Earth Scientist
Earth Scientist


Cyler Conrad joined Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) in June 2023. Receiving his PhD in anthropology (archaeology) from the University of New Mexico in 2018, Conrad is currently a cultural resources environmental scientist within PNNL’s Risk and Environmental Assessment group. His work focuses on supporting environmental analyses and reviews for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, while also conducting environmental-based research at PNNL.

Working in California, New Mexico, Thailand, and Laos, Conrad has over a decade of experience in archaeological and environmental compliance and research. His published research primarily focuses on examining long-term, human-animal, and human-environmental interaction in the past and present. For example, by understanding how anthropogenic impacts resulted in dietary shifts and extinctions in Galapagos tortoises, or by understanding how pre-contact Indigenous peoples in the American Southwest managed their domesticated turkeys.

Conrad uses a wide range of techniques, including his specialty in archaeology called zooarchaeology—animal bone and shell identification and quantification—stable isotopes, radio isotopes, scanning electron microscopy, and various elemental and mineralogical analyses for his research. Between 2020 – 2023 he led a Laboratory Directed Research and Development project at Los Alamos National Laboratory that investigated the bioaccumulation and signatures of anthropogenic radionuclides in long-live fauna, especially turtles, tortoises, and sea turtles from nuclear sites.

Disciplines and Skills

  • Animal studies
  • Anthropology
  • Archaeology
  • Cultural resource management
  • Ecology
  • Environmental compliance
  • Environmental justice
  • History
  • Isotope geochemistry
  • Nuclear chemistry
  • Project management
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Reptiles
  • RStudio
  • Stable isotope analysis
  • Tribal consultation


  • PhD in anthropology, University of New Mexico
  • BA in Anthropology, University of Washington

Affiliations and Professional Service

  • Register of Professional Archaeologists

Awards and Recognitions

  • Los Alamos National Laboratory, Laboratory Directed Research and Development, Exploratory Research Grant, “Long-lived Fauna as Tracers of Anthropogenic Radionuclides”
  • National Science Foundation, Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant (#1724202), “Mainland Southeast Asia in the Longue Durée: a test of the ‘Broad Spectrum Revolution’ in Northern Thailand”
  • National Geographic Young Explorers Grant (#9630-14), “A Biogeographic and Isotopic Investigation of Modern and Ancient Mollusks on the Thai-Malay Peninsula”