Fred Provenza grew up in Salida, Colorado, working on a ranch while attending school in Wildlife Biology at Colorado State University. He is professor emeritus of Behavioral Ecology in the Department of Wildland Resources at Utah State University where he worked for 35 years, directing an award-winning research group that pioneered an understanding of how learning influences foraging behavior and how behavior links soil, plants, herbivores, and humans.
He is one of the founders of BEHAVE, an international network of scientists, ranchers, farmers, and land managers committed to integrating behavioral principles with local knowledge to enhance environmental, economic, and cultural values of rural and urban communities.
He is the author of three books, including Nourishment: What Animals Can Teach Us about Rediscovering Our Nutritional Wisdom; Foraging Behavior: Managing to Survive in a World of Change; and The Art & Science of Shepherding: Tapping the Wisdom of French Herders (co-author with Michel Meuret). He has published over 300 research papers in a wide variety of scientific journals. He has been an invited speaker at over 500 conferences.
The many awards he received for research, teaching, and mentoring are the creativity that flowed from warm professional and personal relationships with over 75 graduate students, post-doctoral students, visiting scientists, and colleagues during the past 45 years.