Who We Are

Sarver Ecological, LLC provides custom ecological services to a variety of clients, including agencies, landscape architects, developers, and non-profit organizations. We specialize in wildlife, invasive plants, native pollinators, native plant design, and holistic ecological assessment and management.

Matt Sarver Owner of Sarver Ecological LLC Environmental Consulting

Matt Sarver


About Matt

Matthew Sarver is the owner/principal of Sarver Ecological, LLC. Matt holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences, cum laude, from Cornell University with a concentration in Neurobiology and Animal Behavior. He has more than 15 years of field experience in ecology, wildlife biology, botany, entomology, herpetology, and land management.

He has worked for state natural heritage programs in Pennsylvania and Maryland, searched for the Ivory-billed Woodpecker for Cornell and The Nature Conservancy in Arkansas, and traveled the world, from Borneo to Colombia, studying and documenting biodiversity.

Matt is an Ecological Society of America (ESA) Certified Senior Ecologist, and a member of ESA’s Mid-Atlantic Chapter and Applied Ecology Section. He is also the Delaware representative on the boards of the Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council and the Society for Ecological Restoration Mid-Atlantic Chapter, and an Elected Fellow of the Delmarva Ornithological Society.


A recognized leader in the Mid-Atlantic conservation community, Matt is deeply committed to protecting the region’s natural resources for future generations. During seven years of leadership with the Delmarva Ornithological Society (DOS), he has worked closely with state agencies and conservation nonprofits on numerous critical conservation and environmental issues.

Matt’s extensive biological work on habitats and plant communities throughout the region gives him a unique perspective on ecological design.


Ecological Society of America (Mid-Atlantic Chapter, and Applied Ecology) (2008 – Present)

Society for Ecological Restoration (Mid-Atlantic Chapter) (2009 – Present)

  • Board (2012 – Present)

  • Conference Planning Committee (2012 – Present)
  • Nominations Committee (2013 – Present)

Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council (Life Member)

  • Board (2011 – Present)

Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation

Delaware Invasive Species Council

Board & Committee Service

Delaware Environmental Working Group (2012 – 2015)

Delmarva Ornithological Society

  • President (2011 – 2013)
  • Vice President (2009-2011)
  • 50th Anniversary Committee Chair (2012-2013)
  • Conservation Committee (2009 – 2013)
  • Conservation Committee Chair (2013 – Present)

2nd Delaware Breeding Bird Atlas Project

  • Technical Committee (2008 – 2013)
  • Publication Committee (2011 – 2013)

Delaware Nature Society

  • Land and Biodiversity Management Committee (2011 – Present)

Delaware DNREC HAC Eco-revitalization and Green Infrastructure Subcommittee (2015 – Present)

Christina Conservancy Board (2017 – Present)

Katie Bird, BS, MS (Candidate)

Wildlife Ecologist and GIS Specialist

About Katie

Katie is an avian ecologist with a complimentary background in entomology and insect ecology. She has experience in a variety of species monitoring techniques ranging from traditional methods, such as bird banding, point counting, vegetation surveying, and insect trapping. Katie is also familiar with new and evolving monitoring technologies, such as remote sensing using the Motus Wildlife Tracking Network and with NEXRAD weather radars.
In support of our field projects, Katie brings mapping skills using several GIS platforms and experience with a variety of data management and processing systems, including R programming. Katie’s background also includes work in nature education, volunteer coordination, social media management, and an undergraduate minor in Journalism.


Ms. Bird possesses a Bachelor of Science Degree with Distinction from University of Delaware in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation. She is currently completing a Master of Science in Wildlife Ecology at University of Delaware, studying the movement ecology of Purple Martins within the region.


Delaware Ornithological Society
American Ornithological Society
The Wildlife Society

Sophie Phillips, BS, MEEP

Wildlife Ecologist & Communications Lead

About Sophie

Sophie has focused her work on environmental justice throughout the state of Delaware with an emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Over the past few years she has worked on expanding urban green space in Wilmington, Delaware and in Baltimore, Maryland in partnership with community groups. As Miss Delaware 2021 in the Miss America Organization, she worked with youth throughout the state on professional development. Through the creation of community gardens, she taught communities how to grow, harvest, and cook their own food.

Sophie has worked with a broad range of wildlife, from bats to monarch butterflies to sea scallops, and has experience with water quality monitoring, oyster reef and living shoreline creation. She is now a Delaware State Representative for the 18th District.


Ms. Phillips possesses a Bachelor of Science Degree with Distinction from the University of Delaware in Environmental and Marine Science, and a master’s degree from the University of Delaware in Energy and Environmental Policy (MEEP).


Delaware Ornithological Society
American Ornithological Society
The Wildlife Society

Collaborating Professionals

We work with a large network of professionals as required on our projects.

Christopher Heckscher

Dr. Christopher (Kitt) Heckscher

Dr. Christopher (Kitt) Heckscher is Associate Professor of Environmental Science & Ecology at Delaware State University and the Institutional Project Director of the NOAA EPP Environmental Cooperative Science Center at DSU.

His lab’s research includes the effect of sea level rise and climate change on coastal stopover sites for migratory birds, as well as long-term studies of the behavioral ecology and migratory connectivity of Catharusthrushes. Dr. Heckscher is also an expert on the inventory and conservation of rare terrestrial and wetland-associated invertebrates especially Lampyridae (fireflies), Odonata (damselflies and dragonflies), and Lepidoptera (butterflies, skippers, moths [esp. Catocalaand Papaipema]). He has extensive experience in zoological assessments of Mid-Atlantic natural areas and in conducting field research specifically aimed at providing data for informed land management decisions.

Previously, he served as Delaware’s State Zoologist for 12 years for The Nature Conservancy and Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife, where he initiated, developed, and maintained the Delaware state zoological database and conducted field inventories of rare species. Kitt also has 9 years of experience as a zoologist for The Nature Conservancy.

Jim White

Jim White – Expert Herpetologist

Jim White is a native Delawarean, growing up in Wilmington and Newark. He received his BS in Entomology and Applied Ecology from the University of Delaware. Jim recently retired from the Delaware Nature Society where he worked as Senior Fellow for Land and Biodiversity Management since 1982. He was the lead field researcher for the first 5–year Delaware Amphibian and Reptile Survey. With his wife Amy he co-authored the Amphibians and Reptiles of Delmarva, a 250-page field guide published in 2002 and revised in 2007. Jim has conducted many field surveys for amphibians, reptiles and birds throughout Delaware and continues to work with the Delaware Fish and Wildlife on distributional and life history studies on herpetiles. He is author and photographer for various natural history publications, including Outdoor Delaware magazine. Since 2000 he has taught herpetology at University of Delaware.

Chris Hoess

Chris Hoess – Expert Botanist

Chris Hoess was awarded a BA in Chemistry and Biochemistry from the University of Pennsylvania in 2002 and an MS in Structural and Molecular Biology from Weill-Cornell in 2007. He has been a full-time biology instructor at Delaware Technical Community College since 2009. A long-time member and trip leader for the Philadelphia Botanical Club, his principal botanical interests are serpentine flora, pteridology, and molecular systematics. His systematics projects have included a study of maidenhair ferns on the State Line Serpentine Barrens, shown to be A. pedatum, and an ongoing study of the Cerastium arvense complex, abundant on the serpentine barrens but also present on schist outcrops on the lower Susquehanna. As chair of the Friends of the State Line Serpentine Barrens, he has become intimately familiar with the restoration ecology and botany of these communities, including relocation of a Gentiana villosa population. His pteridology training includes a course with Robbin Moran & Carl Taylor at Eagle Hill and the Organization for Tropical Studies ferns course in Costa Rica in 2022. He prepared a full inventory of cultivated native ferns at Mt Cuba Center and gave a 2022 fern workshop for PA Botany, including a field trip to the lower Susquehanna. While engaged in recreational botany in the area, he located new populations of Asplenium bradleyi and A. pinnatifidum at Muddy Run and (with Rachel Goad) the gametophyte Crepidomanes intricatum at Mill Creek Falls.

Sam Droege

Sam Droege – Wildlife Biologist & Native Bee Expert

Sam is a Wildlife Biologist at the Eastern Ecological Science Center in Laurel, MD. Sam has coordinated the North American Breeding Bird Survey Program, developed the North American Amphibian Monitoring Program, the BioBlitz, Cricket Crawl, and FrogwatchUSA programs and worked on the design and evaluation of monitoring programs. Currently he is developing an inventory and monitoring program for native bees, online identification guides for North American bees at discoverlife.org, and reviving the North American Bird Phenology Program. Sam received a B.S. from University of Maryland and an M.S. from State University of New York – Syracuse.