K D’Aout (eds), Primate Locomotion: Linking Laboratory and Field Research. Springer, Topics in Primatology.
6. 2009. S Johnson, J Ratsimbazafy, NJ Stevens, H Andriamaharoa, S Martin, F Ralainasolo. Gray-headed lemur Eulemur cinereiceps (Milne-Edwards and Grandidier, 1880). In: R. A. Mittermeier et al., Primates in Peril: The World’s 25 Most Endangered Primates 2008–2010, pp.15-17. IUCN/SSC Primate Specialist Group, International Primatological Society (IPS), and Conservation International (CI), Arlington, VA.
7. 2008. F Ralainasolo, JH Ratsimbazafy, and NJ Stevens. Behavioural study and diet of Eulemur cinereiceps in Manombo forest, southeastern Madagascar. Madagascar Conservation and Development. 3: 54-59. (corresponding author)
8. 2008. NJ Stevens. The effects of branch diameter on primate gait sequence pattern. American Journal of Primatology. 70(4): 356-362.
9. 2008. NJ Stevens, MD Gottfried, EM Roberts, S Ngasala, S Kapilima, PM O’Connor. Paleontological exploration of Africa: A view from the Rukwa Rift Basin of Tanzania. In: Elwyn Simons, A Search for Origins, Developments in Primatology: Progress and Prospects. pp 159-180.
10. 2008. NJ Stevens and K. Carlson. Bridging gaps between experimental and naturalistic approaches in the study of primate behavior. International Journal of Primatology. 29: 1395–1399.
11. 2007. J Young, BA Patel, NJ Stevens. Body mass distribution and gait sequence pattern in fat-tailed dwarf lemurs (Cheirogaleus medius) and patas monkeys (Erythrocebus patas). Journal of Human Evolution. 53(1): 26-40.
12. 2007. KAI Nekaris, NJ Stevens. Not all lorises are slow: rapid arboreal quadrupedalism in the newly recognized red slender loris (Loris tardigradus tardigradus) of Sri Lanka. American Journal of Primatology. 69(1): 112-120.
13. 2006. NJ Stevens. Stability, limb coordination and substrate type: the ecorelevance of gait sequence pattern in primates. Journal of Experimental Zoology. 305A(11): 953-963.
14. 2006. NJ Stevens, CP Heesy. Malagasy primate origins: Fossils, phylogenies and biogeographic reconstructions. Folia Primatologica. 77(6): 419-431.
15. 2006. NJ Stevens, PM O’Connor. Abiotic and Biotic Factors as Predictors of Primate Species Richness in Madagascar. In: Primate Biogeography. eds: JG Fleagle and S Lehman. pp 269-300.
16. 2005. NJ Stevens, PM O’Connor, EM Roberts, MD Gottfried, S Ngasala. An anthropoid primate humerus from the Paleogene of sub-Saharan Africa. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 25(4): 986-989.
17. 2003. NJ Stevens. The influence of substrate size, orientation and compliance upon prosimian arboreal quadrupedalism. Ph.D. dissertation, State University of New York at Stony Brook. 534pp.